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Plagiarism, copyrighting, and trademarks (1 Viewer)

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Plagiarism, copyrighting and trademarks

Should you be worried about posting your work on writingforums.com?

I can't assure you that people won't try to copy your work, but if they do you can sue them. This forum's database can be used as evidence, and the automatic copyright law* would be in effect. If you posted the story before they got it published/posted/copyrighted, then you can sue them, as your automatic copyright would be in effect before their's.

Any writer who steals another writer's work is risking their reputation as well as being sued. Also, people usually don't post their best work, because if they don't need help with it, why post it here asking for advice? And people usually only post a small portion of their work, so there really isn't much to steal, anyway.

So there really isn't an advantage to stealing someone else's work off these forums. I wouldn't worry about it.

*"Anytime that you create a creative, copyrightable work and it is fixed on a tangible medium (ie, paper, videotape, etc...) it is copyrighted. You don't have to register the work to have copyright protection. Altough registration brings other benefits such as the immediate right to sue and potential statutory damages, notwithstanding actual damages. So in sum, once you create it, it is copyright protected."

from http://lp.findlaw.com/

“…you can make the copyright symbol by holding down alt and then typing 0169 on the number pad

See: ©2004”

From Bobothegoat.

-For $30 USD, you can copyright your work with the Library of Congress.

-The real difficulty, though, comes not with copyrighting the actual work, but the ideas.

Free-definition.com said:
Copyrights do not protect ideas or facts, however, but only the particular expression of an idea. A copyright on the cartoon character Mickey Mouse, for example, would not prevent others from creating talking mice, but only from too closely copying the character and traits of that talking mouse in particular.

Click here for more.

Copyright term and Public Domain. (Note: Just because something is considered public domain shouldn't give one the right to pilage it at will without giving some due credit to the original source. Call it 'Writer's Etiquette'. See also, Homage vs. Rip-off.)

US Copyright Office Website said:
How is a copyright different from a patent or a trademark?
Copyright protects original works of authorship, while a patent protects inventions or discoveries. Ideas and discoveries are not protected by the copyright law, although the way in which they are expressed may be. A trademark protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs identifying the source of the goods or services of one party and distinguishing them from those of others.

Copyright protection subsists from the time the work is created in fixed form. The copyright in the work of authorship immediately becomes the property of the author who created the work. Only the author or those deriving their rights through the author can rightfully claim copyright.

"(Using trademarked names in your writing)... according to Writer's Digest, it's:

NOT OKAY to say, "He grabbed a Kleenex and blew his nose."
ALSO NOT OKAY to say, "He grabbed a kleenex and blew his nose."

IS OKAY to say, "He grabbed a Kleenex facial tissue and blew his nose."

As long as you don't diminish the brand, you're okay legally. Always refer to what a Kleenex is, and always capitalize the brand.

Of course, that just looks like product placement to me. I prefer:

"He grabbed a tissue and blew his nose."

Why advertise?"

From mswmedia.

Also see, http://www.copyright.gov/ (courtesy of Oz)

http://www.sfwa.org/writing/copyrite.htm (courtesy of Creative Insanity)



Trademark infringement:



UK Copyright law

Austrialian Copyright law

Canadian Copyright
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