A service of Stephen W. Workman P.C

Assembled Links Infringement

Unauthorized Copying of Assembled Links

Constitutes Copyright Infringement

The copyright laws of the United States, codified at Title 17 of the U.S. Code, and as incorporated into the Berne Convention on Copyright, provide intellectual property protection to a wide variety of creative works.  Obviously, these laws protect literary and artistic creations.  But they also serve to offer legal protections to individuals who select and assemble pre-existing data or information in a collective or compendium fashion. 

This assembled information or data can be presented in any number of forms.  By way of example, telephone directories, travel guides, maps and encyclopedias are protected under the copyright laws; not because their authors have rights in the underlying facts which comprise the work, but because their efforts in the selective assembly of that underlying information created a useful and beneficial tool for public consumption which theretofore had been nonexistent or unavailable.

The same analysis holds true for web sites which select and assemble links to third party sites.  The links themselves, as they merely represent a factual representation of the Internet addresses of pre-existing web sites, are not in and of themselves copyrightable.  However, once an individual (i.e., the link site webmaster) expends resources and intellectual effort to select and assemble links, his efforts are rewarded with intellectual property rights in the finished work - - in this case, the copyright which attaches to his “link site” creation.

“The Hun’s Yellow Pages,” as a compilation of pre-existing URLs, based upon the selective assembly of specific links from among the universe of available links, is protected under the U.S. Copyright Act, as amended, and the Berne Convention on Copyrights.  The Hun expends significant time, energy and resources in bringing you his daily wisdom.  Accordingly, individuals or entities identified as copying links from the Hun’s Yellow Pages will be considered copyright infringers and will be pursued to the fullest extent of the law.  Penalties for copyright infringement, including the unauthorized copying of links from The Hun’s Yellow Pages, include statutory damages of up to $100,000.00 per act of willful infringement and recovery of attorneys’ fees incurred in taking link thieves to court.