Law

How do you protect your copyright works?

June 01, 2020 Paul Brennan
Law
How do you protect your copyright works?
Chapters
Law
How do you protect your copyright works?
Jun 01, 2020
Paul Brennan

If you produce quality writing, artwork, training materials or other creative works then listen and learn how to protect your works.


(c) Paul Brennan 2020. All rights reserved. 

Show Notes Transcript

If you produce quality writing, artwork, training materials or other creative works then listen and learn how to protect your works.


(c) Paul Brennan 2020. All rights reserved. 

How do you protect your copyright works?

If you produce quality writing, artwork or training materials that are desirable (financial or otherwise), some enterprising person may copy your work. Copying “original” work is a “copyright infringement”. The easiest way to deal with this is violently. However, this is illegal, even if it is comparatively cheaper than law.

A copyright lawyer can spend lots of your money shoring up your case, unless you have taken certain precautions.

Expect these defences:

• “You gave me permission.” This can be implied. 
• “You copied me” or, more simply, “Prove you own it.” Proving that you own it can be costly, and surprisingly difficult. When your lawyer suggests that you call your mother as a witness, you know that you are in dire straits. 

Another defence that is often raised is, “I didn’t know it was copied.” However, copyright infringement does not need intention; the act is enough.

The procedures to protect published books are fairly well established.  However here are five things you can do to protect other types of copyright works:

1. Keep your rough drafts; this is good evidence that you created it and easy to do if your work is created on your computer. 
2. Use written agreements, called “licences”, when letting other people use your works. 
3. Use ©, your name and the year – you do not need to register, and there is no charge to do this; just write it on your work. This warns people that they are dealing with your copyright work.
4. Get written assignments of any copyright work that you buy from someone else. 

A copyright infringement win can be very satisfying, because not only does it sound great but it also gives the impression that there is something worth taking. However, do not expect a financial killing, unless you have really suffered tangible loss. And by that, I don’t mean hurt feelings.
 
Finally, you will be relieved to hear that the quality of your work is not put under the microscope. In the law of copyright, the courts protect your work, however lousy it is. However, if your work stinks, the good news is that you do not have a copyright problem. Copyright infringers are just too busy, I’m afraid. 

(c) Paul Brennan 2010-2020. All rights reserved.