Wasn't sure where to post this, but I'm sure it's more relevant to this section as a webmaster has likely dealt with it.

referring to said article (or any for that matter): http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/feb/3/laufman-the-snowden-effect/

Am I allowed to simply copy and paste the entire article itself and put it on a website with a link to the original article, or would that be directing traffic from their advertisements?

3 Answers 3


If you read their Terms of Use, you'll see that you can not do what you want in a legal way.

  • there can't even exist an unaffiliated forum to comment on the article's content? with no links to or from it?
    – user35827
    Feb 5, 2014 at 4:25
  • Yes it can, they own the writing, but not the facts. You can have a site where you talk about news they have with no problem, you can link to them with no problem, you can even copy/past short fragments from their articles on posts of the site you mention, what you can't do is take significant parts of the text or try to get the credit of the writing. If you are going to have a site that presents/talks about news, it's much better if you have multiple sources and you try to use always at least two on each post/article.
    – PatomaS
    Feb 5, 2014 at 5:10

Best practice is to write your own article sourcing them as the facts.

For entertainment purposes only: Is your attorney better than their's?

For a better understanding of fair use many law schools have information online such as ... https://fairuse.stanford.edu/overview/fair-use/four-factors/ ... Matters of law are above my pay grade.

As facts are not copyright-able any more than single words. It is the collection of them together in a certain order which is copyrighted. You can write your own article.

Will they care?

Nobody can answer that but them. Also you should note: They have the right to not care on Monday, but then decide to care on Friday. The same as if the intellectual property were physical property. Your neighbor may not care on Monday if you use his garden hose, but on Friday can say you can not use his hose. You can not claim but he allowed me on Monday so he must allow me on Friday ... it does not work that way.


No matter what they say, you are protected under Fair Use as long as you are both located in the USA, and it is for criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and/or research you should be fine.

Also, your case can get stronger or weaker (Quoting the US Patent Office on this)

The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes

    The nature of the copyrighted work

The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole

    The effect of the use upon the potential market for,
    or value of, the copyrighted work

Doesn't our patent office make perfect sense. But in other words if you don't steal their money with it (and your not, your even giving them good link karma), you are in an even better position.

While you loose a bit on number 3, the amount copied, you should definitely still be fine.

Good luck and if they try to sue you you can always move to Panama :)

The US Patent Office's website on this is here.

  • 1
    Copying and pasting the entire article would be very unlikely to be fair use, regardless of whether or not you made money. May 12 at 18:51

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