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In radio and online journalism, what is the way to avoid copyright issues?

Going into my sophomore year, I am a radio host and have a website with 40 writers or so and have had issues with copyright laws before. I want to know how to post photos and use material without breaking the bank.

#law #radio #broadcast #radio-broadcasting


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Angela’s Answer

For images, check the rights on the image and how you are supposed to credit the image on your website.

The person whom you get the image from might not own the image, so even asking them for the above information might not work out.

If you are looking for stock images, I highly recommend learning about Creative Commons usage and looking on sites such as Flickr that let you filter by these different kinds of usage. Some images can be used for commercial purposes but only with proper credit/attribution. Other images can be used for commercial purposes but without proper credit/attribution. Creative Commons is fantastic for cases in which you need stock images since images that use their definitions make it easy to identify if it’s appropriate to use for your situation.

Angela recommends the following next steps:

Learn about Creative Commons usage: https://creativecommons.org/
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Bonnie’s Answer

Cite your sources, and don't steal anyone else's work. Not being flippant, just real.


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Matthew’s Answer

I would suggest going to law school and learning trademark, copy write, and patent law. That will be very time consuming, and it is not my area of practice.

This answer does not create an attorney client relationship, and if you seek further answers, please contact another attorney.

Good luck!

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Paul’s Answer

To continue off Matthew's answer, there's a few topics you need to learn as part of this career - copyright, trademarks and patents. But one in particular you need to learn in the area of copyright is called "Fair Use."

In copyright law, Fair Use is the ability to use a portion of a work, in the interests of news reporting, scholarly research, or something similar. For example, notice an album review in Rolling Stone or your local entertainment paper. In talking about a new album, the writer will often quote a couple of lines of lyric from one of the songs. And if you'll notice, no one EVER quotes an entire song. Why? Because using a couple of lines is a small enough use to not infringe on the copyright, while you inform the public about this new album. Quoting all the lyrics will get you in hot water for violating Fair Use.

There's quite a bit more to it, but you need to learn it for yourself. As a journalist, it's very important this principle is clear to you. Good luck!

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