How To Protect Yourself Legally As A Blogger?

One source of income I got from running my online business is through affiliate marketing. And after applying for one of my first affiliate program I got asked the question:

"Do you have a privacy policy page on your website?"

And the answer obviously was no. I started my blog with no previous experience, I learn on the go and keep learning. The most important is to not commit the same mistake twice. So I did my little investigation and turns out that if:

- You are collecting emails to create your mail list

- You are using cookies to track your traffic and audience behaviour

- You are selling products or services as an affiliate marketer

Well, you need a privacy policy or might get in trouble!

So how to get one you may wonder?

Luckily there are some FREE generators online that can solve your problem. So here are below your top priority legal things to do as a blogger.

1. Copyright

If you do not want your hard labour worked to be stolen by a copycat who will then promote it on their website legally without crediting you, you have to copyright your blog so that everything you publish on your blog is recognised legally as being your intellectual property.

Click here to access the copyright generator I personally used and just follow the steps.

2. Terms And Conditions

Now that your blog is copyrighted you need a Terms of Use/Service for your blog.  This is a page with a mix of legal words that insure your are not responsible for how people use and post on your site. Once it is generated you can cut and paste it into a new page of your website.

You can use this website to generate the document for you

3. Privacy Policy

Basically a privacy policy for blogs says whether you will sell their emails, how often you will use their information to contact them, and so on. Again it is a page with a mix of legal words to back you up just in case something happens.

You can use this website to generate the document for free.

4. Disclosure policy

As I said earlier, if you are making money via sponsored posts or are running ads on your website, for instance, you need a disclosure policy. Many sites require you to have one easily accessible on your blog or website. 

You use this generator to make yours

5. Disclaimer Policy

Finally, you need a Disclaimer Policy for your blog.  A disclaimer policy protects you– your rights, free speech, your content, etc...

This protects you in case someone follows one of your recommendations and it does not work for them - they can't sue you and make you pay for their failure.

Here is the free generator also you can use to legally protect your website. 

Overall, it is just a matter of filling the forms on each generator, copy/paste the content, create a new page on your website for each policy and display it somewhere visible at the bottom of your website. It took me less than an hour to do it and I'd rather be safe than sorry. So if you are thinking of using your blog to run your business, I highly recommend you to do it as soon as you can!

Also, note that from May 25th, 2018, your business will also need to be GDPR compliant or you might risk paying a fine up to 20,000,000 euros (that's a lot of zeros!!) or 4% of your annual turnover. So make sure to take care of this as soon as possible, you still have couple weeks. If you need some information, here is what you need to know about GDPR as a marketer

Note: I am in no way a legal expert, and this is just my opinion from my own experience. It is always good to have the recommendations of an expert when dealing with legal documents.

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