Here are five things that you need to know about the legal stuff when you are using social media for your business:
1. You are a Tenant (not an Owner) when you use social media platforms. If you don't follow the rules, the Landlord might kick you out.
2. Make sure you have the right to share the content you are sharing. Don't take other's content without their permission or a license and get a release if you are creating content using other people's likeness.
3. Have a social media policy for your business. This will get everyone on the same page and protect against risks of privacy breaches, defamation or damage to your brand.
4. Copyright laws protect the original content that you create and publish. You can enforce your rights to it.
5. Know the CASL (anti-spam) rules for Canada. These rules cover all commercial electronic messages (i.e. DMs, texts) not just email. Know how you can add people to your email list within the rules.
I have been talking a lot recently about the importance of protecting your business online. An important piece of this is to understand how to use copyright and trademark laws to your benefit.
It is easy to get confused about the differences between copyright protection and trademarks.
The best way that I can boil it down is that Copyright protects your content. Trademarks protect your brand.
Copyright laws (in Canada and internationally through treaties) protect the original content that you create and publish. Online courses, blog posts, photos, podcasts, ebooks, songs can all be copyrighted works.
Copyright protection is automatic upon publication of an original work. Registration is possible (and easy!) but not required.
Using the © symbol along with a copyright notice is a good preventative measure. i.e. © Legal Essentials Inc. 2020. All Rights Reserved.
Trademarks protect elements of your brand which can include business names, product names, slogans,...
When you are asking people to contribute to the creation of content of your business, you should get them to sign a release form .
This will give your business the right to use the content, including in its original form and repurposing the content.
You may be taking pictures or videos at events, recording a podcast or using client testimonials in your promotions.
Using content created by other people for commercial purposes without their written permission could involve risks for your business including damage to your reputation.
In this video, I am talking about how I use Affiliates to promote my digital programs.
As with any legal relationships, it is good to get all of the expectations in writing so that you are both on the same page.
This video gives you an overview of how your content is protected by copyright law and where to put your copyright notices.
For more information about copyright (as well as trademarks and trade secrets), you can check out this free download - Download Here.
And a reminder that this content is protected by copyright law :)
(c) Legal Essentials Inc. 2020. All Rights Reserved
This video addresses three different ways that you can get a contract signed digitally.
These include the following:
(1) Sign on paper and scan (or take a picture)
(2) Use an e-signature program
(3) Use a checkbox to get someone to agree to terms
It is important for your business to create processes that work for you and your clients.
In this video, I talk about the three main types of business contracts to have in your business:
1. Client Contracts
2. Hiring Contracts
3. Rental Contracts
If you have any questions about this topic, you can reach me at [email protected]
If you incorporate your business in Canada, you have a choice between incorporating federally or provincially.
Below is a listing of each of the corporate laws across Canada, along with a link to the government agency who administers the corporate law in that jurisdiction.
- Federal - Canada Business Corporations Act (Canada) - Corporations Canada
- Newfoundland & Labrador - Corporations Act (NL) - Service NL
- Nova Scotia - Companies Act (NS) - Registry of Joint Stock Companies
- Prince Edward Island - Business Corporations Act (PEI) - Corporate and Business Names Registry
- New Brunswick - Business Corporations Act (NB) - Service NB
- Quebec - Business Corporations Act (Quebec) - Quebec Registry
- Ontario - Business Corporations Act (ON) - Service Ontario
- Manitoba - The Corporations Act (MB) - Companies Office Manitoba
- Saskatchewan - The Business Corporations Act (SK) - Corporate Registry
- Alberta - Business Corporations Act (Alberta) - Corporate Registry