Things You Might Like to Know about Copyrights Written by Jan K.
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before yours. It's a good idea to formally copyright any text that you are planning to market. So, if you're convinced that world population-at-large is in desperate need of "Breeding Guppies, What Every Ichthyologist Needs to Know" and you plan to sell it on Ebay for $19.95, you should apply for a formal copyright. Just having copyright, however, doesn't mean that other people can't quote your work. They may do so, as long as you are given full credit for having written it prior to their use. This is called a "reference" or a "citation" and generally, whatever passage is being quoted will appear offset in quotation marks (so that reader can visualize which words belong to someone other than author of text in which quote appears). Of course, at present contingent of Copyright Police is not up to tracking down every single instance of copyright infringement, and chances are that not everyone cites original authors as scrupulously as they should, so beware of whom you casually let look at or read your text (or to whom you give a copy). Copyrights are not forever. Typically, a copyright lasts for 50 years past natural life of original author. Authors' heirs may sometimes re-apply for copyrights, but generally written texts that are this old are considered "public domain" and may be reproduced without paying author's family a royalty fee. In publishing world, you will find that many publications require that you relinquish your copyrights to work in return for having your work published. This is a fairly standard procedure—unless your name happens to be Stephen King or Danielle Steele. Once you've relinquished your copyright to a given work, you can not sell or submit that text again unless you get express approval from publisher that now owns copyright. There are sites on World Wide Web where you can post your work for others to read or use as they see fit, so-called "free sites." In cases such as this, there should be a disclaimer that anyone who uses or reproduces your work must give you full credit. Whether this happens all time is certainly a matter for some speculation, but your safeguard is that you own copyright and if you find that someone is profiting from your work and that you have not been compensated, you can file a copyright infringement suit against them. As of date of this article, current copyright fee is $30. All instructions and necessary forms can be found on U.S. Copyright Office's web site: http://lcweb.loc.gov/copyright/. I have copyrighted several texts and advise that you mail your application with a "Return Receipt Requested" from U.S. Post Office. This is your proof that Copyright Office has received your copyright application.
Jan K., The Proofer is a full-time freelance proofreader and copyeditor. In business since 1995, she has enjoyed working for a diverse world-wide clientele, covering subject matter including academic research, medical law, consumer surveys, and self-help materials. Please visit http://www.janktheproofer.com for more information.
Protecting your on-line real estateWritten by David Seitz
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You can also contact General Information Services and request Information Dissemination Organization's US Patent and Trademark Catalog (ask for it by name). This is a free catalog and contains detailed information on all aspects of copyright protection. 1-800-786-9199
You can request trademark and patent sales information from 1-800-972-6382 firstname.lastname@example.org
Take time out today and see what is available to you. Why wait until you are a victim? Take time to research above resources. Many people do not realize that copyright registration fee is only $20. Keep in mind that federal trademark and patent registration fees are much higher, but a copyright may be all that you require to securely document your work.
Federal trademarks can be very expensive, but in some states - Tennessee, for instance - you can register your trademark with state for as little as $5. This protects you from others within your state stealing your information, and should be done even for company names, logos, slogans, etc. Contact your Secretary of State's office in your state capitol for more information.
The US Patent and Trademark Office placed its trademark database online. Now you can search database directly at. Do you know how expensive a patent search can be? Do it here free: http://www.uspto.gov mdb/
I stress to you once again - DO NOT PUT IT OFF. The longer you wait, less likely you will be to bother doing it at all. Your copyright registration will be good for many years and only takes a little time to complete.
David Seitz - CEO Virtual Imagination Inc. Published by: Virtual Imagination Inc. Brought to you by The Helping Hand Internet Marketing Newsletter. http://www.helpinghand-newsletter.com grab your free subscription now: mailto:email@example.com