How to Report Copyright Infringement Hassle-Free
People are often under the misconception that the content published on the internet is available for anyone to use. Nothing can be further from the truth, which means that most of us committed copyright infringement at least once in our lives.
To avoid plagiarizing or stealing someone’s work, we should learn more about how copyright works, how long it lasts, and what copyright claims are. If you are a content creator, it would be beneficial to learn how to copyright, what DMCA is, and how it provides protection to your work.
What Does Copyright Infringement Refer To?
Copyright Infringement, or copyright violation, is a term used to describe the action of using or duplicating someone else’s creative and original work that has been protected by copyright laws.
Most often, subjects of copyright infringement are the music and moviemakers, although media, journalism, and publishing are also taking a serious hit. The Copyright Act of 1996 guarantees the owner exclusive rights to:
- Reproduce and make copies of the original work
- Prepare derivative works based on the original version
- Distribute copies of the work by lending, renting, or selling
- Perform the work publicly
- Display the work publicly
- Perform sound recordings publicly using digital audio transmission
If you believe that you’ve been a victim of copyright violation, you can pursue this matter in a federal court. In some cases, copyright infringement can be prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice as a criminal misdemeanor or felony.
What Is the DMCA?
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act, or DMCA, is a U.S. copyright law enacted in 1998, intending to create an updated version of copyright laws that would help regulate digital material. The main role of the DMCA is to protect the rights of copyright owners, as well as consumers.
Another important aspect of the DMCA is providing a ‘safe harbor’ for web hosts and internet service providers.
The safe harbor term is in this case used for the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act, the U.S. federal law that protects online service providers from copyright infringement claims for the acts of third parties.
Although safe harbor represents a controversial topic, potential copyright liability would prevent many online services from providing user-generated content.
As mentioned, the DMCA is the U.S. law, but you can still send DMCA notices if the infringement was committed outside the States, or in case you live abroad, and the violation happened on U.S. soil.
How To Report Copyright Infringement Manually
When you discover your copyright has been violated, the first step is to report it. There are many options for filing a copyright notice online, but if you believe that infringement was of criminal nature, the best thing to do is contact The Intellectual Property Program of the Financial Institution Fraud Unit of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Two FBI divisions investigate crimes related to intellectual property:
You can report copyright infringement to them by:
- Contacting your local FBI field office
- Filing an online report at the Internet Crime Complaint Center
In either case, complaints will be routed accordingly.
If a copyright infringement isn’t a criminal matter, you should contact one of the many organizations that monitor and prosecute these kinds of violations.
How To File a DMCA Notice
The DMCA Takedown Notice is how copyright owners can get material and content that violates their copyright taken down from infringing websites.
A DMCA notice should contain the following information:
- Location of the plagiarized content (the URL, title, and other important information)
- Location of the original content
- Your contact information
- A statement that proves you have a good reason for believing that your work is being used without your permission
- Your signature
Once you've drafted a solid DMCA takedown notice, it's time to exercise your rights and request the removal of your content from offending websites. Here's who you can send the DMCA takedown notice to:
|Who To Contact||What To Do|
|The author||Send a cease and desist letter or email asking them to remove the content from their website|
|Site owner or host||Send a detailed takedown notice email to request them to remove the stolen content|
|ISPs and search engines||Find out what email address they use for copyright complaints and send your DMCA takedown request|
Every Internet Service Provider (ISP) should have agents responsible for takedown notices, and their contact information should be clearly stated, among other contact details.
File a DMCA Notice With DoNotPay’s Help
Being a victim of copyright infringement is stressful, and sometimes you won’t have the energy to deal with filing numerous reports. That’s where DoNotPay comes to the rescue!
Access DoNotPay from your web browser, and follow the step-by-step instructions:
- Type DMCA in the search box
- Select DMCA Takedown
- Enter the title of your work
- Provide the URL of the website where the issue was found
- Provide the URL of the originally posted material
- Sign and submit
You will soon get the results of the takedown notice on the main page of your DoNotPay account. You won’t need to contact anyone for information or wait in line to get your problem solved.
Where Else To Report Copyright Infringement?
Many industry-specific organizations are dealing with copyright infringement. Depending on the type of original content, you can report copyright violations to the following organizations:
- National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center—Any copyright infringement
- The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)—Music copyright infringements
- The Software Alliance (BSA)—Infringement of Software
- The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA)—Infringement of books and other literary content
What Else Can DoNotPay Help You With?
Whether you are sick and tired of dealing with administrative issues or don’t have time to bother, we commiserate with you. If you use our practical features, you will be able to resolve many bureaucratic issues in the blink of an eye. We can show you how to copyright a song or a book and explain what music and image copyright laws are. With our assistance, you can file a YouTube or Google takedown notice with ease.
Open DoNotPay in your web browser and get various mundane issues resolved in no time! Take a look at some of the problems we can help you with:
- Dealing with issues with your credit cards
- Taking people and companies to small claims court
- Canceling any subscription or membership
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- Contesting parking tickets