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Can disabling the right click affect Google ranking?

 10:05 pm on Jul 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

I registered my site copy with the U.S. copyright office and I am considering to disable the right click on my site, so when someone right click they will see a warning message with text that the content of my site is registered and protected by the U.S. copyright office.

I know if they want to copy the text they will still figure it out but I just want to let them know that my content is protected.

Is it a good idea to do that and to disable the right click? also can that affect my organic search placement on Google?



 1:29 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

Does disabling right click make sense for your visitors with however you plan to use it? If it does, who cares what Google thinks.

The focus on Google has shifted into religion status for a little too long, it needs to move back to the visitors imo.


 1:42 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

I never heard of any ranking problems because of disabling the right click. But I sure have heard of ticked off visitors. In fact, when I run into this approach, I am one of them.

The issue is that, depending on the browser and whatever tools the user may have installed, a right click enables a whole host of useful functionality - functionality that has nothing to do with protecting or violating your copyright. Takeaway that functionality and you, the web publisher, may be seen as heavy handed and that can upset an otherwise happy visitor. And since the purposeful thief has so many other ways to get at your text anyway, disabling right click doesn't make sense to me.

If you want to inform visitors about the copyright, all you need to do is put a copyright notice on the page. And you are still protected even if you don't do that.

[edited by: tedster at 3:39 am (utc) on Jul 9, 2010]


 2:54 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

Thank you for the helpful tip!


 3:38 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

Ripping off images is a huge problem for people who create original artwork. I was recently contacted by a painter who found that ALL her original work was posted on another website, under another name, with the outrageous notice to contact the thief to order prints. I helped her add an embedded copyright to every image on her own site, plus of course we put a notice on every page. Even so, she's extremely upset to think that some moron is stealing her artwork, with no regard to the law or, heaven help us, common decency.

So while I agree with the sentiments expressed here, I too clearly see the other side of the story and thoroughly understand the temptation to make it as difficult as possible.

Having said that, anyone who knows what they are doing can easily do a screenrip of any image, right click disabled or not, so there's no surefire solution. As tedster said, at the very least make it abundantly clear that all work is copyrighted, and word it as strongly as necessary ("...violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law"). The fact is, putting original content on the internet where anyone can see it is inherently risky, so all you can do is do the best you can to protect it. Beyond that, the ugly truth is, it's up for grabs.

ps. One more thing to consider is to set up your hosting account to forbid hotlinking to your images -- check in your control panel to see if that can be activated easily.



 7:49 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

If you want to inform visitors about the copyright, all you need to do is put a copyright notice on the page. And you are still protected even if you don't do that.

The OP did make the point that he/she knew that a disabled right click can easily be circumvented and I can certainly understand why people do this. I have tracts of text stolen from my websites regularly. I have to spend money on Copyscape monitoring of these sites. When they are copied I have to spend my time taking action against the infringers.

Actually I think that people become blind to copyright notices on websites. I mean they are almost always there, aren't they? Disabling the right click is a more "in your face" way of bringing it to the attention of potential infringers.

I also appreciate Tedster's point that it limits functionality and that's why I don't do it. It's just a pity that there is no way to display a copyright warning pop up in a corner of the screen when someone does this while continuing to allow the functionality.

Any programmers want a good idea? :)


 8:27 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

if you turn right-click off you're also turning off 'bookmark this page' and 'email this link', which a lot of people might use.

you can use javascript to prevent text-highlighting. so they won't be able to select any words to copy. maybe that would serve you better. you can also back it up with CSS (in mozilla and safari), so it would work even if they turned off javascript. just google "prevent text highlighting css".

it would still annoy your visitors, but maybe not quite so much.

Robert Charlton

 8:55 am on Jul 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

There's a trick that I vaguely remember, but don't have the resource at hand, where you overlay your image with a transparent .gif (that's positioned in a div and resized to sit over your image). This will frustrate the right-clickers, as they'll get only the transparent .gif.

But, screen capture can still get around that and capture the image.

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