== Copyright and Your Content ==
Here at WritScrib we respect the rights of all creative people worldwide and we expect our members to also demonstrate that respect and assist us in creating a beneficial and positive atmosphere for all WritScrib visitors and members.
Copyright can be a confusing and often terrifying field of the law, especially when you are a young creator starting to form your own brand. We have curated a basic set of information regarding Copyright, but highly recommend contacting a legal expert if you are unsure of what to do.
- 1 How do I get Copyright?
- 2 What is Copyright Infringement?
- 3 How Can I Avoid Infringing on Someone's Copyright?
- 4 Some Cautions
- 5 What Happens When You Submit Infringing Works to WritScrib?
- 6 Fair Use
- 7 If you take my work down am I protected from a lawsuit?
- 8 Notification of Copyright Infringement
How do I get Copyright?
Under most national laws and international copyright treaties you receive a copyright automatically in any original work as you make it. Registration may be required to exercise some rights, like commencing a lawsuit. It isn’t enough to simply have an idea: you have to create something with it. For example, if you have the idea for a talking cartoon squirrel, you can’t then register that and sue anyone for having a talking cartoon squirrel: you must first create that talking cartoon squirrel.
What is Copyright Infringement?
Copyright infringement is when you take someone’s copyrighted work and use it without their permission. Some examples of copyright infringement can include:
- Reposting someone’s work
- Reposting someone’s work and removing their signature or watermark
- Copying someone’s idea (for example, this is my original character “Lickey Louse”, a cartoon mouse who is dating “Linnie Louse”)
How Can I Avoid Infringing on Someone's Copyright?
Simply put: if you didn’t make it, don’t post it! It’s possible to post something if you link back to the source or contact the creator asking for permission, but generally speaking you’ll never get in trouble for copyright infringement if you stick to your own content.
It is possible to obtain a license to use some or all of another person’s copyrighted material. Additionally, transformative works (like parodies, documentaries, or commentary) are typically considered an acceptable use of copyrighted material. Tread lightly with fanwork and remember to be prepared for the worst case scenario when posting fanwork.
- If you are using a part of someone’s copyrighted work, always obtain written permission. Even if someone offers verbal consent, they could retract that consent and leave you with no evidence of ever being given permission.
- If you upload transformative work, expect some trouble. Many copyright holders are receptive to transformative work, but some copyright holders will fill DMCA takedowns or threaten legal action.
- If you use someone’s copyrighted work for defaming another person, you may run into additional legal trouble.
- If your work is original but bears many similarities to another person’s work, there may be issues that arise over copyright. Always retain original timestamps for content creation and prepare for the worst.
- Even if you credit the creator and provide a source, you are still subject to copyright and if the author of that content demands that you take it down, you will be legally obligated to unless you asked for permission to post said content.
- Even if you are not making money on the reposted work, the creator can still demand that you take it down. A repost takes views away from the creator and prevents the author from seeing any feedback on their work! When in doubt, share directly from the source so that all eyes are on the creator.
What Happens When You Submit Infringing Works to WritScrib?
Any copyright owner following the procedures in this Copyright Policy can require WritScrib to remove his or her copyrighted content in use by a member of WritScrib. When through the proper notice we become aware that a submission to WritScrib infringes upon the copyrights of another artist, creative person or company, we will immediately delete it. This is a legal requirement which we fulfill immediately; you will not receive an advanced warning and you will not be given an opportunity to 'fix it'. Additionally, if you have earned any Chips on that content, those Chips will be subtracted from your account and either sent to the original creator or else retained by the site if the creator is not a member. All effort will be made to contact the original creator to pay them this amount.
If you believe that a submission on WritScrib infringes on your copyright you may either report the submission using our internal reporting system or send us a copyright notice via mail or email. A member of staff will review your notice and act accordingly. If you believe that one of your submissions was removed in error you may contact our helpdesk or otherwise file a counter notice.
During this process, Chips may still be used (we don’t want users to be able to freeze each other’s means of earning Chips by filing frivolous copyright claims), but be advised that if you do not have the correct amount of Chips related to the copyright infringing post, your account will be charged. Removing your payment method and withdrawing your Chips will result in a permanent ban if you attempt to circumvent this.
If you repeatedly infringe on another's copyright, you will have your account suspended for 30 days. Any repeat offenses after that suspension will result in a ban.
The copyright owner may also decide to sue you directly if you infringe his or her copyright in posting content to WritScrib.
Fair Use covers a limited scope of creative content, but is typically considered to be fanart or fanfiction. Users should take caution, however, and remember that some copyright holders may still pursue them even if the user believes that it is covered under fair use. Consult a legal expert if you are unsure.
If you take my work down am I protected from a lawsuit?
No. Even if WritScrib takes an infringing work down, you may still be responsible for very significant damages if the copyright owner decides to sue you.
Notification of Copyright Infringement
Instructions for Copyright Owners
This section contains the formal requirements of the Copyright Act with respect to the rights of copyright owners whose content appears on WritScrib without authorization and instruction to copyright owners.
To file a copyright infringement notification with WritScrib (also commonly known as a "DMCA takedown notice"), the copyright owner or an authorized agent acting on his or her behalf will need to send a written communication that includes substantially the following:
- 1. A physical or electronic signature of the copyright owner or of a person authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
- 2. Identification of the copyrighted work claimed to have been infringed, or, if multiple copyrighted works at a single online site are covered by a single notification, a representative list of such works at that site.
- 3. Identification of the material that is claimed to be infringing or to be the subject of infringing activity and that is to be removed or access to which is to be disabled, and information reasonably sufficient to permit the service provider to locate the material. In this regard please provide URLs when you identify the location of the material.
- 4. Information reasonably sufficient to permit the service provider to contact the complaining party, such as an address, telephone number, and, if available, an electronic mail address at which the complaining party may be contacted.
- 5. A statement that the complaining party has a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law.
- 6. A statement that the information in the notification is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, that the complaining party is authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
To file a DMCA takedown notice, you may use our form, which is available to WritScrib members. Otherwise you may use the following method:
Written notice should be sent by PDF attached to an email to WritScrib as follows:
DMCA Complaints WritScrib, LLC. Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgUnder Section 512(f) of the Copyright Act any person who knowingly materially misrepresents that material or activity is infringing may be subject to liability. Consult your legal counsel or see Section 512(c)(3) of 17 U.S.C. to clarify or confirm the requirements of the notice.