Use Content From Other Websites – Legally

snipsEver since we had to write our first papers in high school, proper attribution has always been a royal pain in the butt. Whether it was getting scolded for improper footnote format or screwing up a bibliography, giving other people credit for their work – and not claiming it as your own – is not as easy as it sounds. Or is it?

With bloggers often walking that fine gray line of attribution, we present for your approval, sni.ps, a bookmarklet that allows you to capture content, use it on your blog and give credit to the original source.

Here’s an example using an image that appears on the CNN.com homepage.

CNN.com

The image or text then becomes shaded to let you know you have “snipped” it correctly.

Here’s an in-depth look at the process:

1. Install

Simply drag this Snip it! button up to your bookmarks toolbar. It’s that easy. Now you’re ready to start snipping – you just have to find some content.

2. Capture

Each time you find content you want to capture for re-use, click on the sni.ps toolbar icon to open the capture zone. You’ll see the sni.ps Capture Zone mast head at the top of the page. Now just highlight the content you want – text, an image, video or a flash object – and click the snip button. A handy sni.ps highlight frame will appear once you have successfully snipped the content.

You can capture more content from this page, or continue browsing to find more.

We will store content for this session in a temporary session folder. But if you want to keep your sni.ps for re-use later on, you should sign up and create a personal folder. We’ll keep all your sni.ps handy for whenever you need them.

3. Annotate

You can title, tag and make notes to each sni.ps by clicking on the (i) icon. This is a great way to organize your sni.ps.

4. Embed

You can embed the content right away by clicking on the embed tab as soon as you capture it. Just copy and past the code.

If you signed up and decided to save content for later, you can keep browsing. You’re your ready to re-use the content, you can access your sni.ps folder anytime by logging in.

Simply select the content you want to embed to highlight it. You’ll see the content and its more detailed information over on the right. Click the embed button, and then copy the code for re-use. The content will be automatically attributed to its original source.