Content marketing is becoming a go-to tool for businesses, but generating enough quality content to keep your blogs and social media posts populated can be a challenging proposition. Here are some guidelines to avoid copyright infringement issues when buying and repurposing content.
- Assume copyright: When you find information, pictures, video or music online, you should always assume that material is protected. Using content without permission can lead to copyright infringement lawsuits and monetary damages.
- Get permission: If you want to repurpose content you find online, you need to locate the copyright owner and get written permission first. You also need permission to repost customer photos of people using your product or wearing your brand.
Additionally, you need permission to use a news article about your company and any photographs taken by the news outlet. In many cases, you may be asked to pay a licensing fee in order to use the content.
- Use original posts: Original content establishes you as a thought leader in your industry. If your organization lacks the time or talent to create it, hire a professional writer to assist. You may want a writer to do all the research and content development, or you may want someone who will simply help shape and polish your own ideas for publication.
- Get familiar with Creative Commons: Some creators post their work under a Creative Commons license. Other users then may share, use or possibly adapt that content based on applicable license conditions. You can use Creative Commons-licensed materials as long as you adhere to the license parameters. You can find more information and search tools at CreativeCommons.org.
- Review presentation decks: Your company marketing team may already have a grasp on what constitutes legal use for materials on your website. What about having those staffers put together slide decks for speaking engagements and client meetings?
To avoid copyright infringement, the photos and art in those decks also should be secured with written permission or license agreements.
If you have questions regarding what constitutes fair use and what you may publish, speak to a business attorney.