Where Did My Wikipedia Go? Just the Facts on SOPA and PIPA
If you used to think that SOPA was a misspelling of soap, after January 18th, 2012 you know better. What is now being called, National SOPA Blackout Day, the internet was flooded with thousands of articles, hundreds of petitions and most chilling to many users - blocked websites. Wikipedia shut down its services for the day and Google's home screen icon contained a censorship box that lead to even more petitions … Read More
Warning! Co-Creation Hazard Ahead
Brainstorming and collaborating frequently produces superior work. For that reason, it is not surprising that many creative works, in the art and literature world, as well as in the business world, are the result of co-creation. Unfortunately, it is common for disputes to arise over co-created materials. That is not to say you shouldn't collaborate. It is, however, essential that the … Read More
Know Who You Are Doing Business With On the Internet
We are all used to clicking the "I agree" button and frequently we click without reading the lengthy terms and conditions. While many are long, these virtual agreements bring with them rights, responsibilities and restrictions. By clicking "I Agree", you have created a contract. In the on-line order process, frequently you will click on an agreement button, again creating a contract. … Read More
Easy Steps to Protect Your Website
There is nothing more frustrating than learning that the technical or product information that you wrote, or the photographs that you took for your website have been stolen and used on someone else's website. Sometimes the copying is so blatant that the other website looks just like yours! If a competitor steals your website content, it can do real damage to your business. Website copying is common … Read More
Have You Ever Been Greenwashed?
There is a good chance you have never even heard of greenwashing. Yet, your company may be at risk by engaging in the practice of greenwashing. Wikipedia defines greenwashing as the practice of companies disingenuously spinning their products and policies as environmentally friendly. In today's world, "green" is good marketing, but saying your product is green when it isn't can have significant consequences. … Read More
Should I Register the Copyright on My Website?
In today's global market place, virtually every business has a website, and many of those sites are content-rich. Websites are often filled with original writings and pictures. Much of that original content is marketing, while other content consists of informative articles, tips and guides to grab and keep the attention of visitors to the site. A great deal of time and effort is spent creating a content-rich … Read More
Protecting Your Business Name on the Internet
People either find your business on the Internet or they find your competition. Your business likely has some presence on the web. Usually it is a website that uses your business name as its "domain name" such as ABCcompany.com. The term domain name simply describes the characters that identify your website.
The slight difference between a domain name ending in ".com" and ".net" is very significant. A competitor … Read More
Protect Your Artwork
As an artist or a photographer, your most valuable assets are your creations. An artist's work can end up on someone else's product, marketing piece, or website, without the artist's permission and without the artist ever earning a royalty. The piece may even have been modified or there might be no credit disclosing who created it. Many artists and photographers feel there is not much they can do to stop that, or … Read More
Not All Trademarks Are Created Equal
When it comes time to choose a name for the new product or service you are launching, it is important to know that not all trademarks are created equal. In addition to the marketing considerations of choosing a brand name, there are also important legal considerations to keep in mind.
Let's consider the example of opening a gas station. If a company opens 50 new gas stations and names each of them, "The Gas … Read More
Was Dumb Starbucks Smart?
Comedian Nathan Fielder created a media stir, and long lines, when he opened a coffee shop called Dumb Starbucks. The establishment was quickly closed down for not having a permit. In the short time that the shop was open, legal commentators everywhere speculated about whether Starbucks would sue for trademark infringement, and if it did, how the case would turn out. The shop looked virtually … Read More