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Understanding Copyright Infringement

June 9, 2016

As an author and artist, I have become aware of the need to protect artistic content from piracy. Do you realize how often someone’s work is copied, or used without permission?  Any time a person copies material from a website without permission, or uploaded their favorite music to shareware, it is a violation of copyrights. Someone with say,”But, I included a link to the original page, so it’s not copyright infringement.”

Actually it is. Don’t get infringement confused with plagiarism. I understand that you are not saying the content you are using is your own; however, if you use the content without permission, it is still an infringement, as it violates the principles of fair use. No one may upload a book to distribute on his or her seller site, which the author did not okay. The same goes for music, or videos.  If you did not create it, you must have permission to use, or distribute.

Content is not free to use simply because you came across it on the internet. I’m beggin’ you; please do not copy and paste entire pages. This is not good note taking, and can easily result in plagiarism (which is claiming a work as your own, when it is not). I hope that all my readers take the time to learn about copyright infringement and plagiarism, so that neither of them is committed.

Please understand that copyright infringement is against the law, and may result in fines of as much as $150,000. To protect your work, always include the  copyright notice . Example: Copyright © 2012 Cynthia Maher

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