Originally Posted by pacanis
...I thought anything on the internet was fair game. Otherwise you could not copy and save it, like some websites have a "lock" on their pics and text. This gets bantered around on other forums, too.
For a long time it was kind of that way--there were no protections for writers/photographers online. I know that you used to have to go through a lot of red tape to get a copyright, but I learned (from a couple writing groups I belonged to) that now, what you write online is considered copyrighted. That is a big deal for people in online writing groups because if you post a story or part of one, without that protection someone else could take your story and publish it as their own.
You can still copy and save things, but that still doesn't make it any more legal than copying and using pages from a book. Both happen all the time. The Internet is great, but it is such a hard thing to regulate. Well, I've probably made it as clear as mud! You can tell I'm not a copyright lawyer! I do know there are some really weird rules about what you can copy and use. For instance, to tape a show from the TV and show it to a class is okay, but technically you are only allowed to show it a certain number of times and then you are supposed to delete it. It's all crazy. And did you know that it is illegal to show a Disney movie to a class?