How to protect your designs on the internet after you published them?

Publishing their work online to get more clients while living in the constant fear of others copying their work without attributing it to them is a grave concern that continues to disturb all designers. While it is almost practically impossible to protect your work from being copied without spending huge sums of money on acquiring legal assistance, there do exist some ways that will help you in preventing your work from being copied or misused.

1) Use of a copyright disclaimer

Use of a copyright disclaimer by Saad Raja

You can always post a message of ‘all copyrights reserved’ on your website to let the visitors know that not copying the work would be illegal. This strategy might not eliminate the chances of your work getting copied but will still create awareness in users about copyright laws creating a fear of being charged for it if they submit copied work.

2) Use of watermarks

Use of watermarks by Saad Raja

Even though you might not be in favor of changing the look of your designs by adding watermarks, this strategy does help in preventing other designers or internet users from stealing your images and designs.

3) Apply licensing

Apply licensing by Saad Raja

Under this protection technique, you need to set the terms and conditions under which people can use your work. Licensing allows the public to view and use your work but grants you control over its distribution implying that you still have the copyrights to your work, but you are allowing people to make use of your designs in a manner that is acceptable to you. There are six types of licenses available for the protection of your work:

  • Attribution
  • Non-commercial attribution
  • ShareAlike attribution
  • NoDerivs attribution
  • Noncommercial –ShareAlike-attribution
  • Noncommercial-NoDerivs-attribution

As a designer, you have the option of choosing any of the licensing categories depending on the extent of authority you want the public to have when replicating or using your designs. Licensing will allow you to control whether you want the people to use your work for personal uses or for commercial uses to make profits.

So, whenever you publish your next design online but do not want other people drawing similar advantages out of your creativity and hard work, do consider the above protection methods which might decrease your work’s vulnerability to theft.

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