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Copyright Guidelines

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I am bringing up this topic because I am seeing more and more of our WXFORUM member websites that appear to be violating copyright laws. Perhaps what we need is a section in WXFORUM that provides some guidance for both new and old members relative to what is and is not acceptable as far as website content goes.

For example, I see many websites with graphic and textual content that has been grabbed directly from commercial weather websites like Intellicast and many others for use on our personal weather websites. Looking at their Terms of Usage clauses, they very specifically state that all content is copyrighted and is not to be used in any manner without written permission. I really doubt that anyone has been able to get such written permission other than from sites like WU which has specifically given permission to use their content by anyone who uploads data to them for usage. Unfortunately, such policies are a rarity.

Actually, that would go for any sites used: private, commercial, and government without written or implied consent...

Old Tele man:

In general, those sites won't bother lower traffic hobby type sites as long as the content used is credited in some way ( ' image courtesy of branded site ' ).  They get a whole bunch more fussy if there is anything in the way of ads, referral links or anything else they consider commercial content.  A site that is gaining more attention and traffic might get their eye too if they feel their content is helping get that traffic.

It's always best to ask them though before using anything.

Copyright does protect most content, but there are laws that allow use of copyright material for educational and I think some non-profit organization use. I don't know how far you can push that on your weather sites nor if something like this was or ever will be challenged in the court room.


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