5 Content Publishing Mistakes

You have a range of tools at your disposal to get your message out to your readers. Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email newsletters and even printed material are all waiting and ready for you to put your words in place.

The problem, of course, is what are you going to talk about?

As your deadline approaches and you’re stumped with what you’re going to write, the temptation to look outside traditionally accepted means of publication is almost irresistible. But resist it you must. Here are five common content publishing mistakes made on an alarmingly frequent basis:

Plagiarism: Only the original content producer has the ability to grant you permission to use a piece of content, whether it’s an article, a photo or a video. Even if you provide proper attribution, you can’t simply copy and paste a piece of content without running afoul of copyright laws.

Trademark infringement:  When a magazine like Consumer Reports reports something nice about your product, it’s flattering and it’s tempting to mention it in every communication you send out. But Consumer Reports has a very strict “No Commercial Use” policy that means you aren’t allowed to use the name of the magazine, or the ratings in any commercial setting. Similarly, you might want to support your local professional baseball team by pasting their logo on your website, or talking about the great sale you’re running before Super Bowl Sunday. But doing so puts you at risk of a call from the team, and the sanctioning body’s attorneys.

Improper sharing: There’s a very fine line between social sharing of content and stealing it. You may think that you’re helping the content producer by attributing a piece of copy on your Facebook page, but by not sharing it by utilizing the sharing tools at your disposal, it’s no better than plagiarizing it.

Non-Compliance: Companies are incredibly protective of their brands. If you’re a retailer and you’re representing those products in a non-compliant manner, you’re risking your relationship with your supplier.

If you’re interested in learning more about this topic, I recently wrote a blog post for Fierce Content Management that describes tips on how to ensure your editorial copy, photos and videos are as clean and clear of violations as possible.

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