I update a "last updated" critter that is totally [email protected] Just so that every future reader is clear: the USA copyright is just as automatic as that of basically every other country.
This means if you update the date, you are no longer claiming the copyright for the original date and that means if somebody has copied the work in the meantime and they claim its theirs on the ground that their publishing the copy was before your claim, then it will be difficult to establish who is the originator of the work.
Therefore, if the claim is based on common law copyright (not formally registered), then the date should be the date of first publication.
You first need to take another step to make the php script run on html pages. If you're using Word Press, you don't need to edit the .htaccess file.
You can skip straight to the Copyright That Spans Several Years section below.
Updating the copyright year on your website may not be a legal requirement, but it's smart marketing. Showing the year is especially important if you have a site without dates on its content.
You can automatically refresh the copyright year by inserting a simple Java Script or php script (see below) into your website's html code.
The .htaccess file now affects every other file in your website.
Depending on the blogging platform you're using, you may not have access to the .htaccess file. A range of years next to your copyright symbol subtly reminds the visitor how long you've been in business or how long your website has been up. Arun Sinha is president of Access Communications, a digital marketing, content creation and web development company in Stamford, Connecticut, USA.
The copyright notice on a work establishes a claim to copyright.
The date on the notice establishes how far back the claim is made.
So why do your websites still read © last year or worse?