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Independent Fashion Blogger Conference: Who Owns Your Content?

By Francesca Robertson [February 14th, 2011] 

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On the first day of New York Fashion Week, I had the privilege of attending the IFB Conference at Milk Studios in the Meatpacking District. In the first panel, Evelyn Tollinche (Senior Counsel of Business and Legal Affairs at MTV) spoke to us about blogger content and protecting your work. She told us, in a very general and informative manner, that blog protection is currently a “gray area”. It is very hard to protect your pictures and words when you put them out there for all to see- regardless if you have copyright signage at the bottom of your blog. Leandra, from The ManRepeller, spoke about how she got a trademark for her blog’s name shortly after creating it and is now trying to copyright certain catch phrases she uses on a daily basis. There was a cumulative agreement from all of the bloggers on the panel that although they love seeing bloggers spread their content over the web, they do want credit and linkage back to their site. Ms. Tollinche ended the panel by making it clear to the bloggers to trademark their blog titles as soon as possible and to copyright all information that is unique to their website. If not, it will be very difficult to prove copyright infringement in a court of law. A fair use argument will be hard to overcome.

(from left to right: Eddie Newton, Mr. Newton• Karen Blanchard, Where Did U Get That • Geri Hirsch, Because I’m Addicted •  Leandra Medine, Man Repeller Rich Tong, Tumblr • Evelyn Tollinche, MTV )

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