Copyright is among the most misunderstood online issues. Both websites and e-mails can have specific copyright issues that we need to consider. Copyright is an essential component of online law and it needs to be properly enforced. Many people would argue that they can save anything online. They would only need to right click and use the content the way they wish. However, it is important to know that just because users are able to do many things, it doesn’t mean that they can do it. We should be aware of the proper file creation. A file is created originally, when it is built from scratch, not copied from any source. In this case, users should be informed that the website or other original owner of the website still have the ownership of the digital product. Some people say that they can use any kind of content, as long as they note the name of the author. We should know that although we give credit where it is due, it is still need to personally ask the permission from the original author.
It is quite often that the original author doesn’t want to have their information posted at any area of the website. The author may not approve that our website is the proper venue for their content. It doesn’t mean because we choose to provide credit, we have obtained the permission from the author. Another mistake is to link the graphics on other website, so they will be displayed on ours. This is a simple mistake that we can do. Although we don’t actually download the picture and put it in our website, we still display others’ work in our website. We still need to get permission before we upload others’ works. In fact, the situation is actually worse, because we use others’ server and bandwidth resources to display file on our website. Many folks do this innocently, because it is very easy to get a URL of the website and link it to our own. It is always better to create our own unique pictures. Fortunately, there are free public images that can be used by anyone. Unique pictures are better because they can attract traffic from search engines; but we can still improve user experience by adding free images in our website.
We may also think that if we pay someone to create something for our website, we will definitely own the copyright for the graphics. But unfortunately, it is not always true. In this case, the agreement with the artist and content creator should state explicitly that any right will be transferred to us in whole. In this case, we need to have exclusive license for any kind of graphics. The moment something is crated, we should make sure that it is included in the previous written, legal and binding agreement. We shouldn’t consider it a legal fact that because we have paid for something, we will automatically own something.