preventing others from selsecing (copying) text on a web page?

Discussion in 'HTML' started by Big McLargehuge, May 30, 2006.

  1. I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    therefore copy it. I can't seem to identify how this is done by
    looking at the source code (i'm somewhat familiar with HTML but no
    expert) and I'd love to be able to do this as it prevents casual
    copying.

    Does anyone know?
    thanks.
     
    Big McLargehuge, May 30, 2006
    #1
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  2. On Tue, 30 May 2006 11:45:55 -0400, Big McLargehuge
    <> mumbled something like:

    >I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    >code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    >therefore copy it. I can't seem to identify how this is done by
    >looking at the source code (i'm somewhat familiar with HTML but no
    >expert) and I'd love to be able to do this as it prevents casual
    >copying.
    >
    >Does anyone know?
    >thanks.



    um... that word in the subject should be 'selecting.' I'm embarrassed
    that one slipped by me.
     
    Big McLargehuge, May 30, 2006
    #2
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  3. Big McLargehuge wrote:
    > I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    > code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    > therefore copy it.


    Easily bypassable and not worth bothering with. If you want to protect
    your copyright, use legal means, technological solutions don't work.
     
    David Dorward, May 30, 2006
    #3
  4. On 30 May 2006 08:52:08 -0700, "David Dorward" <>
    mumbled something like:

    >Big McLargehuge wrote:
    >> I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    >> code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    >> therefore copy it.

    >
    >Easily bypassable and not worth bothering with. If you want to protect
    >your copyright, use legal means, technological solutions don't work.


    That's why I said it was only intended to prevent casual copying. I
    understand your point, and I agree this is not the solution for the
    prevention of copyright infringement, but I was hoping to implement
    this anyway.

    Thanks.
     
    Big McLargehuge, May 30, 2006
    #4
  5. Big McLargehuge

    Frank Olieu Guest

    _Big McLargehuge_ skrev | wrote | écrivit (30-05-2006 18:38):

    > That's why I said it was only intended to prevent casual copying.


    Most casual users know at least about the 'display source code' thing to be
    found in most browsers...

    > ... but I was hoping to implement this anyway.


    Why? It's usually regarded as exposing the author's cluelessness...

    --
    Venlig hilsen | Kind regards | Cordialement
    Frank
     
    Frank Olieu, May 30, 2006
    #5
  6. On Tue, 30 May 2006 18:54:10 +0200, Frank Olieu <> mumbled
    something like:

    >_Big McLargehuge_ skrev | wrote | écrivit (30-05-2006 18:38):
    >
    >> That's why I said it was only intended to prevent casual copying.

    >
    >Most casual users know at least about the 'display source code' thing to be
    >found in most browsers...
    >
    >> ... but I was hoping to implement this anyway.

    >
    >Why? It's usually regarded as exposing the author's cluelessness...


    *MROWR*

    Why the hostile response? I was just looking for a question answered,
    if you don't know or don't want to tell me, how about simply not
    responding instead of taking out whatever frustrations you may have on
    an innocent bystander? (Oh wait... I forgot, this *is* the Usenet...
    Silly me)

    Is there anyone out there who actually knows and would care to tell
    me. I'm curious about how to do this, if nothing else.

    Thanks.
     
    Big McLargehuge, May 30, 2006
    #6
  7. "Big McLargehuge" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    > code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    > therefore copy it. I can't seem to identify how this is done by
    > looking at the source code (i'm somewhat familiar with HTML but no
    > expert) and I'd love to be able to do this as it prevents casual
    > copying.


    I've not seen this particular trick but it's probably a javascript thing.
    Google on a phrase such as "javascript prevent copying" and check out the
    responses.

    You could convert the text to an image -- that introduces other issues
    though. Possibly set up your page as a Flash file?

    Whatever route you take, I think it would be worth far more trouble than it
    is worth and there would still be workarounds if someone wanted to get your
    content.

    M
     
    Michael Laplante, May 30, 2006
    #7
  8. Big McLargehuge wrote:

    > On Tue, 30 May 2006 18:54:10 +0200, Frank Olieu <> mumbled
    > something like:
    >
    >>_Big McLargehuge_ skrev | wrote | écrivit (30-05-2006 18:38):
    >>
    >>> That's why I said it was only intended to prevent casual copying.

    >>
    >>Most casual users know at least about the 'display source code' thing to be
    >>found in most browsers...
    >>
    >>> ... but I was hoping to implement this anyway.

    >>
    >>Why? It's usually regarded as exposing the author's cluelessness...

    >
    > *MROWR*


    Heh!

    > Why the hostile response? I was just looking for a question answered,


    Hostile? Not at all. However, you asked a question that is .. well ..
    mostly silly.

    > if you don't know or don't want to tell me, how about simply not
    > responding instead of taking out whatever frustrations you may have on
    > an innocent bystander? (Oh wait... I forgot, this *is* the Usenet...
    > Silly me)


    Yep, this is Usenet, where a succinct answer may be the best one.

    > Is there anyone out there who actually knows and would care to tell
    > me. I'm curious about how to do this, if nothing else.


    Position a large <div> on top of the text, and fill it with a
    transparent image. Then, the clueless won't be able to swipe/copy the
    text. Though, anyone with a modicum of clue will find other ways.

    As mentioned, once the visitor finds your attempt, it would be revealed
    that his/her level cluefulness is somewhat higher than .. um ..

    Generally, most all sites' attempts to hide content is inversely
    proportional to the actual worth of said content. :-0

    The above method is *slightly* more clueful than those JavaScript
    scripts that say: "Alert: YOU CAN'T COPY MY IMAGES!! NYAH NYAH NYAH!"

    --
    -bts
    -Warning: I brake for lawn deer
     
    Beauregard T. Shagnasty, May 30, 2006
    #8
  9. Big McLargehuge

    Frank Olieu Guest

    _Beauregard T. Shagnasty_ skrev | wrote | écrivit (30-05-2006 20:50):

    > Position a large <div> on top of the text, and fill it with a
    > transparent image. Then, the clueless won't be able to swipe/copy the
    > text...


    Speaking of that... A real-life case:
    My sister-in-law (a casual user if ever!) once performed the following, after
    she ran into a 'protected' site:
    - print the page
    - scan the sheet
    - perform OCR...
    (on an all-in-one printer, with most things automated... but still!)

    You'd have to block for print (in any way you can figure out) to circumvent
    this... But then, she could still make a screen dump and OCR it...

    Obviously, casual users aren't what they were anymore. And when it comes to it,
    the safest is probably /not/ publishing your site in the first place :)

    Or consider using a more flexible licence like Creative Commons...?

    --
    Venlig hilsen | Kind regards | Cordialement
    Frank
     
    Frank Olieu, May 30, 2006
    #9
  10. Big McLargehuge

    Auggie Guest

    "Big McLargehuge" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    > code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    > therefore copy it. I can't seem to identify how this is done by
    > looking at the source code (i'm somewhat familiar with HTML but no
    > expert) and I'd love to be able to do this as it prevents casual
    > copying.


    What you want to Google for is:

    ONSELECTSTART
    and
    ONCONTEXTMENU

    Both are javascript functions that can aid in preventing people from copying
    text and images from your website...

    HOWEVER:
    The reason there are some that are up in arms about this (as you've seen in
    replies to your post) is because that really it is going to be a waste of
    time in the end and they are trying to get that point across to you and
    others who ask this same question (this question comes up pretty regularly)

    Using such methods will prevent the "casual" user from copying your text or
    images... and you have to ask yourself: What harm is there going to be to
    you if some Average Joe User copies a couple of paragraphs or downloads a
    picture from your website?

    When you think about the time involved in implementing and testing such a
    method, the answer is going to be: "very little to no harm at all"

    The ones you want to prevent from copying your text or images are going to
    be other web designers or graphic designers... and the problem there is that
    they will be able to easily bypass anything you put up - by either turning
    off javascsript, viewing the cache folder, viewing the source of the web
    page or even just taking a screenshot of the page.

    So in the end no matter what you do to prevent people from copying text or
    images off your site - somebody will be able to get what they want, even if
    it means just retyping out what you have on your page.

    And a large potential problem here is that if your scripting its not correct
    and has been thoroughly tested you run the risk that anything you implement
    could screw up in somebody's browser... and then you have the problem that
    the average user you want to view your pages might not be able to... and the
    guys who want to copy your page are free to do so.
     
    Auggie, May 30, 2006
    #10
  11. Auggie wrote:
    > "Big McLargehuge" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> I've seen web pages where the text is still embedded in the source
    >> code, however when viewing the webpage you cannot select the text, and
    >> therefore copy it. I can't seem to identify how this is done by
    >> looking at the source code (i'm somewhat familiar with HTML but no
    >> expert) and I'd love to be able to do this as it prevents casual
    >> copying.

    >
    > What you want to Google for is:
    >
    > ONSELECTSTART
    > and
    > ONCONTEXTMENU
    >


    Not in my browser!

    --
    Take care,

    Jonathan
    -------------------
    LITTLE WORKS STUDIO
    http://www.LittleWorksStudio.com
     
    Jonathan N. Little, May 30, 2006
    #11
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