For business and start-ups in New York, a comprehensive understanding of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is critical for digital success. Knowing how to effectively leverage and protect your digital resources under the state and federal copyright law is essential. It’s important to seek counsel from lawyers conversant in local regulations to ensure your business remains ahead in a rapidly changing digital marketplace.

Whether you’re offering streaming services, sharing copyrighted materials, or operating an ecommerce website, the potential for liability under the DMCA can be daunting. In this article, the top five things you need to consider as you navigate the complexities of DMCA compliance are discussed.

1. You Need to Post a Copyright Policy and Register with the US Copyright Office

DMCA compliance begins with a good understanding of the law. All companies applying copyright law to their digital services should consider registering their work with the US Copyright Office. This is necessary to protect your company’s original work from infringement. Registering copyrightable works is a key way to stop others from using your work and benefitting financially from it.

In addition, DMCA requires those who make their work accessible to the public to post a copyright policy on their website. This policy must inform users that their work is copyrighted, what the rights of the user are, and what the penalties are if they misuse the copyrighted work. This is, in effect, a “see-it-say-it” policy to inform users of potential liability if they take action that infringes upon your copyrighted work.

2. Use a Takedown Notice if Needed

A takedown notice is a specialized form of communication used to remove infringing content from a website or other media. This type of communication is used whenever you discover that someone has violated your DMCA protection. The DMCA allows those who believe their copyright has been violated to send a takedown notice to the website or person hosting the content in question.

Takedown notices must contain specific information in order to be effective. They must include the name of the copyright holder, the original work, and a description of the infringing content. They should also include a statement declaring that the owners of the copyright have not authorized the usage.

3. Create an Effective Counter-Notification Process

If you receive a takedown notice, you will need to take action to respond appropriately. You will need to create an effective counter-notification process. This involves responding to the takedown notice with your own complaint or counter-notice.

When counter-notifying, you need to include in your response detailed information about the original work, the intention of the infringing work, and its context. You also need to include a sworn statement that the content is actually lawful and does not infringe anyone else’s copyright.

4. Take Appropriate Action Against Repeat Downloaders

Under DMCA law, it is necessary to take appropriate action against repeat downloaders. If someone is identified as repeatedly infringing the copyrights of others, you could be held liable. Therefore, it’s important to have an effective policy in place to prevent repeat infringement.

You should use DMCA notifications and takedown notices to document repeat infringers. You should also have policies in place to address repeat infringers and document their activity. This will help you defend any potential legal action brought against you.

5. Have an Attorney that Understands New York Law

It’s important to have an attorney knowledgeable in New York laws to provide you with legal counsel regarding your DMCA compliance efforts. Having an attorney who understands New York laws and regulations in the digital media industry can provide you with the best advice for navigating potential issues.

UpCounsel is an excellent resource for businesses in need of experienced legal counsel. This service has a network of experienced lawyers with an average of 14 years’ experience. They offer business-friendly legal services to businesses of all sizes, enabling you to access the best legal advice on demand.

In summary

Navigating the complexities of DMCA compliance is not a task to be taken lightly. Ensuring your business is in compliance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act requires knowledge and planning. By registering your copyrighted work with the US Copyright Office, posting a copyright policy on your website, taking appropriate action against repeat downloaders, and employing the services of experienced legal counsel, you can protect your business from liability and remain ahead in the rapidly changing digital marketplace.


DMCA Compliance,

Copyright Office,

Takedown Notice