Am I in any legal trouble?
I'm a university student who's learning to be a web developer. I've currently worked on a student project was about an employee management system.The objective of my project was to build an app based on model view control so I pretty much had to write my own code for the server site development however I borrowed some css and html from some other website without their permission to use it for the front end design. Will I get in trouble for using a code which was copyrighted?
First, keep in mind that anyone can be sued for anything. It doesn't make it a valid case, but lawsuits can be brought for pretty much any reason.
Second, is the code actually copyrighted or the content of the site? There are only so many things that can be done, and more than one person will figure out how to do it. However, that won't stop some people from copyrighting it.
Third, if the purpose of the class was to teach you how to write your own code and you just did a copy-and-paste, even if it was just bits and pieces, you not only probably didn't learn the lesson (which could be a negative in the future, especially if you actually want to learn to be a web developer), but the end result isn't much different than copying a bunch of wiki pages and passing them off as your own essay.
I usually see how other websites are put together when it comes HTML and CSS, if you copied the HTML and CSS exactly then it's possibility of getting in legal trouble is greater than if you just copy some of the HTML/CSS with some modifications. For example if you copy www.cnn.com exactly and called it your own then yes you would be in big trouble. However, if you copied the feel of CNN then maybe not so much, for there are a lot of other news sites that have the similar look and feel to CNN. If you're just using it for college to develop backend code and no profit is going to made from it and as long as you're not using someone's LOGO then you should be OK, but it might still might be consider in bad taste by some. That's why I try to give my own flare to a website if I copy the design of website (I'm not talking about copying their code, but design). Some say copying is a form a flattery, just as long as your not stepping on their copyrights and logos (Apple logo for example is heavily protected by Apple, Inc.).
Your only in trouble if whoever is suing you has a more expensive lawyer
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