Skeet Shares
stuff I find interesting
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Legally blogged
I've seen a lot of talk lately in the blogsphere about the legal rights of bloggers. We may (or may not) think of our blogs as a journal wherein we talk to our friends and others who happen to wander by. The fact is that we are publishers and anyone can see what we write. Some people may take offense, whether because we've stepped on their own toes or because they believe we've somehow caused public harm by what we've written. Bloggers have been known to innocently place protected material on their blogs. We can get sued for that, you know. Some bloggers blatantly steal writing and images and claim them for their own. What are you supposed to do if someone else is taking credit for your work? All of these scenarios can cause us headaches, and may end up getting us dragged into court.

Someone recently gave me a link to a site that helps us sort this out. If I could remember who that was I'd thank them by name, but I've forgotten now. Please don't sue me! The Electronic Frontier Foundation outlines bloggers' rights and liabilities. Every blogger should study the site, then add it to their blogroll or bookmarks for easy access. They do not claim to give legal advice for specific cases, but provide guidlines that could keep you out of a sticky situation. I've only read a small amount of the material that EFF makes available and have already learned some very useful information. Check them out. Think about joining them. Send them a check! They're doing a good thing for all of us!

January 14, 2007 - Update! This post has been linked to the Postie Carnival. Check it out!

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Blogger whimsicalnbrainpan said...
Thanks for sharing this with us Skeet. Seems like it will be valuable information to have.

Blogger Allan said...
I've been plagarized before- wrote an email, they Paypal'd me 12 the company doesn't pay anymore.
I'd wager every blog gets plagarized at some point.
Today, the 'real' news is a parody of journalism, so I think cribbing from CNN,AP,Rueters etc is covered under Fair Use.

Blogger CyberCelt said...
EFF is a great site. Basically, you should not post over two sentences of another's work without permission and it should be in quotation marks.

Pictures are a real problem. But then, I am not great talent, so I do not care if someone takes my pictures from my blogs.

I have discovered bloggers using my feed and not giving me credit. I would have never known if I did not have feedburner stats.

More than anything, I get made at the flogs (fake blogs). They make us all look bad.

Blogger Amy said...
Thanks for pointing us to this great resource. I take blogging so lightly, so it's good to be reminded that there can be consequences.

Blogger Lisa said...
I know you've seen my post regarding blogger issues since you commented. Your entry completely ties in with my post.

We all need to keep in mind that we also have rights!

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