As part of our internet law & e-commerce practice, we provide DMCA compliance services.

DMCA provides protection to copyright owners as well as a safe harbor for content aggregators. Therefore, all Internet businesses that allow the uploading of content or regularly repost content as news should consider complying with the DMCA. Our Internet and ecommerce attorneys provide guidance on DMCA compliance and best practices for website owners.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)

The DMCA is a copyright law that criminalizes illegal reproduction and dissemination of copyrighted material. On the other hand, DMCA also provides a safe harbor for online service providers that meet certain statutory standards. The two principle innovations of the DMCA are the safe harbor provision as well as the takedown notice and process. Specifically, the safe harbor exempts Internet service providers and other intermediaries from direct and indirect liability through DMCA compliance.

DMCA Compliance for Safe Harbor

The DMCA safe harbor provisions arise from the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act (“OCILLA”) section of the DMCA. The aim of OCILLA is to balance the competing interests of copyright owners against digital users and online service providers.

Due to the proliferation of the Internet, social media platforms, and hosting websites, online service providers have increasingly become unwitting hosts of material that potentially infringes another's copyright. Websites that host forums, blogs, or encourage user-submissions of content are all vulnerable. Therefore, website owners should ensure DMCA compliance to help protect against copyright infringement liability.

Our attorneys assist with DMCA Agent registration with the Copyright Office as well as help implement processes for proper takedowns.

The DMCA Takedown Notice

OCILLA allows copyright owners to send “DMCA takedowns” to online service providers for prompt removal of copyrighted work from websites. A proper DMCA takedown notice requires copyright owners to follow statutory procedure. Notice requires certain elements be included in the copyright infringement letter. If a website owner hosts infringing content, exemption from liability will apply if the takedown notice is handled expeditiously.

We assist copyright owners with enforcing intellectual property rights through DMCA and file takedown notices. We also help online service providers in claims of copyright infringement as well DMCA compliance efforts.

DMCA Disputes and Copyright Litigation

Read more about our litigation services at our intellectual property litigation overview page and our business litigation overview page, including Copyright Litigation, Copyright Protection, Copyright Registration, and Copyright Infringement Defense.

Additional Insights Regarding the DMCA

For more information regarding the DMCA, see our Legal Insights and Industry Solutions pages.