Website Copyright Dates

Another New Year has come around and it’s time for most websites to update the copyright.

Why Update Your Copyright Date?

For starters, nothing says ‘I haven’t done anything to my website for years’ quite as much as an old copyright.

The web convention is to put the current year, or the year the site or content was first published, followed by the current year, e.g. 1999-2014.

From a true copyright standpoint of protecting the content of your website, the best action is actually not updating the copyright unless you update the content to offer the most copyright protection. However, since it is electronic, it is hard to prove copyright dates this way, so a copyright date online itself doesn’t offer much protection for your content. The best and most expensive solution is to actually pay for a copyright. A less expensive solution that has held up in court is to print out your website, put it in an envelope and mail it to yourself. Opening the sealed envelope in court is pretty good proof that you created the content on or before the post mark date.  More on the varieties of copyright date options to use on websites.

Since the copyright date doesn’t offer much copyright protection and most websites are most concerned with converting visitors into leads and clients, most websites should be keeping their copyright up to the current date.

Keeping That Copyright Up to Date Forever 

Website owners who update their own sites merely need to be reminded to do it…and on a well constructed site it will probably take you or your webmaster less time to update your copyright site wide than it does to read this article.
Website owners who don’t update their own site or have someone that updates it should consider changing the copyright date once so that it does not need to be updated by

  1. either forgoing the copyright date altogether or
  2. programming in an automatic update feature.

Of course, that begs the question of why you aren’t making regular changes to your website, but that’s a different article (coming soon).

Bower Web Solutions would be glad to take a look at your website and let you know what would be involved in updating your copyright. Please contact us and for more information