Need advice about using copyrighted\pirated content hosted on my site

Please help me out, i need some advice on the following topic. I am looking forward to create a unique website by hosting videos/ songs, pictures, etc. and getting revenue generated by ad's. I'm confused that how copyright policies work, what will happen if i/myself or any other user puts any copyrighted material on my site or lets say a pirated movie/ commercial song video, etc. Can i be getting directly sued by the material copyright owner or will he inform me before and provide me with sufficient time to remove the content from the site. Even i specifically wanted to talk about the pirated movie stuff and music videos etc. as i have seen many websites being blocked.


Asked 11 months ago in Alabama
Categories: Internet  Patents, Trademarks, Copyright

Answer Now

James R Coleman

Answer by James R Coleman

VerifiedWorldwide lawyer

You have asked a number of inter-related questions.  A copyright owner has a nearly absolute right to control when and where the work is presented.  If the owner has registered the work with the Library of Congress, the FBI can, if it chooses, prosecute the infringer criminally.  There can be fines and civil penalties ranging up to $150,000.  However, there is an exception called "fair use".  A person can copy and distribute a small portion of a work.  This is usually a quote in the context of a review. 

If you know that a work is pirated and you do not remove it, you might be prosecuted.  There are many pages on youtube which contain the message that the work has been removed at request of the owner.

Some owners do not mind being copied. Disney, for example, is ruthless in protecting their works.  Some years ago they went after a daycare center for having paintings of Disney characters on the walls.

Despite all of this, stealing copyrighted works goes on every day.  The best advice is that if you know a work is someone else's work, remove it from your site.  The fact that someone else got away with it won't help you if the FBI hunts you down.
 

Posted 11 months ago

Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be provided by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion. For formal legal advice, hire a lawyer (many give a free first consultation). Contact James R Coleman, or search the Lawyer Directory.


Comment

Okay i will not upload copyrighted\pirated video/movies on my site. but what if any of my user upload it at my site. I will get a message/complaign first to remove the content from copyright owner or simply is there a chance he can sue me in court Thank you very much

Posted 11 months ago


James R Coleman

Answer by James R Coleman

VerifiedWorldwide lawyer

You ask if someone can sue you.  This is one of those issues that the ordinary public does not understand.  Anyone can sue anyone for anything.  That does not mean the suit cannot be dismissed promptly nor does it mean that even if the suit is allowed, the complainant will collect anything.  In addition, if someone sues in "bad faith", an indefinable term that we seem to know, the person sued might recover damages for the cost of defending.  In general, copyright owners are happy if you remove the material after they notify you. 

Posted 11 months ago

Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be provided by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion. For formal legal advice, hire a lawyer (many give a free first consultation). Contact James R Coleman, or search the Lawyer Directory.


Comment

I am talking about sueĆ­ng in related to copyright context...Before going any case in court i will get a message from copyright owner to remove the content.. If you know that a work is pirated and you do not remove it, you might be prosecuted. What if any of my user would published pirated content or by my mistake some copyright content is uploaded by myself.?? I have given my email id in contact page on my website. Is it okay..

Posted 11 months ago


James R Coleman

Answer by James R Coleman

VerifiedWorldwide lawyer

The law may seem unreasonable on this point but you can be held liable for stolen content on your site.  That rule is, in part, to prevent site owners from doing a slapdash job of weeding out stolen content.  You might consider requiring definite identification of all who post content then getting a written agreement that the posters will indemnify you if the content they post is stolen.  In reality, there is a lot of stolen content on sites like youtube.com.  Take a look at the policies of sites like that.  Youtube regularly takes down stolen content. 

Posted 11 months ago

Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be provided by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion. For formal legal advice, hire a lawyer (many give a free first consultation). Contact James R Coleman, or search the Lawyer Directory.

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