Copyrights, Standards, and Accessibility  
What is copyright?

A law (or set of laws) that protects creators of intellectual property

What is intellectual property?

Almost anything created through a creative or intellectual process

What can be copyrighted?

Tangible forms of intellectual property (not ideas or concepts)

Protects the creator/owner
         Focus is on protecting financial gains


Only the copyright holder can
  • Reproduce the material
  • Create derivative works
  • Distribute or copy the work
  • Perform the work
  • Exhibit or control who exhibits the work


How you can lose your copyrights
  • Sell them to someone else
  • Create work using the resources of your employer (including time)
  • Sign a work-for-hire contract
  • Voluntarily put work in the public domain


Can I use copyrighted materials?

yes, if the intent falls under Fair Use:

Provides for exceptions to the copyright restrictions in selected cases

  • for non-profit educational purposes

  • in a parody of another work

  • to critique the work itself

  • as part of research or scholarship

  • purely for your own use and doesn't impact the income of the creator

  • not a substantial enough portion of the whole to impact the income of the creator

yes, if you obtain permission from copyright owner

Written works



  • May need to obtain rights from distribution company, writer, producer, director, and/or one or more actors

  • Use a specialized law firm

Licensed Collections

An alternative to chasing down rights is to purchase royalty free collections

  • Clip Art
  • Stock Photography
  • Buyout Music and/or Sound Effects
  • Stock Footage

Sample Stock Sites:


Copyright vs. Plagiarism
  • Copyright governs your legal right to use materials created by another, particularly if income is involved

  • Plagiarism governs your ethical responsibility to provide credit to the original author or creator of a work


history of
copyright laws
1909 to 1978 (pre-1923: public domain)
  • works required copyright notice
  • copyright period of 28 to 150 years from registration


1978 to 1989
  • works required copyright notice
  • copyright for individuals lasts 50 years from death of creator
  • copyright for corporations lasts 75 years from registration
1989-1998 (The Berne Convention)
  • copyright notice optional (works copyrighted when created)
  • copyright term lengths the same
1999-present (Digital Millennium Copyright Act/Term Ext)
  • copyright protection extended an additional 20 years
  • additional protections for digital material, and for ISPs


Web Standards
  • HTML - HyperText Markup Language
  • XML - Extensible Markup Language
  • CSS - Cascading Style Sheets
  • DOM - Document Object Model
  • XHTML - Estensible HTML
  • JavaScript
  • Java
Who is involved
  • W3C - World Wide Web Consortium  that includes Microsoft, Adobe, Apple, Netscape, etc
  • WaSP - Web Standards Project - Grassroots coalition
  • ECMA International - European Computers Manufacturing Association


What is the Advantage?
  • Accessibility
    • For people
    • For Software Developers
  • Stability - forward/backward compatibility


How Compliant are browsers?

Browser Support Chart


How can I tell if I am compliant with the current standard?

HTML Validation (W3C)
CSS Validator (W3C)

Web Site Accessibility

Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990 (ADA)

  • Biggest Civil Rights legislation since 1964
  • ADA has caused more legislation that specifically applies to web development

The Web Accessibility Initiative  (WAI)
  • In 1997  the WWW consortium (W3C) set out to make the WWW more accessible for individuals with disabilities

Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998, Section 508

Effects Federal Agencies development of technology after August 2000

  •  When they "develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology" it must be accessible to federal employees with disabilities.
  • When a member of the public who has a disability must be able to gain access to the information or services offered by each agency.

WAI involved in developing techniques, a checklist and  Authoring Tool Guidelines.  for making web content accessible

HTML can be tested on a text base web browser such as Lynx to prove it is accessible.


Web Site Usability
  • The approach to making websites easier to use for all users without requiring special training. 
  • This builds on accessibility and standards.

Examples of technologies that have invested in usability:

  • IPod
  • Google

Government website on usability

Web Site Usability Checklist

Web Usability Consultants

GOOGLE: SA of User Exp...(video)


Areas of study in usability:

  • UI - User Interface
  • HCI - Human Computer Interface


EUP Policies

EUP Policies

EUP Web Policy