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Hello, I am not sure where to post this question and I cannot login to the family section though I host two websites here. I am missing the seceret password.

 

I am an Aircraft Mechanic by trade and I made a website for my former employer. It has my name listed as the copyright holder on every page and in the meta tags. After leaving my former job I informed my former employer that since he had not paid me for the website and since I was the copyright holder he was no longer allowed to use my content on his website which he hosts here. He has not removed the content now some three weeks later. Is there any recource available to me to have that content removed by TCH or am I forced to seek legal help?

 

Thank you,

 

Lou Kitz

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Welcome to the forums xplanes. To get access to the family section please PM a TCH staff member (the guys whose names are in red at the bottom of the page, like myself) with your domain name and we will send you the password.

 

Website content ownership can be a tough issue. If he's paying for the hosting, and you worked for him while you made the website for him, and you don't have anything to prove ownership other than "copyrighted by" on the site (which could easily be removed by him at any time), then you might have a tough time proving your case either here or in a court of law.

 

That's not saying we don't take copyright issues seriously, because we do. You just need to be able to prove it.

 

Feel free to IM or email me or open a Help Desk ticket if you would like to discuss the issue in detail.

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Welcome to the Forums!

 

tch_welsign.gif

 

As to building a site for someone else, did you spell out in the contract that the content/graphics etc would be yours or theirs?

Were you working as an independent contractor on the website or as part of your job with the company? It might make a difference. A consultation with a lawyer may be your best bet to clarify where you stand. As Tim said, a help desk ticket or PM would be the best way to discuss details.

 

Generally speaking.... no details and no legal opinion offered:

 

Often when you work for a company, the fruits of your labors belongs to them. Ex: folks that work for a company and come up with a new way to market, produce, package a product, or create a new version of the product are often given bonuses for new ideas. But the patent, the rights to that invention, that idea goes to the company as "Work Product".

 

I know that in my own case, my daytime employer pays me to do my job, a portion of it is to create/maintain a website for that company. All images, designs, layout, ideas and text are my own. After the first week with it, the owner of the company told me not to seek approval on any further aspect of the site, to just implement as I see fit. That was years and thousands of pages ago. Should I leave that company, they would own the whole thing even though I was never paid separately for the work.

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Welcome to the forums, xplanes! :dance:

 

Like Samantha said, generally, what employees produce on the job becomes owned by the employer... of course, the best thing would be to seek legal advice.

 

In academic and scientific research, scientists may get the acknowledged/credited for discovering or inventing something. But when it comes to commercializing and licensing it, the university or research institutes is the copyright and patent owner, and they're the one profiting. :D All we scientists get is a name mention. :(

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Thank you for the warm welcomes. I have posted before but I forgot my login so I have logged in anew. :D

 

I did all the work in my own time without being asked to. I have a couple invoices for adding a few planes for sale to the website, but all the rest I did myself on my own time. It sounds like I need something in writing to prove my ownership even though he has nothing in writing or by way of paystub to prove otherwise. I take it I will have to prove a negative to get assistance from TCH. I do see the difficulty on TCHs part, but wouldn't several years of copyright posting both on the page visibly and in the meta tags prove the former company didn't dispute my ownership of the content?

 

Thanks again for the greatings.

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wouldn't several years of copyright posting both on the page visibly and in the meta tags prove the former company didn't dispute my ownership of the content?

Depends who the judge is I suppose. It can be very gray.

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generally, what employees produce on the job becomes owned by the employer...

 

first of all welcome :D

 

anyways yeah this is true, my contract says along the lines of if i invent somthing in company time it and any license or patent is granted to them and becomes their property, im writing a film about english "chavs" a spoof, and also a fire fighter comedy. and planning a documentary spoof about working in a cinema, i get a lot of inspiration from work, last thing i want is odeon getting hold of my ideas!

 

legal advice on your issue is reccomended.

Good luck

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One company I worked for had me sign an agreement that said something to the affect of any notes, sketches, etc. that I might generate while I'm employed, and anything I invent within 6 months of termination of my employment with them, is all theirs. But then they had a pretty big loyalty issue there.

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i had a similar line in my 1st job in a computer shop, i couldnt work for "the opposition" at the same time or within a x mile radius up to 3 months after termination

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but wouldn't several years of copyright posting both on the page visibly and in the meta tags prove the former company didn't dispute my ownership of the content?
Sounds like a question to ask a lawyer.

 

In my case, it wouldn't mean much. I know for a fact there are pages on the site he has never seen. :dance: If he had, he would have commented on them :( And he wouldn't know a meta tag from a q-tip.

 

 

I did all the work in my own time without being asked to. I have a couple invoices for adding a few planes for sale to the website, but all the rest I did myself on my own time.

 

Without being asked to? Was there a meeting of the minds? Any kind of agreement or understanding?

 

I often work on the site out of the office. It's quieter and I have more fun tools at home than in the office! In fact the majority of hours put into it have been from my home machine. My boss knows this and in exchange I have high-speed internet paid by the company as part of my compensation. It's a little thing, but it makes me very happy! :D

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Sounds like a question to ask a lawyer.

 

In my case, it wouldn't mean much. I know for a fact there are pages on the site he has never seen. :dance: If he had, he would have commented on them :( And he wouldn't know a meta tag from a q-tip.

Without being asked to? Was there a meeting of the minds? Any kind of agreement or understanding?

 

I often work on the site out of the office. It's quieter and I have more fun tools at home than in the office! In fact the majority of hours put into it have been from my home machine. My boss knows this and in exchange I have high-speed internet paid by the company as part of my compensation. It's a little thing, but it makes me very happy! :D

 

No formal agreement. it was something I did to help them out when they bought the buisness from another former boss. I just wanted to help get word out about the company. I got a thank you but that was all. No compensation was ever offered or discussed. I setup the hosting, made the content and everything from home. I too have better tools at home and they couldn't afford to take me away from billable hours. He used his credit card to pay for the hosting fees which is fine. I don't want to shut down his website, just not allow him to use my content to compete against me at another job.

 

I guess it is time for a lawyer.

 

Thank you all.

 

Lou

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In some states (Florida included) even if you are salaried (as I am) there are some cases that would still require the employer to pay overtime or provide extra compensation for work outside the office. Whether your situation falls into that category or not...? And whether you have the right to claim the content of the site is yours when it was made for your employer...? Yes, I would say having a legal opinion on this would be worth while.

 

Good Luck!

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