Copyright Questions

Discussion in 'Help Requests' started by Kate Ellery, Sep 9, 2023.

  1. Kate Ellery

    Kate Ellery Supreme Member
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    On the crafty forum where I’m a member one of the mods who works in an office is banging on about copyright ….to be brutally honest she’s turning members away from posting IMO with her iron fist approach.

    But what is termed as copyright on this forum , ? yep I know if you quote something out of a published book / internet you are required to quote where that statement / quote came from.

    That was shoved down our throat pretty well when I went back to a government run adult further education
    for my work in the disability / community field , of course that was way back in 2002 when computers were just getting warmed up , so a lot of our study ( homework) was taken from / learned from library books.
    so it was easy to add a quote at bottom of class presentation / written assignment where we took the ** from

    however when it comes down to pictures that have prob traveled around the world numerous times
    weather they be funnies or everyday pictures where do we stand with them ?

    I usually try to stick to my own photos ,but I do copy stuff off the net when chatting about my interests in preserving / fermenting / garden and food / home / travel in general.
    @Ken Anderson
     
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  2. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    Don't pretend that you have written something that you found published elsewhere. If you're going to quote something from another website, it's a good idea to include a link to the site, and never quote entire articles or pages. Paraphrasing is usually okay, but it's still not good form to pretend that you came up with it yourself.

    There is the concept of fair use, which allows someone to quote sections of a written piece as a reference when talking about the subject. If you don't have anything of your own to say about it, then there's no point in quoting it here.

    As far as photos go, you shouldn't take them from someone else's website without attribution. Even then, the owner of the photo might ask for it to be removed, which hasn't happened in the 20-some years we've been in operation. When it comes to memes and things that are shared by hundreds of people on social media, I suppose an argument could be made that whoever created the image still has rights to it, but that would be quite a chore.

    While it's easy to get buried in technicalities. we're probably safe as long as we adhere to the spirit of copyright laws, which is that if I create something to draw people to my website, then people shouldn't steal it without leaving a link to my website. Even then, I could ask for it to be taken down if I don't want people to read it on another website even if they do leave a link. Some people place original photos on their website, where they offer them for sale. Usually, these are watermarked but the watermark itself doesn't count as attribution. Rather, it is there to establish ownership.

    We have some expert photographers here, so when someone posts a photo, I will assume that it's original if not otherwise attributed. I can't possibly track down every photo or text that is posted here, however.

    I don't participate in Facebook much anymore but when I did, I posted quite a few memes that I created myself. I enjoyed seeing other people re-post them. Others might feel more proprietary about their stuff. I've seen Facebook pages that ask people not to copy and paste memes from the site, although most encourage sharing them because the share feature on Facebook includes a link and adds value to the original page.

    The things that people tend to be the most sensitive of are when someone steals original textual content pretending that they have written it themselves, and those who copy professional photos from one website to post on another. Often, particularly on photo sites, their policies for copying photos and attribution are stated on the site. Please don't violate them.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 9, 2023
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  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    Overall, though, I don't concern myself with what goes on in other forums. Their concerns are mine only when someone brings them here.
     
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  4. Kate Ellery

    Kate Ellery Supreme Member
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    sorry I was only referring to the other site ,as an example ……of what’s being said about copyright ……incase the same applies here as well @Ken Anderson
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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  6. Sam Calabria

    Sam Calabria Well-Known Member
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    Pragmatically, unless you profit, make actual money, from the use of someone else's material, no court will take the case.

    In order for there to be wrong that law enforcement would be concerned about, you basically have to make money from the theft of other people's work.

    So, that is the legal side of things.

    As far as what technically violates the law, you can read books and articles about copyright issues, both generally and online.

    I am a former stand-up comedian. And I have written comedy. And yes, I have had material stolen from me. One thing I wrote became a very big national commercial. I should have been compensated about $20,000 for that work. I got exactly zero. So, yes, that made me mad.

    But I post original comedy blurbs and other material online, fully aware that my work is not going to be protected. It is just the nature of the beast here.

    If you are a professional writer and don't want your material stolen, you really don't post anything on any social media, at all. So that is more what the professionals do. Or, well, don't do.

    If someone is posting original material online, it really means that they are not a professional in the field. Or, like me, they will share a few little things online, while reserving professional writing for professional formats.

    So, if, on social media, someone is complaining about copyright infringement, in these kinds of forums? It's just a little bit nit-pickey, as far as I am concerned.

    I do believe in being as respectful and courteous as possible. And, ideally, I do think it is best to never share other people's material. That is, you know, ideally.

    I am a disabled person. I live in a lot of pain. Over the years, I have lost contact with just about all the friends and relatives I have known. I live a very isolated life. If sharing a quote from Shakespeare, helps get me through the day, that is about the best I can do. And I always reference the source, the website, whatever.

    If you post a quote from Shakespeare, I guess, technically you would have to get permission from the source that published the book with that quote. Oh, McMillian, 1948, the Complete Works of Shakespeare...whatever.

    Pragmatically, to track all that down? It would take forever and it would not be worth posting the quote, owing to how much work it would take to get the permissions, etc.

    You Tube would not exist, at all, if rules were really obeyed. And, personally, I think the world would be a better place with obedience to the rules. And if that means that things like You Tube would not exist? Ultimately, the world would probably be a better place.

    If this were 1947, being ill, like I am, I would have friends and relatives calling me, coming over the house and interacting with me...you know, like humans do. I have none of that. I had an accident in 2003. Was close to death for 4 months. Zero calls from other people. One person came by, just once. And when he found out how ill I was, he never had any contact with me again. Much of the disabled community has these kinds of experiences.

    If I had a different life, I would be completely scrupulous, especially as a person who has had material stolen from me.

    So, those are my thoughts on the matter...
     
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  7. John Brunner

    John Brunner Senior Staff
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    On a more pragmatic note, I believe that the law requires that the violator be served written notice to remedy the transgression. If you fix it, then there's no further action taken.

    It's sort of like civil trespassing...you must be told to leave and then refuse to leave before you've broken the law.

    Regarding your life situation: That sucks. I wish it were better for you.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  8. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    People don't know what to say or how to react, so they are uncomfortable. That doesn't excuse it or make it easier but that's human nature, I suppose.

    As for copyright laws, I'm not so concerned about the legal issues as I am about the ethical ones. Shakespeare is probably in the public domain, as is a whole bunch of stuff, and fair use covers much of the rest of it. People build websites (not social media) in order to display their work, and sometimes these are professional photos, paintings, or whatever. While prominent artists can make sales without the Internet, those trying to earn a living somewhere in between, on the professional spectrum, will turn to online sales. Most won't mind their photos being shared if a link is left to the site where it can be purchased, since the value is in the hard copy.

    However, people who build websites have to include original content in order for the site to go anywhere in the SERPs, so when someone comes along and steals their content, it is devalued, and if the search engines come across the stolen copy first, they might consider the original to be plagiarism, and the author's original content ends up hurting him in the SERPs.
     
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  9. Mary Stetler

    Mary Stetler Veteran Member
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    I remember when Disney came down hard on anyone, even little kids, for using a picture of Mickey Mouse or other characters for whatever.
    Toys R Us tried too, back when they were a big store, but there are a lot of R Us's around now since texting. And I am not sure Toys R Us is still around.
     
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  10. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Senior Staff
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    Many years ago, when I lived in a teeny-tiny north Idaho town (Bonners Ferry, pop. About 2,000) we had a store called the “Pink Panther” which was painted all a bright pink on the outside walls.
    The movie company (or whomever owned the copyright) made the store change their name, which seemed pretty silly, since it was just a small local store in a rural community, and not something that would affect the copyright at all.
    Anyway, it was renamed the “Pink Lion” instead, and all was well after that; but the whole thing seemed rather ridiculous. I have no idea how they even discovered the store, it was back in the mid-70’s, so there was no website or any kind of online presence.
     
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  11. John Brunner

    John Brunner Senior Staff
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    I thought for sure McDonald's sued a Scottish mom & pop restaurant whose existence predated the American chain because the Scottish restaurant used the last name of the owner (McDonald) before McDonalds the burger chain even existed. But for the life of me, I cannot find any reference to it at all.
     
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  12. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Senior Staff
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    Sometimes it's just a matter of who can afford the better lawyers or who has the most political pull. On the international stage, when America Online was coming up in its heyday, they sued an Internet business in Africa through the international courts that had predated America Online for using AOL (Africa Online). Although Africa Online had been using AOL before America Online, they had to give up their rights to it.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 16, 2023

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