Copyright basics

I’ve read on this forum that:

“Technically you don’t even need to put a copyright notice on the bottom of the page. Once it’s written you automatically have copyright over it whether you do so or not.”

So, putting All Rights Reserved and your company name and the year(s) may at least serve some notice to people thinking about copying, correct?

Also, if you do get copyrighted, via US Copyright office, doesn’t all your copyright information become publically available through that office?

There are a number of people out there who claim to not realise that the content of the web is subject to copyright. Placing a copyright notice on your pages at least reduces the likelyhood that they will make such a claim and makes them look even stupider if they do.

In UK Law you don’t have to place any claim over copyright but I think it’s different in the US.

It is a good idea to put the copyright info on the site, as it is simply useful information that should be kept with the content. However, it is true that in the US, as soon as a work is created and in the public, the author has the copyright. So you don’t actually have to file a registration with the copyright office.

However, I believe filing with the US copyright office means that should you wish to sue someone over copyright infringement, the amount of damages you can claim increases significantly.


No there is no difference between UK and US, at least as far as the notice is concerned. I believe that Shadowbox is correct in his comment about registering copyright in the US. Other than that, both the US and the UK are signatories of the Berne convention which is an International copyright agreement.

“…the amount of damages you can claim increases significantly.”

It really isn’t that so much-- just you can’t move forward with an infringement suit without a registration. I have been told, but do not believe it, that you can only gather damages for infringements after registration.

Copyright is the form of protection provided by the laws of United States. For different country these rules are different. Copyright act generally gives the owner of copyright the exclusive right to do. This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. Only the author or those deriving their rights through the author can rightfully claim copyright.

Not really. For countries that signed the Berne convention the standard international copyright rules apply with only insignificant differences. Only in those countries that didn’t sign are the rules significantly different.