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What is copyright infringement
What Is Copyright Infringement? The Layperson's Copyright Primer
Copyright laws are constantly changing, and knowing exactly what copyright infringement is, whether you?re creating an eBook, publishing articles, using music as a backtrack to your podcast - or what have you - is essential to selling your online media. Although the laws change from one jurisdiction to another, knowing the basic rules of copyright infringement will ensure you?re following the proper rules of engagement when it comes to creating your works. Before you make any final decisions regarding the use of a work that has been copyrighted, please contact a copyright attorney to ensure you?re following the law ? this will keep you from being sued or, even worse, punished in a court of law.
What is Copyright Infringement?
Copyright infringement, as defined by Wikipedia.org, states: ?Copyright infringement (or copyright violation) is the unauthorized use of material that is protected by intellectual property rights law particularly the copyright in a manner that violates one of the original copyright owner's exclusive rights, such as the right to reproduce or perform the copyrighted work, or to make derivative works that build upon it. The slang term bootleg (derived from the use of the shank of a boot for the purposes of smuggling) is often used to describe illicitly copied material.?
So, what is copyright infringement in plain English? It means that if you?re not allowed to use something, then don?t use it ? plain and simple. It can be very simple to get permission to use a work ? many times you?ll be able to use a ?sample? of music or excerpt of written work for a nominal fee, or small attribution. However, if you do not have the permission of the copyright holder ? whether it?s an author or a publishing house ? you can be sued for copyright infringement or worse.
What is Copyright Infringement in America?
In many jurisdictions, such as the United States of America, this act is known as a strict liability crime or tort (a tort is a civil wrong ? not a criminal wrong). This means that the person who infringes the copyright - whether intentionally or not - will be responsible for the damage or loss. Also, the prosecutor (in criminal court) or plaintiff (in civil court) must only prove that the act of copying was committed by the defendant ? they do not need to prove guilty intent. This means, even if you had no intention of committing copyright fraud or infringement, you can (and in present times, in many cases, WILL) be prosecuted, even if you used the material in good faith.
What is Copyright Infringement in action?
Many cases of copyright infringement are difficult to see to the layperson, because the violation is not limited to exact copying. In many cases, when something is inspired by another thing ? such as in music, when the inspiration of one song is used to create an entirely different song ? it?s difficult to see where the new product or ?thing? has crossed the line to something illegal. Some works aren?t even protected by copyright, such as compilation of facts that lack the creativity necessary to be covered by copyright, or works that are in the public domain because the copyright has expired. Knowing the difference is often very difficult to see, and because of this we?ve seen a number of copyright infringement cases in recent years, especially in tandem with the music industry.
As you can see, copyright infringement is a very difficult, albeit necessary, act to define. However, if you make sure that you?re using works that are in the public domain, or have long since been out of copyright (think Beethoven or Frankenstein) you?ll be safe. Do you fair research, and if you have any questions contact a copyright lawyer and ask ?what is copyright infringement? to learn the most up-to-date information for your jurisdiction.
Copyright lawyer trademark Learning about a Copyright Lawyer Trademark You may need a copyright lawyer trademark if you own your own website or are an author of a book. If you haven?t already spoke with one you may want to do it very soon to find out if your articles/site can be trademarked or if it is already taken. One way to make sure you have the copyright to all of your work is by making sure you have the little ?c? inside the circle at the end of your article or the bottom of your webpage. For instance a slogan can be considered a trademark, think of the milk commercial, remember that certain phrase? You can bet money that had a copyright lawyer trademark it for the milk company. There are many popular household products that have been trademarked; you probably wouldn?t recognize the product without it. Drive down the road and look at how many trademarks you see on restaurants, each one of those famous places had a copyright lawyer trademark their signature. Many products that may need protecting may include songs, products such as household or commercial, designs, ads, etc. If you think the idea is a good one, it probably needs some form of protection and the best person to help you with that is a copyright lawyer trademark. There are actually three forms of trademark that you probably weren?t aware of which is why a good copyright lawyer trademark will come in handy. There is common trademark which is just like it sounds. A state trademark, which means you, filed your trademark with the state in which you reside. An example for this might be a company using their city in their business name. Third is the federal registration trademark, this is a registration that can be renewed every year or forever. Someone that has a website that is becoming popular may want to make sure they reserve their trademark forever so that someone else doesn?t buy it down the road. Keep in mind that just because you buy a domain name doesn?t mean you actually own the trademark, you might actually see another site with the same name. If you don?t want this to be the case, have a copyright lawyer trademark it. A great example of showing you how a copyright lawyer trademark works would be by looking at the recent celebrities that bought the trademarks to their children?s names so no one can cash in on their names. Believe it or not even a copyright lawyer can have a trademark, that?s right they may have their own site or logo on a business card. In this case they?ve probably done all that fancy paperwork that you are getting started to do, which means they?ll have first hand knowledge when it comes time to help you out. This should actually make you feel a lot more comfortable than dealing with a lawyer that just knows the job; this one actually has experience that will help you. Know what you want to be yours and how long you want it; if it is something that you just can?t live without or you know will be worth something someday you may want to hire a copyright lawyer to trademark it. This way it is always yours and you never have to worry about someone else using it, they will always have to have your permission. Not to mention if they ever try suing you for using it you can always prove that you are the owner. Protect your stuff by getting a copyright lawyer trademark all things that matter.