Let the copyright wars begin. Since the internet has started promulgating digital versions of what should have been copyrighted materials, all hell has broken loose. Artists, writers, singers, etc. claim to have lost more than half of their usual revenue because their goods are being distributed, digitally online. While some file-sharing programs are facing lawsuits today, there are others who ingeniously dodged the legal case. Now, how does an online entrepreneur stand in the midst of the tension between online sharing and online marketing?
That’s a very hard question to answer, and people are more or less still wading in the gray areas. While websites like Youtube has made it very easy for people to “share” videos with each other, it’s also one of the most dangerous terrains to be in when we’re talking about copyright infringements. Here are things online businesses can do to dodge the usual legal traps.
As much as possible, don’t use copyrighted material when you’re making your videos. Start from scratch, and it doesn’t matter if you’re hiring an amateur to play the guitar solo in your background. Try the original approach too when you’re saying your spiel. There are a lot of editing programs now which can overhaul amateur videos and make them look like they were done by professionals.
If you have to use a popular song, make sure that you credit the artist. At least you can argue that you’re promoting his/her skills too, and not just claiming the whole work as your own.
It’s not all about announcing events or sales, or making a cute little video that’s strangely reminiscent of the advertisement you’ve seen on TV a few days ago. The internet is a virtual library. People surf the net looking for useful information. You can promote your store and your skills simply by giving away free do-it-yourself tips. If you’re selling contact lenses, you can post videos on hosting sites like Youtube about applying smoky eye make-up or taking care of your lenses properly. While you’re doing that, try to be as pretty and charming as possible.