In our brave new world where millions of ordinary people are copyright holders of snaps they publish to social media or videos they upload to YouTube, awareness of copyright law is at an all-time high.
Evidence is easily found on Reddit, where users of /r/copyright and similar subs answer questions including: “Can I print t-shirts with Batman on the front if I only do a few and give them away?” and “Is it copyright if nobody knows I copied a song and changed it so it sounds nothing like the original?”
Similar gems are a regular occurrence on YouTube. Who hasn’t seen copies of well-known tracks uploaded in full and protected by the statement: “I do not own this song. Full credits go to the copyright owner. No copyright infringement intended.”
And then there’s the increasing number of channels posting ‘copyright disclaimers’ citing Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, stating that since everything on the channel is ‘fair use’, channel owners are exempt…