How To Deal With Copyright Infringement?
How To Deal With Copyright Infringement?
It shall not be an overstatement to say that with the overabundance of information lying on the world wide web, copyright infringement is something that should not come as a surprise to you. This brings to light the fact that only those who are adequately armed with the right course of action on noticing a copyright infringement can adequately deal with it. The better informed and prepared you remain about copyright infringement and the laws governing it, the better are the chances of you preventing it.
In the light of what has been said above, it becomes very necessary that you know how to deal with copyright infringement. Here is a step by step guide to deal with copyright infringement:
Immediately after knowing that your content has been stolen, the first step is to track down the thief. It may happen that the content gets further stolen from the original thief and links and copies of your content float at a number of places on the internet which can make the task of tracking the original thief difficult. Another issue that makes tracking the original thief difficult is the presence of so many anonymous blogs. However, following location and resources can help in identifying the person:
· About Page
· Contact Page
· Footer notes
· Credit Page
· Email links in the page source code (search for “mailto”)
· Author Page
· In the web page source code meta tags
· Email forms
After identification of the thief, contact them with an aim of communicating that they have done wrong and they shall remove or modify the content. Your request will not only give you more information about the thief but also act as evidence if the matter escalates into a court case.
You may get variety of responses. Some people may acknowledge their mistake while others may not care and reject your request outright. It is wise to be calm and professional even if the response from the other side is distasteful.
After you have requested the thief to remove content, you may have to wait for sometime before they respond. Take the following actions while you wait:
Gather Information and Evidence
Gather and compile all the information about the website that stole your content. Create a paper trail by printing the evidence such as screenshots of your content on other website, your letter to the website administrator etc. along with dates. They will be your ammunition if need be.
No matter how much proof you have about your content being used by others, you first have to prove that you are the original owner of the material. To do this, here are a few suggestions:
· Take screen shots of original cache file with date and also take a printout.
· Take a screen shot of your MySQL database record.
· Screen capture or print copies of dated comments made in response to the original posting.
· Get a notarized copy of the article.
· Gather witnesses who read your blog/site consistently and can testify to the date of original post.
Be prepared for resistance
You must be ready for resistance from the thief. He may even send a reply that counters your claim of copyright infringement.
When humble requests do not work, it’s time to resort to legal action and use the arrows in your quiver that you have saved in the form of evidence of theft and other documents. Hire a professional copyright infringement lawyer to advocate for you in the court of law. A good attorney can get you relief from the court in the form of injunctions i.e stopping the infringing party from using your content anymore, damages i.e actual damages caused by the infringement and statuary damages or account of profits.
With the increasing number of websites and blogs in the internet, the website administrator is burdened with the need to generate content to compete with others on the net. Website administrators under such pressure are compelled to steal someone’s content and post it under their name. Besides online plagiarism, it is not uncommon to find intellectual properties of poets, writers and thinkers being stolen and republished under somebody else’s name. The tips mentioned above, if followed in letter and spirit, can go a long way in preparing you to deal with a copyright infringement.