Do We Need a Copyright Symbol for Sharing?

Social Media

Found a funny cat photo online? You can post it on Pinterest, tweet it, Tumblr it, or Facebook it—but Maria Popova, the blogger behind the popular Brainpickingswebsite, says you’d better be sure to cite where you found it.
0313_tech_copyright630x420Popova spends hours each day finding links to share with her audience, and argues that curating others’ work makes her just as much a creator as the people she blogs about. And just as deserving of credit.

“Discovery of information is a form of intellectual labor,” she said to theNew York Times.
“When we don’t honor discovery, we are robbing somebody’s time and labor.” She’s proposed the

Curator’s Code” to standardize attribution on the Web, with two new characters that would work much like the © symbol used to indicate copyright  >>>>

Stands for “via”; use it to credit the source when retweeting or reposting something without altering it

Stands for a “hat tip”; place it alongside content taken from elsewhere and then altered significantly (such as adding analysis to someone else’s chart)

But surely there are more than just two ways to discover content! Consult this handy guide next time you share anything online. (And don’t forget to credit the author of this article with a ↬, thank you very much.)

The Expanded Curator’s Code

I found this in a New York Times article

Saw it in a Pitchfork album review

Chain e-mail forwarded from Uncle Seymour

Overheard in Starbucks

Saw it out my window


Ancient proverb

Today’s horoscope for Capricorns

Quote from a Tim Burton Movie

Scrawled on a bathroom stall

Hippie Dad quote

Tip left by a Foursquare Mayor

God told me

WebMD diagnosis

Lyric from Dashboard Confessional

Quote from last night’s Bachelorette


I can’t remember—and may have
totally just made this up

Daniel is graphics director for Bloomberg Businessweek.