The LII considers legality in the framework of copyrights, trademarks, and intellectual property law. As Schneider writes: "The author of a legitimate web site will ensure that she is legally entitled to publish the content on her site, working within copyright and fair use guidelines."
She also considers the topic of fair-use, which is a legal defence that argues that the reproduction of a work is legitimate because of extenuating circumstances. Schneider cites critiquing a work as an example of this, and encourages readers to check out a website busting 10 popular copyright myths. Schneider recommends avoiding reproducing something that would mean using the fair-use argument in court. It's a hassle and highly subjective, so why bother? It only takes a moment more to attribute something properly.
SEOs can use Creative Commons copyright licenses to indicate to readers that their site is operating within a legitimate legal framework. Placing the CC marker in an easily visible place would reinforce arguments of due diligence in court, and so locations above the fold (i.e. the portion of a website immediately visible upon loading with no scrolling) might be considered. It might even reassure someone providing a link that their own external link is going to a quality website.
Additionally, it's an easy way of showing that you're credible and trustworthy, which is what this all comes down to. For example, Marketing Sherpa (another great newsletter that each of you should subscribe to) recently published the results of a marketing experiment by Petco.com showing that prominent display of a security certificate boosted sales. It is therefore likely that prominently displaying a badge that reflects trustworthiness on you would have similar effects.
There are a few other questions Schneider posts afterwards that hint at other trustworthiness points. I'm not going to quote them, though, because I want you to absolutely go and check out the Google Librarian Center and sign up for the Google Librarian Center's Newsletter right now.
Here are a few quick steps to immediately implement what has been discussed in this article.
1. SEOs will have noticed that sloppy code has been mentioned a few times. Check that your code is valid. This is known in technical jargon as "validating" code. Try W3C’s free html validator: W3 Validator. 2. Go and edit your template file. Make sure your site's content is available and trustworthy, as determined by the criteria of credibility, authorship, quality of external links and legality. Refer back to each section of this article as necessary. 3. Contact your professional association and get their website to link to yours. 4. If it does not already exist, create an About page. 5. Join a site review forum community like www.Sitepoint.com to get outside opinions on your availability, credibility, authorship, external links and legality. 6. Finally, and probably most importantly (again something for those of you patient and perseverent enough to read through to the end), go submit your site to the Librarians' Internet Index (the link is on the upper right). Something tells me that Google respects librarians.