Legal Basics for Your Startup
Non-commercial Use • Commercial Use
1. Learn the three contracts are needed on your website to essentially CYA
protecting your website
There are three main ways that you can protect your website by entering into a "contract" with your visitors. It is important to have these three things readily available to your visitors, usually by placing links to them in your footer. If the agreements or contracts are violated but it is found that the visitors didn't have easy access to them, then your case is a little bit weaker then if the links were placed in a accessible location, like the footer.
01. Terms & Conditions
When are you Allowed to Use Other's Work?
Another form of this is the creative commons license, which can also be for non-commercial or commercial use.
FontSquirrel.com and dafont.com offer free and paid fonts for users to download. Some of them are deemed "free for non-commercial use" meaning you can use it on a personal basis but not for official purposes in relation to an established entity or business. For that, you would need a commercial license to use the font.
All of this is further complicated based on how you plan on using the work, if you are modifying it, if you credit back to the original author or artist, etc. Scroll back up to the fair use doctrine for a little more explanation.
02. Website Disclaimer
Having a website disclaimer on your website protects your liability and responsibility.
At the beginning of this lesson I posted a disclaimer that this lesson is for information only and cannot replace the actual advice of a lawyer. Why? Because I'm not a lawyer and I don't want you to sue me if you use what I say and only what I say to 100% protect yourself from legal action. Listen, I've done a lot of research to bring you all this information, but at the end of the day, this is just an overview and is not personalized or individualized. Therefore, that disclaimer protects me (in this instance) and you (on your website) from liability and responsibility for what readers take away from your words and content.
Think about diet, food, and nutrition bloggers. They may swear up and down that Weight Watchers program is the sole reason they lost 75 pounds and therefore if you read their blog then you will also lose 75 pounds. Well, technically you need to consult a medical professional before going on any diet program. A disclaimer would protect the blog from being held responsible should the person sue because Weight Watchers didn't help them lose 75 pounds or a nutritional imbalance was developed because they followed the Weight Watcher program (and you guessed right that Weight Watchers has a disclaimer and other agreements in place to also protect them from the same person).