It’s 2013, Time To Update Your Blog’s Copyright Notice

Happy New Year everyone! Welcome to 2013. As a blogger, the first thing you should do in the new year is to update your blog’s copyright notice to say 2013. If your blog doesn’t have a copyright notice, you should add one right away. Many bloggers may consider this a relatively minor issue but from a professional and branding standpoint, making sure your blog has a copyright notice with the correct information is very important.

For most bloggers, this is a simple task of logging into the WordPress admin panel and editing the footer.php file in the themes editor. Find the part that says Copyright 2012 and change it to say Copyright 2013. Because this is done only once a year, many bloggers will forget to update the copyright notice until someone points it out to them.

How To Auto Update The Copyright Notice

Instead of manually updating the copyright notice once a year, there is a simple way to make WordPress do it automatically. Start by Logging into your WordPress themes editor and open the file that holds your copyright information. For most WordPress themes, this will be the footer.php file. Keep in mind that you can only edit a file from the WordPress editor if the file permission is set to writable. If the file is not writable, you will have to FTP in to change the permission, or update the file using FTP.

Find the part with the copyright notice and replace it with the following.

Copyright &copy; <?php echo date(‘Y’); ?> Blog Name

Instead of hard coding 2013 into the copyright notice, you replace it with <?php echo date(‘Y’); ?>, which will automatically pull in the year from your web server calendar (the “&copy;” creates the copyright C logo). This only works if your server is set to the correct year. If it’s not, you’ll have to contact your web host and get them to adjust the date. In my case, I like to do my copyright from the year the blog started. The code will look like this.

Copyright &copy; 2005 – <?php echo date(‘Y’); ?> John Chow, Inc.

Now, instead of trying to remember to update the copyright notice at the beginning of a new year, the blog will do it for you automatically. That is, as long as the clock on the server is correct. 🙂

23 thoughts on “It’s 2013, Time To Update Your Blog’s Copyright Notice”

  1. sapna says:

    HI John

    That’s a great lesson for the non-programmers.



  2. Thank you very much Mr. John for this information!

  3. Great post and so TRUE…! I am not sure why some of the themes don’t have the code set up right so that it updates by default. We are in the process of getting going in 2013 but will keep this tip in mind so we don’t forget next year.

    Happy New Year to every one…!



  4. Hi John,

    Thanks for reminding me to update the copyright message, I almost forgot about it.

  5. Raplus says:

    Hey John,

    Thanks for reminding it. My blog was auto updated. 🙂

  6. Ryan McLean says:

    What is the copyright for? So people can’t steal my content?

    What happens if I leave it at 2012?

    1. Brian says:

      I am just thinking it is for branding. You want to look professional and like you are up to date that is all!

      Good luck in 2013. I am going to work hard for a good year as well!

  7. Ferb says:

    Hi John, you keep this very consistent. I remember you said this last year and love to see this again to remind others.

    Thanks – Ferb

  8. Sanji says:

    I think this is already included on every wp themes today, since this is part of WP standard coding practices. Nevertheless, thanks for reminding others!

  9. Samuel says:

    Happy New Year John!

    Yeah, we all need to make sure to update our dates 🙂

  10. ZK says:

    I would have never remembered to do this …minor cange but very important and critical for the blog.

  11. Babanature says:

    A very nice information and very useful for bloggers with less programming skills. nice

  12. Abhik says:

    Well, me too using the same piece of code in my blog. No need to manually update the copyright notice every year.

  13. faisal says:

    You post this every year John, don’t you ;p

  14. Elliot young says:

    Thanks and Thanks John…..I am on ma way now to do it on ma site
    wow what a reminder!

  15. Eileen says:

    Thanks John!

  16. Mike Norris says:

    John thanks for this great information. It’s very timely. I need to get this done.

  17. Lewis Saka says:

    thanks for the reminder not many other famous bloggers do this, but it is an important thing to note

  18. Tiffany Dow says:

    lol well I went to follow your tip and realized my mentor had set this up for me already a long time ago – nice share though!

  19. Tim Miller says:

    Thanks for the tip John,

    I actually always forgot to update the year of my blog’s copyright notice. But now i realize that this is really important to tell the people regarding the ownership of our contents.

  20. Thank you. Good and easy tutorial.

  21. Maurice says:

    Good post John and Happy New Year!

  22. divyesh says:


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