If you are the creator of a news aggregation website, what should you do to protect yourself against lawsuits? Short of licensing all of the content you use, there are certain best practices that you can adopt that are likely to reduce your legal risk.
- Reproduce only those portions of the headline or article that are necessary to make your point or to identify the story. Do not reproduce the story in its entirety.
- Try not to use all, or even the majority, of articles available from a single source. Limit yourself to those articles that are directly relevant to your audience.
- Prominently identify the source of the article.
- Whenever possible, link to the original source of the article.
- When possible, provide context or commentary for the material you use.
Content Curation and Content Sharing Best Practices in General
1. Be Part of the Content Ecosystem
Be part of the content ecosystem, not just a re-packager of it. Often, people think of themselves as either creators or curators as if these two things are mutually exclusive. The most successful curators include sites like The Huffington Post, that embrace the three-legged-stool philosophy of creating some content, inviting visitors to contribute some content, and gathering links and articles from the web.
2. Follow a Schedule
Audiences expect some regularity, and they’ll reward you for it. It doesn’t need to be a schedule that you can’t keep up with. If you want to curate three new links a day, and write one big post a week, that’s a schedule.
3. Embrace Multiple Platforms
It used to be that your audience came to you. Not anymore. Today content consumers get their information on the platform of their choosing. That means you should consider posting short bursts on Tumblr, images on Pinterest, video on YouTube, and community conversations on Facebook.
4. Engage and Participate
Having a voice as a curator means more than creating and curating your own work. Make sure you’re giving back by reading others and commenting on their posts. A re-tweet is one of the easiest ways to help build relationships with fellow bloggers and curators.
5. Share. Don’t Steal.
Take the time to give attribution, links back, and credit. The sharing economy works because we’re each sharing our audiences, and providing the value of our endorsements.
6. Identify Meaningful Topics & Sources
To get started with a content curation strategy, it’s important to start with your audience in mind. What topics and content formats that relate to your business will they find meaningful? You can find content related to your business, such as industry trends and statistics, tips and how-tos, informational or entertaining videos, or community-related sources to curate.
7. Curate Strategically Across Sites
With most social media and content marketing strategies, a variety of sites play a part. So make sure you’re curating content strategically across all your sites. For example, you can schedule tweets and Facebook posts that link to interesting content, but try not to inundate your audience with the same content posted on all your sites at the same time.
8. Quote & Cite Carefully
When quoting or citing someone else’s content, it’s important to only quote a small portion of the work, typically only about 10-15% of the whole article.
9. Share Infographics Wisely
Most of the time, the creators of infographics expect them to be shared on other blogs, websites, and sources that will link back to the original source. This strategy can help a website build inbound links, boosting its relevance in search. So, if you discover an infographic you want to re-post on your site, check to see if it has a copyright notice on the bottom that restricts the resharing of the unique image first.
Resources used for this article:
5 Tips for Great Content Curation
What’s the law around aggregating news online? A Harvard Law report on the risks and the best practices » Nieman Journalism Lab
Content Curation: 5 Tips for Sharing Content Online