Are explicit copyright notices necessary for weblogs and web pages?

Dave, I see some sites with and some sites without a copyright line. Do you know if someone has to go through an official process before adding this line? Like (C) 2002-2004 by Dave Taylor, etc …

In general, copyright law is defined by the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, which covers written materials, photographs, illustrations, sketches, etc., but does not cover “news of the day or miscellaneous events that have the character of mere elements of press information “.

Some important points of the Berne Convention: Copyright lasts for the life of the author and fifty years after his death. There is also fair use, which allows (in typically vague legal terms) “citations of a work that has already been legally made available to the public, provided its production is consistent with fair practice.”

However, here is the most important paragraph of this extensive international agreement: “In order that the author of a literary or artistic work protected by this Convention, in the absence of proof to the contrary, is considered as such and, consequently, has right to institute infringement procedures in the countries of the Union, it will be enough for his name to appear in the work in the usual way “.

This means that you do not need to have an explicit copyright notice to have a legally enforceable copyright, as long as your name appears on the work as the author. Anonymous material is covered too, but you can read it yourself if you’re interested.

US Copyright Office clarifies how Berne Convention applies to US copyright law: “Use of a copyright notice is no longer required by law from the US, although often beneficial. “

Continuing with the quote from the Copyright Office: “The use of the notice may be important
because it informs the public that the work is protected by copyright, identifies the
copyright owner and shows the year of first publication. Also, at the event
that a work is infringed, if the work is properly notified, the court will not give
How important is the filing of a defendant for an innocent offense defense?
that is to say, they did not realize that the work was protected. An innocent
The infringement defense may result in a reduction of the damages that the copyright owner
otherwise I would receive “. [ref []]

Lastly, if you decide to include a copyright notice, and you certainly would
I recommend it, so it should have three elements:

  1. The © symbol (the letter C in a circle) or the word “Copyright” or the abbreviation “Copr.”. Notice that the sequence of a capital C in parentheses (that is, (VS)) it is no a valid copyright symbol.
  2. The year of the first publication
  3. The name of the copyright owner of the work or an abbreviation by which the name can be recognized.

An example of a good copyright is © 2005 Dave Taylor. (tip: you can
get copyright symbol in HTML using character entity ©)

Finally, websites that have extensive original content can be valuable for
Registering your copyrighted material with the US Copyright Office, although it is more
of a legal formality and is not a condition of copyright protection under the law. Yes
if you follow this avenue, start by reading about the literary register
It works, in which you will find that it costs only $ 30 per item to
copyright registration.

Tip: If you want to register your whole website, please print it all in book form, then
register the entire collection of articles as one book for a one-time payment of $ 30, instead of
$ 30 per page or article. If it is a Weblog, you may find it by registering it in
the aegis of serials and periodicals is your best strategy.

Finally, this is a lot of information to absorb, and even as a professional writer I get
confused about things too, particularly about the vaguely worded “fair use” clauses
in copyright law. However, it seems that a little extra protection for your work
as a smart strategy, so I recommend that you include a
notice on all your posted content.

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