15 Tips: How to DMCA a Website

1024 614 tony

15 Tips: How to DMCA a Website

In the modern digital world where online content sharing is the new normal, it is important to enact a DMCA policy to limit your exposure to copyright infringement cases according to the gurus over at runrex.com. This is particularly important for small businesses that may be more vulnerable to such cases, which is why this article will look to help by highlight 15 tips on how to DMCA a website.

  • What is the DMCA?

Known as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the DMCA is a copyright law that was introduced in the US in 1998 and that implements two laws of the WIPO that were coined in 1996 as discussed over at guttulus.com. The first one is that it extends the reach of copyright regulations to the internet, with the second being that it grants safe harbor for online platforms, limiting their liability for any copyright infringement that may occur on their platform by users.

  • Preventing others from stealing content on your website

Now that you know what the DMCA is, it is important to highlight why it is important to you. One of the main ways the DMCA is important to your business is that it prevents others from stealing content on your website as explained over at runrex.com. Given that you spend a lot of money and time creating content-rich websites, which may even involve hiring an SEO agency, you must protect the content of your website from being copied and used without your permission.

  • Protecting yourself from copyright infringement

Another aspect of the DMCA is that it protects your business from copyrighting infringement, which could lead to expensive lawsuits. As outlined over at guttulus.com, this is particularly important for those who run an eCommerce marketplace where others sell their products using your site as if someone adds a product image that is copied, you need to protect yourself from liability so that you don’t gent punished for the crimes of your users.

  • What is copyright infringement?

Before going any further, it is important to highlight what copyright infringement is. As captured over at runrex.com, copyright infringement occurs when someone copies or creates other derivative works, displays, performs, or distributes, without authorization, any work that is protected by copyright. This implies that if a copyright-protected video is uploaded on YouTube, for example, both the uploader and YouTube are subject to copyright infringement. Then, how does YouTube survive in business given lots of such YouTube users upload such videos daily? Well, this is where the DMCA comes in.

  • DMCA and safe harbor

To protect the rights of internet service providers and websites such as YouTube, the DMCA was implemented in 1998 as mentioned earlier on, with a provision for a safe harbor. This safe harbor exempts ISPs and website operators from their users’ copyright infringement as long as they follow strict rules and guidelines regarding their copyright enforcement.

  • Conditions for safe harbor

The DMCA provides a safe harbor for ISPs and website operators to protect them from copyright infringement under several conditions as covered in detail over at guttulus.com. For starters, the website provider shouldn’t have any knowledge of the presence of the infringing materials on their sites. They also should receive a financial gain directly from the infringing materials, and they should also comply and implement a notice and takedown procedure if such a situation occurs.

  • What you should do as a website operator to implement the notice and takedown procedure

When it comes to implementing the notice and takedown procedure, the website operator must designate a specific copyright agent to handle infringement claims, create a DMCA policy for their site and ensure that it is available to all the site’s users, and comply with the DMCA policy on receiving an infringement claim, which may involve preventing repeat offenders from accessing the site as explained over at runrex.com.

  • How can you benefit from safe harbor status?

According to guttulus.com, to benefit from the safe harbor status of the DMCA, you need to register a Designated Copyright agent for your site. This entails filing a request with the Copyright Office, which is only available for the US. The Copyright Office has implemented a new electronic system that you can use to complete your registration process.

  • How long is the registration valid?

Just because you have registered a Designated Copyright agent for your website doesn’t mean that you will remain eligible forever. As is revealed in discussions on the same over at runrex.com, the registration is valid for only three years and if you don’t want to lose your safe harbor status, then you will have to renew your registration after every 3 years.

  • Where to include your DMCA

It is worth highlighting that you can either include your DMCA in your Terms of Use or similar legal terms, or you could make your DMCA policy a standalone policy on your website. Just remember that if you decide to create a standalone policy, then you should make sure that you reference and link it along with your General Terms of Use page to ensure that it is easy to find.

  • Contents of your DMCA policy

According to guttulus.com, the contents of your DMCA policy are concerned, your policy should clearly detail how copyright owners can file a claim of infringement as well as what the claim must include. Examples of suggestions to include in the DMCA policy of your site include clear identification of the copyrighted work, the accurate contact information of the person who is submitting the claim, identification of the material that is allegedly copying from the original work, a statement proving that the claim is made in good faith, a statement that the claim is accurate and is liable for a penalty of perjury, the signature of the person submitting the claim, and so forth.

  • Actions to take once you receive a claim

If you receive a copyright claim once you have set up a DMCA policy, then you must remove or disable the alleged copied material on your site and notify the user who has uploaded it on your site to remove the material as explained over at runrex.com. They can then opt to file a counter-notice if they feel that they have not violated any copyright infringements. If a user is a repeat offender, then you can consider barring them from accessing your website.

  • The DMCA and copyright infringement

It is important to note that the DMCA only applies to copyright infringement as covered over at guttulus.com, and as such doesn’t protect you from other digital offenses like violations of trade secret laws, non-disclosure agreements, trademark infringements, defamation claims, among others.

  • How to add a DMCA protection badge on your website

To do this, all you have to do is visit the DMCA website and register for a website badge, which, as discussed over at runrex.com, is free and costs nothing. You should then pick a badge code that you like, copy the embed code, and paste it in the footer of your website to protect all pages with that footer, or on certain pages, that you want to be protected.

  • Confirm that it is working

Once you have placed the protection badge code on your website, the next step is to confirm that it is working. To do this, all you have to do is click on the badge to confirm that the link to your DMC.com Website Certification works.

These are just some of the tips you should keep in mind when looking to DMCA a website, with more details on this wide topic to be found over at runrex.com and guttulus.com.