A simple copyright notice lets visitors know your work is protected by copyright laws.

Let’s start this article by pointing out the fact that I am not a lawyer. For any legal advice, you’ll need to contact your attorney, not rely on some random website. This information is not legal advice.

Okay, with that out of the way, onto the copyright notice.

There is some arguments that a copyright notice isn’t necessary today, but it’s still generally accepted as best practice. If nothing else, it’s a simple thing to implement, looks official, and can’t hurt.

What should I put in my copyright notice?

Standard practice is to add the copyright symbol (©), the name of the company, and the years of publication (a span from the first year the website was online to the most recent year new work has been published on the site.

As an example, your copyright notice might look something like this:

© John’s Fudge Factory 2015-2020

Some themes will give you a shortcode for the current year (something like “[current-year]”) that will automatically update when the new year comes around. It’s always a good idea to keep the last date as the current year unless the website has gone completely dormant. If you can find a way to automate updating the year, it will save you from having to go back and update it with a hangover on January 1st.