Legal Issues for Bloggers

There’s a great article on Blog Coach today, recapping some of the important issues covered at BlogHer ’08 conference in San Francisco. Especially interesting to me, was the link to a roundup of legal issues for bloggers. It’s been on my mind lately: the fact that I don’t really know much about the law, as it pertains to a private publisher. I thought I’d share it and see if anyone has any other resources about blogging and the law.

I was intrigued, since I received a Cease and Desist comment today regarding a couple of words I used. They just happen to be the name of a magazine, and supposedly, I’m not allowed to use them in conversation. Uh, yeah. Anyway, I found a great resource in plain language, describing some of the legal issues we bloggers should know about.

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) Bloggers’ FAQ: Overview of Legal Liability Issues

Here’s something I learned about Trademarks today:

From Chilling
“Sometimes, you might use a trademark without even knowing someone claims it as a trademark. That is permitted as long as you’re not making commercial use in the same category of goods or services for which the trademark applies. Anyone can sell diesel fuel even though one company has trademarked DIESEL for jeans. Only holders of “famous” trademarks, like CocaCola, can stop use in all categories, but even they can’t block non-commercial uses of their marks.”

Also, you can report your C&D letter to Chilling Effects and they will log it in their database, and “help present the issues as lawyers think about them and answer general questions.”

By the way, anyone usiong the words “real life” in your writing: You’ll be receiving a scary comment from me soon 😉


About Sarah Pinnix

I'm a mom, blogger, vlogger, libertarian. I love Jesus, and my husband, too. Social Media Strategist for a Non-Profit (All statements here are solely my own)


  1. Great and informative post. I had used the phrase "knuckleheads in the news" on a post. I got a C&D from the copyright holder; I didn't even know there was a copyright. That phrase gets used so much I thought it was just a common phrase!


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