California  |  Intellectual Property

Legal Question

Asked on: 4/18/13, 1:25 pm


My question is about online content copyright. The DMCA gives full protection for website owners if the content is user submitted and unreviewed (eg. Youtube). Is there any protection against submitting copyrighted content to your site yourself? Content that's readily available on the Internet (eg. random pictures). Many successful sites have following copyright notice:

"All images on are readily available in various places on the Internet and believed to be in public domain. Images posted are believed to be posted within our rights according to the U.S. Copyright Fair Use Act (title 17, U.S. Code.)"

Clearly neither are true, but are 'believed to be' for the sake of pretending to be unaccountable for copyright infringement. What basis does this statement have in law, and have there been any court cases that show the legitemacy of this position? There are thousands of sites that use this. Thank you.

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