Web content and copyright compliance

Use of content published originally on the web is an unavoidable activity for any seasoned market intelligence, internal competitive intelligence, product marketing, technology research, or strategic planning professional. But copyright issues can arise when using web content.

Organizations, users, and even some news aggregators frequently and wrongly associate free and openly-accessible web content with “copyright-free”. However, web content is almost always copyrighted despite its being easily accessible without payment of a subscription fee. The fact is that copyright infringement can carry substantial financial penalties for companies that distribute or use copyrighted content improperly.

Northern Light brings great experience and attention to copyright compliance in its web content aggregation in the following ways. Northern Light:

  • Provides only indexes, citation metadata, tags and short excerpts or summaries, which are recognized as fair use.
  • Provides excerpts or summaries that are a small fraction of the original text, which are not complete enough to substitute for the original document.
  • Connects clients to the original content whenever possible without serving copies of copyrighted material from our own repositories.
  • Doesn’t specifically target the lede paragraph in news stories for excerpts or summaries.
  • Demonstrates a click-through rate well above 50%; our reporting system can help you document your organization’s use.
  • Does not have search portal application features that facilitate copying, saving, or distributing the full-text from websites.
  • Uses links to the original documents in every use case, promoting the use of the original material. Our portal applications save links when the articles are shared, and post links when articles are posted to collaboration pages. Working with links to the original web pages instead of copies of the content from the web pages is a copyright-compliant means of saving, sharing, and posting.
  • Has a policy and practice to exclude content from any sources that objects to being included.
  • Encourages our clients to have their legal departments review any solutions under consideration for copyright compliance and to do so before the market intelligence or competitive intelligence solution is licensed.