Archive for the ‘copyright infringement’ Category

Last night I was attacked by Snopes via email stating that I had infringed on their copyright by quoting them, even with crediting them through a link for my readers. I immediately complied and removed it, but not without putting in a statement of the removal because it directly affected the climate and argument support of dispelling the myth (that was being circulated around and received as an email) argued in my blog posting.

As a researcher for many, many years (been doing research papers since I was in 2nd grade) and a blogger for the past 4-5 years, I have utilized quotes and provided direct links to those quotes wherever possible, especially if the information was found on the internet, as any responsible writer/blogger would. Some quote that Benjamin Franklin said, for instance, wasn’t necessarily linked only because that information could be available on so many resources that would be too numerous to list and would seem to be falling in some sort of public domain pool by now of great quotes, so long as we make sure that we credit Ben Franklin with having said that quote.

I can see if I quoted someone and claimed it as my own work as being copyright infringement indeed; however, when you quote someone AND provide the link to where you can see the original work, should be only the ethical thing to do. In fact, claiming that the quoted material lifted as one’s own would actually fall under plagiarism, which is why every student is told throughout time, make sure that you not only indicate that you are quoting someone, but you are giving them credit for what they have said.

It would seem, then, that the original composer of the original written article would proved that you had quoted them without the intent of providing support to their written material and/or that the person who had lifted a quote from them had the intent of claiming the material as their own. The world wide web is a very fast structure that is filled with people interlocking their stories with others. To say that one has to get permission to quote someone else when it is out there for the world wide world to see every time that they would wish to link up a quote seems borderline of insanity because (1) some sites aren’t well maintained, (2) some sites don’t provide a contact, (3) even if there is a contact on the site, I have had many, many times that I still haven’t heard from them even months later. By that time, the story/article/posting being written has long turned cold and is yesterday’s news.

It has been accepted practice to, at the very least, provide a direct link to the resource being quoted so that the reader can judge and follow up on additional information about the subject matter if the reader would so like to do so and/or validate where the writer/blogger is coming from in his/her theory or opinion that is formulated in what the writer/blogger is writing or blogging about in their article/posting.

In the YouTube world, they are also being attacked about copyright infringement and requests for removal. While I can understand the arguments there a little bit more as someone isn’t putting up “quote signs” while they quote anyone or providing videos and, grant it, some I have wondered where they have appeared to captured a video directly by filming what they are viewing on television, why someone hasn’t booted them off before. In fact, one goes through an accreditation process when you post a video on YouTube. One would think, if YouTube thought it was a copyright infringement, they wouldn’t have allowed it on their site to begin with. YouTube has just gone through a cleansing of sorts and deleted over 30,000 videos that border on copyright infringements. This video seems to explain the YouTube copyright infringements readily:


I feel that Snopes has taken it a bit too far when insisted that I remove what I quoted from them in my blog posting, especially, when I had provided a direct link to the full article on Snopes supporting what I was conveying to the readers.

I know that the laws of internet usage need to be better defined, especially, in the world of utilizing quotes for support in other articles being posted on the internet. Hopefully, they will be doing so in the near future so that other writers and bloggers won’t be attacked as I was last night.

PS. Until today, I hadn’t really investigated this issue in depth since I felt that, if I did quote and credit them with the quoted material, I was well within my bounds and duty. I will periodically update this posting with additional information that I find on the subject matter….

Wikipedia: Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act (1998)

Please feel free to share any other resources to help us, as writers and bloggers, to be better informed and know how to react when we are attacked by emails alleging that we have violated some form of copyright infringement.





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