5 Copyright Misconceptions: Are You in Violation Without Knowing?
With so many different ways to access data and information sources, it can be all too easy to cross the line and breach copyright rules without even knowing it or intending to break the law.
Keeping up to date with the latest business and legal developments is always a good idea, and you can do that when you use a site like lawmanaging, but you might not be that familiar with current copyright limitations.
Here is a look at some of the typical misconceptions that could create a problem, leaving you searching for a copyright infringement lawyer California, or similar in your area if you are found to have breached copyright regulations.
It is fine to use third-party content if I acknowledge the original author
Wrong. This is one of the most common misconceptions when it comes to standard copyright rules.
The bottom line is that it is not enough to simply cite your source when you copy their content in any documents or presentation material that you produce.
Even though you are acknowledging where the content you are using has originated from it is still a copyright requirement that you seek permission from the copyright holder.
It won’t matter that much if I don’t seek permission
One of the fundamental reasons why copyright laws exist is that this level of protection is designed to help encourage new and unique works.
Even if you are not widely distributing material that you have copied without permission you are still infringing the legal rights of the originator who holds the copyright.
It also leaves you exposed to the risk of prosecution, either on a personal or corporate level.
You didn’t get a reply to your request
Another common misconception is that you requested authority to use copyrighted material but didn’t receive a response, so used the material on the assumption that the owner is not that concerned about its further use.
It is important to understand that a lack of response to your copyright request does not remove the need to obtain permission.
Sourced on the internet
Many resources are accessed via a website but it would be wrong to assume that anything you find on the internet can be reused unless you see specific information on the site that draws your attention to the fact it is copyrighted material.
The default position should always be that any material on the internet is copyrighted unless the website states that the material is in the public domain and okay to be copied.
What about fair use?
In copyright law, there is a term that refers to fair use and this does permit some copying and distribution of copyrighted material.
A typical example of this would be to use a few sentences from a copyrighted document rather than copying large sections of the material.
It is feasible that the so-called fair use wording in the Copyright Laws might enable you to use a small amount of copyrighted work without getting into trouble, as long as you cite the original source.
However, you won’t always be able to claim you are engaging in fair use and assume that you won’t be in breach of copyright laws.
A lack of knowledge is not a valid reason for breaching copyright laws. Make sure you have a good understanding of what you can and can’t do when it comes to copying material so that you don’t end up with a copyright problem that could have been avoided.