Reminder: Change Copyright Year to 2022

If you don’t want to update manually you can write

© <script>document.write(new Date().getFullYear())</script>

I found this working on most servers


That is Javascript and has nothing to do with the server, but requires the user to have JavaScript enabled on their browser. That shouldn’t be an issue for over 99% of users.

Everyone should remember that there are no “Copyright Police” at least not here in the U.S., so any protection you have is only as good as you will take it in civil actions. So unless you intend to hire a lawyer to take action against someone who has stolen your content, placing the Copyright on the page is pretty much just for show.

If you think sometime, you want to take action, then they base Copyright on who owned it first. So by placing the current year only on a copyright statement and not the first year you published, that content could weaken your claim.
Btw: we have covered a lot of this in previous posts.


Perhaps if Realmac added a %current_year% variable, this could be handled automatically?

@realmac Something for RW9?


that would be perfect! …not only for of the “copyright year”…also quite useful for other use cases


Keep in mind that these types of template variables are only evaluated when the site is published. You’d still need to publish all pages where this is used for it to update them.

You can add this PHP / JS code snip into the General settings > Footer

Copyright © <?php $copyYear = 1998; $curYear = date('Y'); echo $copyYear . (($copyYear != $curYear) ? '-' . $curYear : ''); ?> Your name

You’ll never need to worry about this again.


This only work if all pages are PHP pages.

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I’ve held copyrights for almost 40 years now, both for written work (including software) and for photographs. There is a massive amount of incorrect information on copyright floating around on “the font of all wisdom” and some of it is here.

Read it for yourself: Circulars | U.S. Copyright Office

Circular 01 covers the basics.

This thread is based on a mistaken premise: that a website can be copyrighted. Here’s what the copyright office says about that: “The Copyright Act does not explicitly recognize websites as a type of copyrightable subject matter. However, you may be able to register a website or a specific web page if it satisfies certain statutory requirements.” (

Multiyear designations (copyright 2001-2004) are for the years that the original work was edited, or when a copyright has been purchased and transferred to a new owner.

The copyright notice has a very specific form, listed in Circular 01. The reply that copyright is granted once a work is in tangible form is correct, but the purpose of registering the copyright is in case the item is used illegally. You will get absolutely nowhere in court if you did not register your copyright.

It is NOT correct to change the date of a copyright just because the year rolls over. forbesrodney is entirely correct.

Copyright is not remotely simple or easy to understand. If it were, there would not be over a hundred circulars on it.


Thank you, Michael :slight_smile:
… and a question as I’m a non-coder:

Where in RW do I have to insert the line of code you submitted?

Thanks and a Happy New Year to all!

I’m with the group that updates every year simply to assure my visitors that the site is maintained and updated.

By the way, here in the USA, nine of the top ten Fortune 500 update their copyright:

  • 5 use only the current year
  • 4 use a range of years
  • 1 doesn’t have anything at all in their footer- it’s 100% totally blank. Not even a link to their privacy statement. Seriously:
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It is Google!!! hehe

There is also the macro in RW for last published date too, as an alternative to using copyright as an indication of updates.

Mic Drop…


I’ve worked in publishing for about 45 years. It is certainly true that US copyright law isn’t easy to understand. The US is, and has been for a very long time, out of step with just about everyone else. It refused to sign the Berne Convention for over a hundred years. I think I’m right in saying that the US only allowed foreign works to receive copyright protection in 1891. That’s why Dickens had to tour the US to make any money from his US sales.

In the UK, not only is there no advantage to registering copyright, there is no way to do so. The presence or absence of a copyright notice is extremely unlikely to be relevant in a court case in the UK, but it could tip the balance if there were a lack of other evidence. The date in a copyright notice is largely irrelevant since the copyright term is determined by the date of the author’s death.

There is no doubt that any original text or illustrations in a web page are protected by copyright in the UK.

It’s a great Stack to be able to easily add dates to your page, even just to display today’s date for people, so it’s very useful for a whole range of things, not just copyright messages, and can save non-programmers time in getting dynamic date and time content on their page.

It is true that in the UK you don’t have to register copyright, it’s automatic if your creation is original, but it’s always worth reminding people when it was originated and that you are aware of it being an original work, as viewers all over the world can see your website and content, and may not be aware, and it also creates a distinction between sites which only have public domain content and information, or non copyrighted information such as facts or news.

So, I think it’s still worth adding to a site as a reminder to all viewers if you have original content, who owns it, and demonstrates that you care if someone else steals it.

In a UK court case it can be helpful as it removes the possibility of someone claiming they didn’t know it was copyrighted. All such information and notices all help for your cause.



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I used to put the code in the Footer Field in the General Settings Section of Rapid Weaver.

And you could extend to a range of course:

© 2011 - <script>document.write(new Date().getFullYear())</script> by Vess
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Thank you again, Michael, for your comprehensive explanation! Have a nice day!

Using document.write within your HTML is frowned upon. The reason is that it’s a render blocking function. It’s better to use the methods from my post above. If you don’t own my stacks, I even provide a small snippet to accomplish the same for copyright dates. This is non-render blocking.

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