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Common misconceptions about Copyright

As near as I can tell, most people know the same about Copyright law as they know about traffic laws. And, unfortunately, laws are not determined by watching what somebody else is doing, although that can give you a rough idea. Here in the US, it's the law to drive on the right side of the road. Watching other people do it can give you a pretty good idea of how to behave. If, however, everyone around you is behaving in a way that is against the law, that doesn't change the law.

And since I am seeing so much stuff that people are thinking *hey, I've seen someone else do it, it must be legal* that I'd thought I'd throw out a few. So here you go:

• You are still in violation of copyright, even if you give credit. Writing something like *photo by Sam Sabukowitz* is not the same as getting permission from Sam. If you get permission from Sam, save the email, and write *used with permission*. If Sam forgets that you got permission, show him that document.

• Writing *no copyright infringement intended* does not give you the right to infringe copyright. And I see a lot of this. To me, that's kind'a like a burglar saying, *I didn't mean any harm* as they walk away with what they have stolen.

Of course, there are more misconceptions on Copyright, each one appears to be sillier than the next. And no, I'm not a copyright lawyer (although I know the best one in town). And really, you don't need to know a lot of fine detail about copyright law, unless of course you are stealing, or if you are in a business where you have to protect your copyright. Then you have a lawyer handy.

Here is an amusing video about Copyright from YouTube