Copyright Implications

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Date Submitted: 12/11/2010 02:02 PM

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Copyright Implications

Copyright Implications


Copyright is a type of protection given to authors of original works of authorship by the laws of the United States. The person who is the owner, creator or manufacturer of the material can make copies of the work; sell, rent, of giveaway copies; and create spin-offs of original work. When related to web development the owner or creator of the material can sell copies of code or templates, sell or giveaway graphics, and create a new graphic or Website from previous designs. Once material is tangible it is not absolutely necessary to obtain a copyright because it is automatically copyrighted and anyone can use the copyright symbol on original works. Copyrighted work protected on the Internet is the design and content of the Website including the graphics, links, video, audio, links, text, and markup language (Montecino, 1996).

“The Internet has been characterized as the largest threat to copyright since its inception. The Internet is awash in information, much of it with varying degrees of copyright protection. Copyrighted works on the net include news stories, software, novels, screenplays, graphics, pictures, Usenet messages and even email. In fact, the frightening reality is that almost everything on the Net is protected by copyright law” (Copyright Website, 2010, para. 1).

According to the law, courts can invoke harsh penalties on individuals who infringe on copyrighted material. Infringing on copyrighted material can incur hefty fines up to $150,000 if found liable. Web developers need to ask themselves three questions to decide if permission to use copyrighted work is wise (Copyright Crash Course, 2005).

1. “Is the work protected” (Copyright Crash Course, 2005, para. 12)?

2. “If the work is protected, do you wish to exercise one of the owner’s exclusive rights” (Copyright Crash Course, 2005, para. 18)?

3. “Is your use exempt or excused from liability for infringement” (Copyright Crash Course,...

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