If you are a website owner, you probably feel the need to create fresh content on a consistent basis. After all, your blog, your podcast, your Instagram account and your Facebook pages are all ways your customers to get to know you and develop a trusting relationship with you. And this often happens long before they interact with you or purchase any product or service from you.
You are always on the lookout for new information to help your customers—before their your customers. As bloggers or content creators, we all have a responsibility to give credit where credit is due when share new info from other sources—online and offline.
What is the acceptable way to use blog content from others without violating copyright?
We offer these 5 “acceptable use” guidelines to help you use others content without violating copyright.
Disclaimer: We are not lawyers. This is not intended as legal advice.
- If you are quoting someone else, quote them correctly, ensuring that the context carries over their original intent. Use quotation marks and attribute the comment to the original author.
- Provide a live link to the original source. Proper citation and attribution will add credibility to your post.
- Check if the source you are quoting has content usage guidelines and if so, follow them. We once heard a blogger at a conference say that if it’s on the Internet it’s fine to reuse it because of creative commons licensing. That’s not accurate. The entire Internet is not licensed under Creative Commons! If the original author has published their image or copy under a Creative Commons License, you can share and reuse the material in accordance with the licensing agreement. If there isn’t clear licensing information associated with the material, request permission to use it first.
- Never republish a post in its entirety. Quote from it but add your own perspective on the topic. You are respecting the original author’s content and you are providing additional insight than the original article offered. This will give your readers a good reason to follow your blog.
- If you have a valid reason to publish an entire article, ask permission from the original author and make sure that the original author is credited. This isn’t a blogging tactic that you should use consistently. If you are going to blog, write your own original content. Copying and pasting the full content of a post from other online sources when writing a blog post is unwise and could get you and your blog into trouble.
Your readers will reward your blogging and content creation when you provide valuable, original and properly attributed information.