This is the third and final part of my three-part series on protecting a content-based business. In Part One, we talked about the prerequisites for copyright protection. In Part Two, we talked about making sure that you own that stuff.
And here’s part three, where I’m going to list off a bunch of content you can copyright with the Copyright Office. In other words, this is content that is protectable under U.S. copyright law.
Now when I say protectable, I mean able to be protected. So long as it goes back to those three things that I talked about in part one of this series: it’s creative, it’s tangible, and it’s owned by you.
Alright, let’s get to the categories of content you can copyright!
Content You Can Copyright, Category 1: Text.
This can be blog post text, text on a social media posts like an Instagram caption, the script for a video, and show notes for a podcast episode.
Content You Can Copyright, Category 2: Photos.
Blog post photos, photos from social media posts, those all count.
Now what does not count? Stock photos. Even if you’ve paid to use those stock photos, you probably don’t own them unless you commissioned a photographer to take some stock photos for you. And even then, check your agreement with the photographer to make sure you understand who owns those photos.
Category 3: Video. (Obviously.)
But watch out for any stock video elements. You probably don’t own those.
Content You Can Copyright, Category 4: Audio.
That can include any music you created, that includes podcast episodes, and that includes audio trainings.
Again, just like with stock photos, if you’ve paid for a license to use music in any of those settings, whether it’s your podcast intro or whatever it is, you might not own that music. A license is not ownership, it’s permission.
Category 5: Your Opt-In.
Opt-ins can definitely be protectable under US copyright law. This includes:
- Downloadable PDFs,
- audio trainings,
- templates you’ve designed,
- even quizzes.
Those things are all protectable.
Content You Can Copyright, Category 6: An Online Course.
An online course is chocked full of different content you can copyright. It’s full of:
- Worksheets (aka, text),
- Maybe audio recordings,
- Maybe infographics.
All of that creative stuff that goes into an online course? Yep, that’s protectable under copyright law.
Finally, Content Category 7: Graphic Designs.
Graphic designs are artwork, and they are definitely protectable under copyright law. That includes:
- Your pins that you pin to Pinterest — so long as you own all of the elements that go into the creation of that pin.
- Podcast cover art,
- Video thumbnails, and
- Graphic designs that are encompassed into your video.
So I just ran through a bunch of things that are encompassed into content-based businesses and that are protectable under US copyright law.
I hope this series helps you when you think about protecting your content-based business!