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The DMCA Copyright Agreement Protects All Forms of Online Work

Updated on March 7, 2018
Lady Lorelei profile image

Mother of 2 daughters and grandmother of 7, I strive daily to achieve an optimum level of health and happiness. Life is all about balance.


The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)

In 1997 U.S. Laws were put into place to protect those who post material on the Internet. These first controls with known as the No Electronic Theft' Act.

To further increase online safety The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was created to strengthen the intellectual rights of those individuals who post material on the Internet.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was passed through U.S. congress October 12, 1998 and signed into law October 28, 1998 making individuals who unlawfully plagiarize online material financially liable for their actions.

No matter how you spell it - It is still plagiarism.

You can pretty it up, use what you believe is a good excuse, or just claim naivety but plagerize, plagiarize, plageriz, plagarize, plagerise, plagairize, plagarizm, plagerism, plajerism is still plagiarism no matter how you spell it.

Have your words, art, or photos ever been plagiarized?

Have your words, art, or photos ever been plagiarized?

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Plagiarism Occurs When You Use Another Persons Work Without Their Permission

It can be all too easy to copy and paste, improperly quote, or intentionally plagiarize the material on an online website.

Sometimes this plagiarism occurs because of a lack of knowledge as to how an article or image should be properly cited. Occasionally the plagiarism is intentional.

No matter what the circumstances are the act of plagiarizing or improperly quoting an online article, photograph, or image, can get you into one big bad mess of trouble. It is theft and it is not acceptable. It can also leave you financial liable for the use of this material.

There is a right way and a wrong way to cite another persons online work, and it is very important that you know which is which.

Photographs and Illustrations are Also Protected


Always Correctly Credit Your Sources

There really is a right way and a wrong way to copy and paste or quote another person's online article. Always read the complete web content to see if the author, artist, or photographer has listed any instructions as to whether or not they will allow their work to be used elsewhere.

If you cannot find anything listed on the website which says that you are free to use the work, then consider the work off limits for you to copy and paste elsewhere, or you may be held financially liable for the use of that work on your web site.

When you wish to create a direct written quote from a website:

a) Never copy and paste large sections of the article.

It is generally acceptable to quote about 200 characters or two lines of text from an online article with a credit and link back to the source. Any more than this amount can be considered by the author or creator of the content as plagiarism.

b) Always clearly link back to the original article.

You must in no way misrepresent the work as your own. You are always required to provide a link back to the original article, generally within or immediately before or after a quoted text.

Important Links to Help You Protect Your Online Work

Find out who is hosting the website so that you can send in a DMCA copyright notice to have the website remove for plagiarism of your work. Lookup

Always Cite a Source of Information

Even if you do not use a direct quote, but instead simply garner information from an article, then you are still responsible for citing your source of information. You can usually do this by providing a link to the article at the foot of your page under the heading "Sources".

Don't think that you can simply change a few words in each sentence and consider it your own creation. This is known as article spinning and it is still categorized as plagiarism.

You will have to use your own creativity, your own unique keywords, and at least a couple of sources to create an original work.

Try to find at least three sources for your articles as this will show you the different ways in which the topic can be discussed and hopefully also a couple of unique viewpoints on your subject. List your sources or provide a link back to them.

The DMCA Copyright Agreement Protects Online Works


Have you ever plagiarized someone else's work?

Have you ever plagiarized someone else's work?

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If in Doubt - Don't do it

Don't ever simply presume that an online picture, photo, or other image is free for you to use.

Online photographs, pictures, drawings, and other images all fall under the DMCA copyright agreement act. These images are not available for you to copy and use on your site unless the website they are placed on specifically states that you many use them.

Generally any photograph or image that is available for copy and paste will hold a creative commons license on them stating that you are able to use them in some way. Be absolutely sure that you follow these guidelines exactly as they are expressed by the contributor.

If you can find no mention of a creative commons license or information stating that the image resides in the Public Domain then consider the image to be off limits. You should not copy or use this image in any way, shape, or form.

Don't be discouraged though as there are many ways still to acquire online photographs, pictures, and other forms of images. Many pictures fall into the category of public domain and these are completely free for public use.

Be sure to link back to the site that provides you with the free photographs or images. It's the professional thing to do, and to be a truly good writer one should write and quote professionally at all times.

Proper grammar is important so check your work or have a friend proof read for you.

Writing Online is a Great Way to Have Your Computer Work for You

So please do not copy and paste, improperly quote, or intentionally plagiarize this article. I would really appreciate it.

© 2011 Lorelei Cohen


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