Softgiving’s DMCA Process
Softgiving’s process begins when a copyright holder (or someone acting on their behalf) submits a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) takedown notice to us, claiming that their content is published on WordPress.com without their permission. They can submit a DMCA takedown notice via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or printed letter addressed to 101 Marietta Street, Unit 2475, Atlanta GA 30303. After that, here’s what happens:
- Softgiving reviews the notice.
- If the notice is complete and valid, Softgiving removes the content.
- Softgiving notifies the owner and replies to the copyright holder to let them know we’ve taken action.
- If the owner believes they have the rights to use the content or that the notice was submitted incorrectly, Softgiving reviews and processes their counter-notice.
- Softgiving restores the content if the copyright holder doesn’t take further legal action within 10 business days.
Step 1: Softgiving Reviews the Takedown Notice
When Softgiving first receives a DMCA takedown notice, we review it to confirm that all of the required elements are present. Because the DMCA is law, we cannot accept a notice that’s missing any of the following pieces:
- Verify that the content in question is hosted by Softgiving.
- Contact Softgiving directly via email or address as detailed above.
In addition to reviewing notices for completeness, Softgiving also assesses their validity. Although Softgiving respect copyrights, we also support everyone’s right to use the content within the boundaries afforded by the law. Specifically, we reject notices that appear to be fraudulent or where the content identified applies to the following scenario:
- Isn’t copyrightable (for example, a person’s name).
- Is content that the complaining party may not own the copyright for (for example, the subject of a photo isn’t necessarily the copyright owner of the photo).
- Is fair use of copyrighted content.
Step 2: Softgiving Removes the Content
If Softgiving receives a complete and valid DMCA takedown notice, we remove the content and replace it with a DMCA removal message. For example, if Softgiving receives a DMCA takedown notice for an image within a post, we’ll replace only that image with a placeholder and insert text at the bottom of the post. The rest of the post will be unaffected.
Step 3: Softgiving Notifies the Owner and Reply to the Copyright Holder
Whenever Softgiving removes content from in response to a DMCA takedown notice we email the content owner and provide a copy of the original complaint. We also notify the copyright holder to let them know that the allegedly infringing content has been removed.
If the owner wants to republish the post, they can edit the post to remove the specific content at issue. (This is only an option when only a portion of a post was identified as infringing.) After making the changes, the owner must reply to our message to request the removal of the DMCA takedown message.
Content owners cannot, under any circumstances, republish the allegedly infringing content. Republishing content that was removed after receipt of a valid DMCA takedown notice could result in the content being permanently suspended. If the counter-notice procedure is followed, we’ll restore the content at the appropriate time.
Step 4: Softgiving Reviews and Process the Counter-Notice
Sometimes an owner will disagree with the DMCA takedown notice, believing that they are lawfully using the content. We encourage owners to submit a counter-notice if this is the case. After reviewing the counter-notice for completeness, Softgiving replies to the owner and notifies the copyright holder, providing them with a copy of the counter-notice.
Step 5: Softgiving Restores the Content
In spite of the counter-notice, the owner cannot republish the content because the copyright holder then has 10 business days to initiate legal proceedings against the owner to prevent them from using their content. If at the end of the 10 business days, the copyright holder hasn’t initiated legal proceedings, the DMCA requires Softgiving to restore the content.
Last Updated: 7/22/2020