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Play It Safe: Making Sure You're Not Committing Copyright Infringement
Copyright infringement is not an easy thing to explain. While it may seem as simple as not using someone else?s work, it?s not that easy. Thanks to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and many other organizations, we have the ability to use others? works ? as long as we use it under ?fair use? laws. So what does fair use have to do with copyright infringement, and how can you utilize it?
Fair use laws are the conditions in which you can use a copyrighted work without having to pay someone royalties. This includes when you use a copyrighted work for educational or instructional uses, criticism of the work, commentaries on the work, news reporting about the work, teaching on the work (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship uses, and research. This is talked about fully in Section 107 of the Copyright Code (commonly called Fair Use) and is available for you to read at your local library.
Copyright Infringement in day-to-day life
Sometimes, if you?re writing a paper for work or school, or if you are creating a Power Point presentation, you need to use someone?s work that is already in copyright. So how do you use it without committing copyright infringement? All you have to do is ask ? the worst they can say is no, right? But, if they do say no, there are several items in the public domain which may help you to finish your project without having to commit copyright infringement.
What is the public domain, and how does it relate to copyright infringement?
Material that is not copyrighted is considered in the public domain ? you cannot commit copyright infringement on works in the public domain. These works include things that the copyright has expired on, or is not copyright-able ? such as government publications, jokes, titles, and ideas. Some creators (writers, musicians, artists, and more) deliberately put their work in the public domain, without ever obtaining copyright, by providing an affiliation with Creative Commons. Creative Commons allows people who create materials to forfeit some, or all, of their copyright rights and place their work either partially or fully in the public domain.
So, how do I ensure I?m not committing copyright infringement?
First of all, if you?re going to use someone else?s material, you may want to check the public domain to see if something is suitable for use, instead of trying to use someone else?s copyright. However, if you can?t find something suitable (and you can?t create something yourself), the next best thing (and your only legal course of action) is to find a piece that is in copyright, and contacting the copyright holder.
When you contact the copyright holder, make sure you tell them what you want to use their piece for ? whether it?s for your blog, podcast, or report ? and ask them if you can use it. You may have to pay royalties, or an attribution in your piece, or a combination of both. The creator may also place many limitations on when and how you can use their material. Follow all these instructions they give you, and you?ll be free and clear to use their work as you want.
Once you have permission to use a copyrighted work, you need to make sure you stay within the agreed-upon boundaries - if you veer outside their agreed terms, you may open yourself up for a copyright infringement lawsuit ? which can be nasty, costly, and time consuming. If you?re in doubt, before contacting the copyright holder, contact a copyright lawyer to ensure you?re following the law ? and protect yourself!
Copyright music free Getting Copyright Music Free can Pay the Artists There are few people that will allow you to use their copyright music free. If you've found a person or a business that is willing to allow this then either consider yourself extremely lucky or start searching for the very fine print. Most people feel a certain kindred or passion for the music they like and they aren't overly willing to part with it at all unless they feel it is their calling to share this music with the world. In those circumstances you will be amazed at how eager they are to share their "message". I however, worry more about those that are eager to share than I worry about those who say no rather quickly and without sending another thought your way. Call me crazy but I'm usually the first one to give my things away and to share when I don't really have that much to begin with. I believe in sacrifice and the need for giving to those who have less or those whose needs are somehow not being met. This makes me a prime candidate for those who would ask me to share my copyright music free. I'm afraid my answer to that question is almost always going to be a no of my own. That being said I've always held a special fondness for musicians. Perhaps it's those teen crushes from which I've never fully recovered-ahem-2 or 3 years later. The problem today is the people are downloading copyright music free online without regards to the fact that when they get it free, someone isn't getting paid for their talents, efforts, and hard work. There are alternatives that will allow you to download the music really cheaply or pay a subscription fee for a service that allows you to download all the music you want for one set amount each month. These services allow the talented writers and performers of this music that adds so much to our lives each and every day to get paid for their labor. Paying for the music in this manner also allows us to enjoy that music while cutting out the middlemen and markups we often pay when purchasing music at retail prices. You do not have to get copyright music free in order to enjoy a wonderful bargain and when you pay something for your music you are ensuring that these talented writers and performers will find it profitable to continue providing this music that entertains you so much. We all enjoy getting things for free or feeling as though we've gotten a terrific bargain. That is one reason that subscription services are so wildly popular. You pay one price for the privilege of downloading as much music as your hard drive and modem can handle each month. It's like paying one fee and enjoying copyright music free except that you are actually paying for the music you are getting in other ways. More importantly though, the artists, writers, and recording companies are getting a piece of the profit pie, which keeps them in business. After the recent problems involved with massive and illegal downloading of copyright music free, recording companies began putting their proverbial feet down and demanding that action be taken. The solutions have been quite clever and highly effective. Consumers were much more willing to pay a monthly subscription fee that amounted to the amount of money that one CD would cost in order to download unlimited music from their homes. Record companies are getting paid for work that has already been done without the need actually produce, deliver, transport, and market their new CDs. This is copyright music free in its best form for all involved.
Copyright lawyer Everything You Need to Know about a Copyright Lawyer Everything you may need to know about a copyright lawyer before you get one, there are so many different types of lawyers a little run down never hurt anyone. Copyright lawyers deal with many different subjects such as internet law, intellectual property, patent and trademark and of course your copyright laws. Each lawyer has gone to school for some time in order to get a degree to help you, which means they know more about the law than you do. Some mistakes website owners make is when they buy articles online; many times a buyer just assumes they have full copyright. This isn?t always the case, depending what was agreed on will determine who has ownership. In order to make sure you don?t fall into this trap have a lawyer set up a contract before you hand over any money, this way you know for sure if you have full ownership or if the writer does. There are actually three different categories that you may purchase an article, usage, full and unique. A copyright lawyer will explain exactly what each one means. Usage is basically meaning the buyer gets to use the article one time, but the writer can use it again or resell it. Full rights will give the buyer all rights; they can even place their name on the article saying they wrote it. A copyright lawyer will never tell you that you don?t have to register your copyright; in fact they will encourage you to do it. Sure, they get money to do it for you but you will have documented proof that you own the copyright. If you don?t file it, you can?t sue if someone uses your information. A copyright lawyer is not cheap, that means if you are just looking to pay out a mere $300 you are looking in the wrong field. Sure there are sites that offer to do your bidding for you. Are you sure they are someone you trust? Stick with your gut feeling, pay the money and have someone there to walk you through everything you need. Most copyright lawyers will have special discounts on packages, which means you?ll be getting a lot more than what you originally walked in for. Chances are your lawyer will even advise you of things you didn?t even have knowledge about. A copyright lawyer can help you better understand the laws of the virtual world, as well as the real world. Every day someone new is getting sued over content on the internet, it can be as simple as someone stealing an article, quote, song or a picture. A big issue is using another company?s name in your tags to get the search engines to rank you higher, you will get caught and when you do the fines are pretty steep. Other issues may be with bloggers today, be careful with what you say about your places of business, not only could you get in trouble for any copyrighting issues but slander is another big issue. Another thing you may want to know about a copyright lawyer is that you can use one even if you are actually getting sued. Many people only look for one when they want to copyright something or sue someone, but they normally don?t think about hiring a copyright lawyer when they are being sued. This is definitely the person you want on the job defending you if the time comes, after all they do know their job. That?s everything you need to know about a copyright lawyer before you get one, if you have any other questions call them up and ask them. Lawyers love to give advice, especially if they think you?ll be hiring them.
US copyright law U.S. Copyright Law Covers Artistic Expression and Creative and Intellectual Works The US Copyright Law grants rights to individuals for the works they create. The US Copyright Act of 1790 has changed over the years. The current basis of US copyright law is based on the Copyright Act of 1976. US copyright law is relatively automatic. Once someone has an idea and produces it in tangible form, the creator is the copyright holder and has the authority to enforce his exclusivity to it. In other words, the person is the owner of the creation. It is not necessary that a person register their work. However, it is recommended and it can serve as evidence if someone ever violates a copyright. It is interesting to note that when an employer hires an employee to produce a work that the copyright is given to the employer. Violations of US Copyright Law are generally enforced in a civil court setting. However, there could also be criminal sanctions brought against someone who violates US copyright law. Someone that is in serious violation of US Copyright Law such as counterfeiting can find themselves on the inside of prison looking out. People need to understand that the copyright symbol is not a requirement. Someone may have a copyright, yet their work may not have a copyright notice or symbol. US Copyright Law covers a wide range of things that are derived from artistic expression, intellectual or creative work. This includes things such as literary works, music, drawings, photographs, software, movies, choreographic works such as ballets and plays, poems, paintings and more. The law covers the form of expression, not the concept, facts or the actual idea of the work. This means that someone can use another person?s idea or concept and produce their own take on it. However, copying another person?s work is a violation. It should be noted that some things may not be copyrighted but they may be protected by a patent or trademark. Individuals who have a copyright on a particular piece of work can do with it what they will. They may choose to copy it and sell it. They may display their work or perform it in public and charge admission, or they can assign or sell the work to someone else. Individuals who have a copyright can also choose to do nothing with their work, if that is their desire. However, if someone comes along and takes the work and tries to use it in some way, that person is still in violation of the owner?s copyright. Copyrights cover published and unpublished work. Anyone who is in the creative arts arena should be very careful that they do not violate US Copyright Law. For that matter, anyone who is a fan of the creative arts should make sure they are not in violation of a copyright. Simple things like uploading, downloading and sharing music or movie files can result in serious charges and fines being brought against them. With the popularity of the Internet and file sharing software there many copyrights are currently being violated. Copyright owners are starting to take a stand against them and are hunting down the perpetrators. Be careful that you are not overstepping your boundaries and violating someone?s copyright law.