Intellectual Property
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Copyright Law

If you put a book or something else copyrighted by you on the internet who owns it lawfully?

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2015-07-16 19:24:56
2015-07-16 19:24:56

You own the copyright on material you create until you sell it to someone else.

Assuming you own the copyright before you post it, you still own it after you post it. Unfortunately, the public does not universally respect the copyright of online information, and you may find people try to copy it or reuse it as their own. Also be aware that most publishers consider posting on a public website "publication." So, for example, you usually can't sell a short story you've posted on your personal website, because it's already been published.

You will still own the copyright, but you have authorized everyone to make a copy. They own those copies. Like a book that was purchased at a store, they do not need your permission to dispose of the copy you authorized them to make.

When you publish something on the internet, there is a presumption that you expect and implicitly license anyone with access to make at least one copy for their own use anywhere in the world. This is because of the nature of the internet, and to view a file it must be downloaded and copied. However, this license does not extend to other uses for their own profit or commercial benefit (e.g., saving money by downloading fifty copies of a technical journal for your entire staff).

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