Do you generate content as part of your business? It’s likely that you do, even if you don’t realize it.
‘Content’ is anything that you create and publish online: newsletters, blogs, graphics, podcasts, social media posts, videos, and much more. Legally, that material belongs to you.
Historically, however, intellectual property has been very difficult to protect – and that was BEFORE the advent of the internet. Today, it’s nearly impossible.
Any would-be thief can easily scan the web, look for material they like, and copy it.
Boom! Just like that, they’ve taken your content and can pass it off as their own.
Luckily, there are things you can do to protect yourself – and you don’t have to be a legal expert, although hiring one doesn’t hurt.
Some of our favorite tips include:
- Don’t make yourself an easy target. Many business owners write a blog or take a photo and then just plaster it all over the place: email, social media, website, whatever. Doing that without taking any steps to protect your work is just asking for trouble.
- Let people know that your work belongs to YOU. If you write an article, put your name on it. Create a graphic for social media? Add your logo! You get the gist – if something is yours, make it clear that it’s yours. Often, that alone is enough to deter a thief.
- Add watermarks to your images. If you use original photography on your website and social media, the last thing you want is for other people to copy your work and pass it off as their own. A watermark can help protect you. After all, a content thief wants other people to think that THEY created the photo – something they can’t do when it’s covered with your mark.
- Add copyright protection to your content. If you want to take steps to legally protect your content, a copyright is the way to go. A form of intellectual property law, a copyright protects original forms of authorship like articles, songs, photos, videos, and more. In the event that you have to take someone to court, the copyright could help you win your case.
The internet is like the wild west: it’s a wild free-for-all and there’s trouble lurking around every corner. But there ARE ways to protect your content from all of those crazy bandits. Follow the steps out-lined in this article to get started. Have other questions about running your website and marketing? Check out our other blog posts. We cover all the topics!