Copywriters Accused of Infringing Copyright

February 19, 2011
By Michael Smith on February 19, 2011 8:54 PM |

iStock_000009859856XSmaller.jpgA few days ago I wrote about a whole raft of copyright infringement lawsuits that have been filed by a company called Righthaven, LLC. My hope was that drawing attention to those lawsuits might educate business owners and nonprofit organizations about the potential legal problems associated with posting copyrighted material on their websites.

Since then I learned of a company that recently paid $4000 to settle an accusation of infringing the copyright of photograph that would have cost about $10 to license. The company is in the business of writing copy for web sites. Yes, that's correct -- they're copywriters. Apparently, the problem arose when one of them pulled a photo from the internet and placed it on a customer's blog under the mistaken belief that if the photo didn't have a copyright notice, then it was in the public domain and thus fair game. If you read my previous blog entry, you already know how wrong that is. Now the copywriters do, too.

You can read the entire story here.