I first learned about My Free Copyright while making my Zazzle store. I wanted to use my photographs, but I didn't want to give up my rights to them. I was also concerned that photographs of family members not appear somewhere illustrating someone's article and perhaps even being associated with ideas I do not share.
Online friends recommended using the My Free Copyright site. Basically how it works is you upload your creation and it is given a digital fingerprint, which is emailed to you. Thus a record of your photo or drawing is created which can be held as proof in case an issue comes up in which someone whether intentionally or unwittingly uses your work without your consent. No one can claim the work for his or her own because you have proof that it belongs to you.
The site is simple and easy to use. After registering on the site for free, you are ready to go. Click "Protect My Creation." Choose what type of copyright you want to protect -- File (illustration, photograph, poem, ebook, music, lyrics, etc.), Blog/Podcast, or Webpage. When you choose "File," you can give your image a title. Be sure to give it a descriptive title you will remember so that you have an easy time identifying it later. You can then enter a description of the image. Again, be as detailed as you can for your own benefit and ease of use. There's a drop-down category list you must choose from that lets you distinguish whether the file you're uploading is a photograph, art, illustration, music, novel, etc.
You then upload your file to the site and your digital fingerprint is automatically created. My Free Copyright sends you an email confirming your new digital fingerprint. You can also log into the site and look up your information under your account.
In addition to protecting individual pieces, My Free Copyright provides you with the script for putting this little symbol on your page or website:
When you use the free service at My Free Copyright, you have the peace of mind of knowing you have that extra bit of security that you can keep ownership of your work even after using it online.