Sunday, May 27, 2007

Putting a copyright notice that automatically update

There are various ways of putting copyright notices on your blogs including typing your own and if you want to include the © symbol, you will have to use the code code for copyright symbol to display the © symbol. For clearer explanation, refer to How to put a copyright notice to your blog. This post was written for the old classic Blogger template, but you can modify it for the New Blogger if you know how New Blogger works. If not, refer to the bottom section of this post.

If your blog content has been copied, or you want a way to discourage would-be copycats, refer to this post: What to do if your blog content is copied, or you want to warn off would-be copycats (click BACK button to get back to this page).

Anyway, there is an easier way and a way to do copyright notice which can enable you to keep the copyright notice up-to-date automatically, and that is to use this copyright notice generator: Automatic always up-to-date copyright notice generator. I have used it to generate a copyright notice for this blog: Dummies Guide to Google Blogger. The copyright notice is at the footer of the blog. If you return to the blog next year, you will see that notice updated to year 2008.

The above copyright notice generator is very easy to use and is self-explanatory. Just input the relevant data and make your choices, and when you are done, just click the [generate] button and a window will appear with the script which you can copy and paste into a HTML/Javascript widget window of the Add a Page Element of the LAYOUT. The most suitable Add a Page Element to click to do that should be in the footer section of the LAYOUT, and that is what I have done for the blog Dummies Guide to Google Blogger.

I think I will probably do the same thing for my other blogs, including this one.

How to put the script mentioned above into your blog

If you are using the New Blogger template, sign into Blogger Dashboard and click LAYOUT for the blog where you want to put the script (or click the TEMPLATE tab if you are already in the Dashboard of the particular blog) and you will be taken to the Layout page. Click "Add a Page Element" in the footer section of the Layout, chose HTML/Javascript and click "Save to blog". Paste the script into the window and click "Save". The new HTML/Javascript Page Element will appear at the top of other page elements if you have other Page Elements in the footer. Most likely, you will want the notice to appear right at the bottom of the blog, in which case, hover your mouse over the new Page Element. The cursor will change to a cross. Drag the Page Element to the bottom of the footer. Click "Save" at the top right of the Page. Click "View blog" to make sure everything is as you want it.


  1. You can also use © for the copyright symbol (in case Blogger borks it up, that is, without quotes and without spaces "& copy ;").
    However, you do not need to put a copyright notice up, the second you create something, you automatically have the copyrights to it, there is no need at all to put up a notice.

    Also, some people don't -want- copyrights on their works, they can use a Creative Commons license, for example:
    Please also look into that and list as a potential alternative to the sometimes-much-too-strict full copyright.

  2. Hi daedalus young,

    You are completely right. I do know something about intellectual properties. In fact I hold a British Patent plus a Malyasia Patent. I know that anything published is automatically copyrighted, but you can make that stronger by registering it with the Library of Congress (if I remember correctly) and a copyright notice do help to deter potential copycats if your content being copied is not what you want. Thanks for the extra information anyway. It is also a reminder that perhaps I should make an update or do a new post on the copyright issue. If you want, I can acknowledge that I was reminded about that by you with a link to your site. The owner of Profile Directory reported many hits from my blog when I made a post Profile Directory: Increase traffic to your blog.

    Peter (Blog*Star 2006 and 2007)
    Testing Blogger Beta (now New Blogger)

  3. Ah ok, I don't know how registering works in other countries, I don't even really know how it works in The Netherlands :P

    You don't need to credit me for reminding, I just said it as I thought it'd just be a little more complete with all (or at least more) options. If you're planning a post about it, then that'd be great for the sake of completeness :)

    Friendly Greetings!

  4. actually, I'm a law student studying intellectual property. You register at Copyright Office, not Library of Congress, and although you do hold copyright as soon as you create something, registering is required for litigation. just to clarify for others who might be reading this. =) Thanks always for great tips!

  5. Hi Jean,

    Thanks for a more authorarotative (how do you spell this?) answer. I am only a patents owner plus have some knowledge about intellectual properties and I do remember reading somewhere that if there is a possibility of you sueing (again how to spell this?) someone, you need to have it registered at the Library of Congress, but that had always puzzled me. I live in Malaysia and have never register any copyright except get a copy signed by a commissioner of oath with a date to proof when the document was created. To the best of my knowledge, there is no copyright office and I doubt there is a section in the Patent Office department (or whatever) to me, a layman, I think there is no way for us to register a copyright. This is what I know from memory, no research.

    Now it would be great if Jean can give us the contact details of the copyright office which I suspect is that of the US.

    Peter Blog*Star
    Dummies Guide to Google Blogger
    "online book" IN PROGRESS. Use the CONTENT at the top of the main column

  6. Hi Peter,

    That is the address to the U.S. Copyright Office. You will also find Title 17, which governs copyright law in the U.S.

    Under "Copyright Basics," the Office does a pretty good job of putting things in laymen term. See "Copyright Registration" under this section, the Office explains that registration is not required for protection, but it is required for litigation.

    Of course, for copyright protection, you need to fulfill elements of copyright (author, idea/expression dichotomy, etc)

    Under "Copyright Notice" section, they explain that the notice is also NOT required for protection.

    All these apply to works created after the new law in 1978.

    Also to add, despite some add-ons I've seen on some blogs, how to automatically "update" copyright notices, such is not necessary. Copyright protection is for the life of the author + 70 years. So Copyright 2006, if that is your date of the first blog entry, the blog is protected for your life + 70 year after your death.

    Fun facts, eh?

    Disclaimer: Check with Copyright Office to make sure these facts are correct. I have to say that because I'm just a student still. I can't give a legal advice.

  7. I thought I'd add a little more.

    There is no such thing as International copyright. But the countries that are signatories to Berne Convention of 1971 are governed by that international law.

    The text of the Berne Convention is well organized at:

    You can also do a google search to find the actual text, but I find the Cornell website makes it easier to read.

    See Article 5 Section 2. It forbids formality requirement (meaning copyright notice). Malaysia is a signatory to Berne Convention as of 1990.

  8. Malaysia is signatory to quite a number of conventions, including the Human Rights convention. Yet in Malaysia, we have detention without trial. A citizen can be locked up for years without the authorities having to take him or her to court to determine his or her innocence or for the detained to defend himself or herself. Yet have Malaysia been hauled up for that infraction of the Human Rights convention?

    Regarding whether there is a place to register a copyright, I think not, but it should not be too difficult to find out. However, the most important question is, do you have the means to go to court, and if you loose, can you afford the financial losses (winning party legal expenses, expert witness fees, etc)? I got my first British patent when Malaysia have no Intellectual Property office. I have a Malaysia patent which was infringed by the biggest operator of tolled road. There were some exchanges between our lawyers. They chose to fight. They have deep pocket. I have what they call kachang putih (fried peanuts). I chose not to fight. All my money gone down the drain.

    Peter Blog*Star
    Blog for Positive Changes
    (not my main blog, but set up out of sheer necessity)

  9. Do you mind me keep posting here? =)

    That is very coincidental but I did study in International Law and attended many colloquia on intl issues including US in Guantanamo Bay. I have my B.A. in political science, I focused my study on war tactics and theories.

    Without any international police power (executive branch) that keeps track of what's going on in the world, international law is maintained by individuals like you and I, and NGOs, and organizations like the UN. (I'm sure you already know this, as I just found out you are a professor!)

    To be tried at ICJ, the court must have jurisdiction on that country in question. And claims are brought by States, not individuals or organization. For Malaysian government's practice of detention without trial to be brought to the ICJ, some other State has to bring that claim to the ICJ, probably because one of THEIR citizens were locked up in prison without a proper trial. But it also depends on the law in Malaysia.

    There are many RUDs (Reservations, Understanding, and Declaration) available to signatories. U.S. is a signatory to many Human Rights treaties with various reservations. When a signatory "reserves" itself from specific provisions of the treaty, it means the country is not obliged by that provision of the treaty. Once the UN approves of the RUDs, then a country can be a signatory to the treaty and not be obligated to a provision that is the law in some other country.

    The adoption of "reservation" had been criticized by many scholars and organizations. What is the purpose of having a treaty if the signatories can select out the provisions that are disadvantageous to them? Supporters of RUDs say that without reservations, it would be difficult to get many countries to sign the treaty.

    Now, I don't really know much at all about the Malaysian constitution or legal system. In the US, even if its rep signs on to a treaty, if it does not get ratified by the Senate, the treaty is not incorporated into the US law. Malaysia might have reservations on various provisions on the Human Rights treaties. And also if it's a dispute between the government and its citizens, it's a domestic issue. If Malaysian Constitution does not speak to "No detention without trial," it does not violate any constitutional rights at that point.

    I tried to skim through the Convention (because in class we read cases and some essential provisions of each treaty)

    Geneva Convention is about soldiers and prisoners of war. Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a non-binding General Assembly resolution.

    You want to look at ICCPR, especially Article 14,
    As far as I can tell though, Malaysia is not a party bound by the ICCPR.

    Malaysia is also NOT a party to ICESCR, either.

    Here is the link to UN Human Rights Office of High Commissioner:

    There, you'll find original texts of the treaties and state signatories/parties. You should do a blog entry!

  10. Hi Jean,

    You can post a 100 comments if you want. You are giving me and my readers useful info, and I would be a fool to ask you to stop

    Peter Blog*Star
    Environmentally friendly presents

  11. Thanks for the tips!

  12. thanks for this info; it was very helpful.

  13. Is it possible to stop photo's on Blogger being copied in the first place ?

    Copyright is all very well but it would be better to prevent copying in the first place.

    I can't find anything on how this should be done - if indeed it can be.

    I've been asked many times now to protect photo's I put up - how can I do this please ?

    Really need to know URGENTLY too !!!

  14. You can try to disable right click but read about its effectiveness in the above post. Another thing you can do is to put a watermark in your photos.

  15. thanks very much! i did it and it worked fine

  16. Thanks! Great tips !

  17. Thank you so much... that was the easiest thing I have done in forever.

  18. Hey thanks for the tip. I will try to implement your solution on my Blog about Copyright infringements (in German).

  19. How far can you go, if you know your content has been copied? To take the case forward, do you already need to have an infringement notice on your site warning users not to copy content? Is it required to register the copy right notice with someone or anyone can just write it on the site?

  20. Anything original that you publish is automatically copyright irrespective of whether you add a copyright notice or not.


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