From international corporations to law firms to mom-and-pop shops, every
business will consider some form of marketing at one point or another.
Whether that marketing is based solely online or consists of paper and
pamphlets is up to the business. What they include in that marketing,
however, is restricted due to copyright laws.
Whenever an artist paints a picture, a musician creates a score, an author
pens a book or article, and so on, the federal Copyright Act of 1976 most
likely slaps a quick copyright protection on it. Once that little ®
symbol is on something, whether it is notarized or not, no one is supposed
to use, distribute, or recreate it for any sort of profit or advantage.
This can be pretty disadvantageous to a business looking to create, copy,
or use popular or helpful premade materials for marketing or other projects.
Copyright Fair Use May Save the Day
Making an impenetrable copyright over everything the moment it was created
or even conceived would be unreasonable. The Copyright Act actually includes
a clause for “Fair Use” laws. Cutting out all of the legalese,
fair use essentially allows anyone to copyrighted material for purposes
not related to making profits, theft, or clear imitation. For example,
a copyrighted article could be redistributed or duplicated if it was to
inform, educate, or report the condition of it to others.
If you aren’t sure if something can be copied, ask yourself these
- What do I intend to do with the material once it is copied?
- What is the intent of the original piece?
- How much of the original piece do I need to copy or use?
- How many copies do I need to make?
- Does copying this material detract from its original value in any way?
Asking these questions before copying documentations or a file should serve
as a quick moral and legal check. If you don’t feel good about making
the copy, it probably isn’t the right move.
For companies that deal with sensitive information and confidential documentation,
though, it is best not to guess. If you copy something illegitimately
and violate copyright laws, you and your business could be in legal trouble
and stand to pay hefty fines if penalized. You need to be certain that
you are within your own legal right to copy, use, or distribute materials
when so much could be on the line.
At Acro Photo Print Inc., our New York City legal printing specialists
routinely handle enormous printing jobs for
law firms, corporations, and agencies that manage copyrighted materials. When you
come to us – or we come to you since we offer
pick-up and delivery services – we can help determine if what you are trying to
print is protected by a strict copyright, trademark, or patent. With 40+ years
of printing service experience, we have the knowledge and know-how to
take care of your project with ease and confidence.
Contact us online or call 929.244.4322 today to speak with our New York City printing team.