The facts and analysis drawn on this article are intended to enlighten some must know bloggers legal issues rather than hard and straightforward legal terms and consideration for professional bloggers. Depending on the countries and types of blogs you are running, legal terms and regulation might vary.
We encouraged you to contact the local attorney for any further conflict and issues regarding the laws and regulation persists in your country.
However, for the professional bloggers; there are a way more common ethical issues they must follow to be well accepted in the blogging community.
Here are some very important and must know bloggers legal issues before publishing any content publicly on your blog. Breaching laws and written or verbal ethical guidelines of blogging will price you more in your future if you want to pursue your carrier in this field.
Must Know Bloggers Legal Issues for Professional Blogging
If a blog is not related to e-commerce or any specific conversion website, content is the major backbone of every blog. The very straight legal issues that you must understand regarding the content is that you cannot copy, rewrite and theft the core idea of any blog post or article which was already published on the web. Unless it is not the universal fact any researched or experimental issues, the body of the content must not come up with same phenomena of practice and have the same bodily structure.
However, you are free to have the same topic for any blog post or article which was already published in a web. The idea here is that you cannot straight copy, rewrite and rearrange the previously published content in the web on your blog post.
Let’s suppose if you are writing an article on the topic of “How to Free Up Space in iPhone”.
Your topic of the article on your blog might be same but the way that you write your body part of the blog post must not have the same vocabulary, same sentences structure, and topic flow.
If you are writing the content on the same topic, based on experimental or illustrations which was already performed; you should contact the publisher of the original source. Even if they allow to reproduce the content based on their experiment or illustration, you should provide the attribution link to the original source of content as per the guidelines of the original producer.
If you come up with your unique way to free up space in iPhone, in that scenario you will be the original source of content for that process and you can confidently publish the article publicly.
Legal Issues in Copyright
As we mentioned some ideas regarding the copyright legal issues in the previous section, copyright law is life-saving aspects for the professional blogging. It protects the ownership of original source whatever it is either text content, image, video or audio file. Copyright content cannot be stolen or misused on any web platform.
There are several copyright licenses with various restrictions how the copyright material can be used in your blog. For an example finding the images for your blogs, there are many royalty free licensed images fall under the Creative Commons licenses; those you are free to use in your blogs in binding with the terms and attribution condition as mentioned in original source.
In some instances, you can copy the phrase or some words without breaching the copyright laws staying within the rules of fair use. At that scenario, you should attribute the original source where it came from by citing the author’s name, website name with a link to the original source. Make sure that it lies under the rules of fair use.
If you are not sure for the fair use, you are advised to contact the creator of the original source for approval.
Legal Issues Regarding Trademark
Trademarks are the means to protect intellectual property in commerce which are issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
Company name, brand names, product names, and logos are usually termed as a trademark of an organization which is not allowed to use in your blogs to mislead the users of your blog in the manner that it is affiliated with the trademark owner or represents the owner in any way.
The bottom line here is that you can not misuse the other company trademark in such a way that you have the affiliation with the trademark owner which could affect the commerce.
Always Disclose Paid Endorsement
If your blogs contain the paid content either it is reviewed or promoted product, it is common ethics of professional blogging that you should reveal this information clearly to the visitors.
There are definite guidelines for the paid endorsement by Federal Trade Commission for protecting American’s consumers. We suggest you read FTC’s Endorsement Guidelines if your blog contains such content.
Here is some basics information that you must include in such blog posts.
- Label the content if it is an advertisement.
- Disclose the affiliates, if the link drives visitors to the advertised products or services.
- Disclose the truth of advertisement, if you are working for the company on which you motivate your users in the article.
You are not allowed to publish false information on your blog about anyone or anything which negatively affects the perceptions of audiences.
Mostly in case of rivals among the same company or band products, intentionally and illogically you are not allowed to spread the false and misleading information among audiences either you drive many traffics or not, it signifies misrepresentation.
If you do so, your blog can be publicly banned under the regulation of misrepresentation of information.
You cannot capture the confidential information about your audiences to your blog and share and sell that information to the third party without the permission of those persons.
If you collect the data from the audiences who visited your websites, you should disclose it.
Additional Source of Information for Must Know Bloggers Legal Issues:
- EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) Legal Guide for Bloggers
- Creative Commons Podcasting Legal Guide
- Digital Media Law Project’s Legal Guide
- Federal Trade Commission Endorsement Guides
- Copyright Law
We are not an attorney and nothing in this article should be taken as legal advice.