In all transparency, the month after I decided to add a material center to our offerings, I started making a large amount of materials on a graphic design platform utilizing the images and templates there. After an embarrassingly large amount of creation, I discovered that those images or templates could not be used for commercial or resell purposes, which the TSN material center is. I ended up starting from scratch and creating our images to eliminate any risk of inadvertently violating a designer's terms.
The majority of us know that we aren't supposed to scan evaluations, test forms, etc BUT with the rapid increase of digital products and platforms ON TOP of the increase in online material sourcing platforms, it's a good idea to scan through these areas to confirm ultimate compliance with a developer's legal terms.
You may be inadvertently violating Copyright if you are...
Uploading Materials Into a Teletherapy Platform or General Shared Space
When I first started teletherapy, I utilized a basic, videoconferencing software. Now, there are platforms designed specifically for teletherapy. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic forced several brick and mortar companies to shift to online platforms that can be accessed by providers such as Google Drive or OneDrive.
Let's start with the positive-This is so amazing! The increase in digital usage in our field is helping streamline and enhance service offerings, in my option.
However, many of these platforms have a space to upload materials which can be accessed by other providers. The majority of these materials have single use terms attached to them and this then becomes the digital equivalent of scanning a material and distributing it to fellow providers.
The majority of material creators recognize the shortcoming that is affordable material sourcing for providers. Many creators have additional licenses that can be purchased upon discussion. The Therapist Support Network has options for companies to lease out materials and uploaded in that companies/schools/clinics shared space. There are many options that developers are open to that start with a discussion!
Selling or Commercially Utilizing Materials with Clipart with an Unknown Source (or source that doesn't allow that)
Many designers sell their images OR let you utilize them at no cost as long as they're referenced. Don't utilize a picture OR clipart image for commercial or resale purposes unless you know the source.
Sharing One Password to a Material Source Per Team
Many authors and developers offer group discounts. It likely won't be as affordable as multiple providers sharing one password BUT it's aligned with legal terms.
I will end with an admission that I never realized the time that goes into material and clipart creation, in addition to not quite understanding the nuances of copyright when I first added the material center to The Therapist Support Network. There's a reason these terms exist and they can be SO EASY to violate in a digital era. My hope is that this blog assists providers with checking some areas that place them at risk of violating legal terms.
-Elise, TSN Founder
To learn more The Therapist Support Network material center OR our corporate material leasing program, visit http://www.thetherapistsupportnetwork.com