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Basically, you must be the copyright holder, or have permission from the copyright holder, for ALL COPYRIGHTED MATERIALS used in anything you publish, including promotional materials and online
content. This includes images (photos, graphics or artwork), music, and text (prose, poetry, or printed song lyrics).
If you want to avoid all problems with copyright, either be sure that you are the creator of everything used in your publication, or be sure you use public domain materials, Creative Commons-
YOUR OWN WORK: If you took the photo yourself, created the artwork yourself (NOT from a copyrighted source), wrote the music yourself, or wrote the prose/poetry/lyrics yourself, then you are the copyright holder and there is no problem! The copyright notice will read "©date your name".
YOUR OWN WORK THAT IS A COPY OF SOMEONE ELSE'S WORK: Don't do it! If you, for instance, do a painting from a published photograph (a photo in a magazine, for instance), or write a song using a melody from a song you heard on the radio, you are violating the copyright holder's rights. This can be a very big problem! For instance, you can't do a drawing of Mickey Mouse without violating Disney's copyright -
OLD FAMILY PHOTOS: Frankly, I'm not sure what the law is in this regard; generally speaking, though, if the photo has never been published, and it was either taken by you or a member of your family OR was taken before 1922, there should be no problem. If there's any possibility of a question, be sure to check with your country's copyright authority. NOTE: there can also be privacy issues with family photos that depict a living person. Always get that person's permission in writing BEFORE publishing a photo of them.
PUBLIC DOMAIN: you may freely use any work in the public domain without worrying about copyright. Any work published in the US before 1922 is in the public domain in the US. Any work that is declared to be in the public domain by the creator of the work is in the public domain. After that it gets complicated!
These are cases where the copyright holder gives you permission to use the work -
Note: ALWAYS CHECK THE RIGHTS FIRST. Sometimes, for instance, permission is only given for non-
COMMERCIAL MUSIC: Remember that you cannot freely use commercial music (such as you would hear on the radio), even if you personally sing and play the instruments. This applies to hymns and church songs, too. (A lot of hymns are in the public domain, but a lot more are not -
"In the case of a "real song", like something you would hear on a top-
If you want to use a song for any reason, you have to somehow obtain rights at least from the publisher, and possibly from the label as well (if you are planning to use a specific performance)."
(From "How Music Licensing Works" by Marshall Brain).
Note: In some cases (many favourite Christmas carols and standard church hymns, for instance) the melody itself may be in the public domain even though a particular arrangement (and often the words) are under copyright. But, as always, check first before using it!
If you produce copyrighted material that you'd like to make available to others, but do not want to put into the public domain (which means giving up all your rights), you might be interested in a Creative Commons license.
Here's what Creative Commons says about themselves: "Creative Commons defines the spectrum of possibilities between full copyright -
Creative Commons licenses let you select conditions to apply to your work:
The most accommodating license is BY: Attribution only -
Creative Commons is a non-
How does Dustwood Media deal with copyright? I either produce my own materials, use public domain or royalty-
IMAGES: I use my own photographs and artwork,.
MUSIC: Dustwood Media licenses all of its stock music from R.J. Woods Productions, my husband’s production company.
TEXT: Text in my website is either original with me or quoted (with attribution) from others (this falls under the definition of “fair use”). In my Christian videos I use Bible quotes from the King James or Douay-
FREE STOCK IMAGES: All free stock images on this website are ©Jeri-
VIDEOS: Most of my videos use my own photographs (©Jeri-
WEBSITE: Designed, created, copyrighted, and maintained by me. Website, contents and images are ©2016 Jeri-
So what is copyright?
"Copyright is a form of protection provided... to the authors of 'original works of authorship,' including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works. This protection is available to both published and unpublished works." (Copyright Office Basics, US Copyright Office).
"In the simplest terms, 'copyright' means 'the right to copy'. Only the owner of copyright, very often the creator of the work, is allowed to produce or reproduce the work in question or to permit anyone else to do so." (A Guide To Copyright, Canadian Intellectual Property Office).
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