Importance of Registering a Copyright on a Web Site

Submitted by Kevin Taylor | Category: Web Services | Published on Jan 10, 2011
It is always important for all online business entrepreneurs and webmasters to know in detail about copyright norms and applications. This article provides in detail information regarding copyright website.

Most Internet entrepreneurs, professional web developers, and designers have one purpose in mind. Simply stated, their goal is to design a website allowing someone to share knowledge, ideas, and products with others. Whether the purpose for the website is to promote collaboration, provoke thought, or simply share information, there is a substantial risk to publishing proprietary information without proper protection. Wise webmasters know the old adage to “not be pennywise and pound foolish!”

A web site is undoubtedly the product of many hundreds or thousands of hours of work and generally a substantial financial investment. Websites contain valuable intellectual property that needs to be protected. Many times the concern is not a normal user copying and pasting material to some friends. More often, it is your competitors taking verbiage verbatim to use on a website that may eventually procure some of your own would-be clientele. Some people believe that copyright laws are not important and aren’t as valuable on the internet as in the traditional world of print. This is a tragic misconception.

Copyright laws apply equally to works published on the web and in the world of printed matter. The owner or webmaster of another web site could easily plagiarize or steal content and display the material on a second web site. If that were to happen, would the original owner of the material have a way to prove ownership? Some people believe that a web site is actually considered copyrighted at the time of the final development. No official registration is necessary as just including a copyright notice on the web site is supposed to prohibit others from copying any of the material without the owner’s permission.

However, there is no way of proving to whom the content belongs. There are many unscrupulous people who find nothing wrong with “borrowing” (without permission) from someone else' hard work. It’s one person’s word against another. The law provides for legal copyright registration as a means of protection provided to the legitimate owners of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical (including any sounds and sound recordings), audiovisual materials, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.

Copyright registration would provide a public record of the basic facts on a site and thus makes proving copyright infringement much easier. By legally registering the contents of a website, the author of the intellectual property is provided with a public record of ownership. This gives the owner greater protection in case of a lawsuit or other infringement pursuits. Every word, diagram and picture is included in the written copyright record.

A majority of web site creators routinely get a registered copyright upon the completion of the site to protect intellectual endeavors and protect themselves from one of the most common online crimes committed today. Unless the web site copyright is registered, the full protection of U.S. Copyright Law is lost. When a business owner, blogger, or webmaster weighs the time and money invested in the web site against the small cost to obtain federal web site copyright registration, The decision to obtain copyright registration seems like a simple decision to make. Obtaining a federal web site copyright registration gives the owner a powerful weapon to use against copyright breakers. There are a variety of ways to minimize the ease in which content can be hijacked from a website. There are also other ways to protect special text and pictures.

Some sites are programmed so that it is impossible to copy materials from the site. However, none of these methods are completely foolproof for a person desiring to use the copy in order to fill pages on his or her own website. Registering a web site copyright before an infringement occurs makes the plagiarized site owner eligible for damages equal to the actual damages plus the infringer’s profits and also all attorney fees and costs.

A small copyright registration investment can earn a court judgment for a great deal more money. The copyright registration is a powerful weapon to greatly reduce, or better yet, cease infringement. Many owners of unregistered websites do not take legal action because the cost to the owner will be more than can be recouped from such action. Sometimes stating that the web site is copyrighted scares plagiarists off but that does not have the same effect as a legally registered copyright. It is important to know that only the works included in the original deposit to the Copyright Office are included in the copyright. Any major update(s) to the web site after filing the copyright will result in the need to reregister the copyright for the desire to protect the new material. In some cases, an online work which is frequently updated may constitute an automated database.

A group of updates, published or unpublished, to a database, covering up to a 3-month period within the same calendar year, may be combined in a single registration. “Group registration (a single registration covering multiple issues published on different dates) is available for serials (published weekly or less often) and daily newsletters (published more often than weekly), including those published online.” The requirements vary, depending on the type of work. Many of Expert Website Services clients choose to have Expert Website Services Renew their legal copyrights once each year to legally protect new content which may have been added since the previous filing.

The owner of a web site which has a registered copyright may be entitled to statutory damages which could range from $750 to $30,000 if determined by the court, even if damages cannot be proven. If willful infringement can be proven, the court may award up to $150,000 per violation. One cannot get attorney’s fees for a copyright infringement action unless the web site’s copyright is registered before the copyright infringement or within three months of first publication.


Find more details at Copyright Web Site at official website -  Las Vegas Web Design


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