Is it professionally ethical to advertise the name of the web developer/web development company on a client's web site when the developer has designed the site? I ask because I built a web site for a local non-profit and shared it with a friend. My friend said that my name should be on it and that she's seen sites with the developer's/development company's name credited on them ("Site designed by..."). So, is this right? Can I plaster my company's name on a client's site so that I get free publicity? Thanks in advance for the response.
That should be negotiated between you and the owner of the site, and will surely depends on the deal between the two of you? It will be unethical, imho to just do it without their agreement. Sometimes, when I charge a special rate or even when I build a site free of charge, I do it with my name in the footer area, but the clients knew this from the beginning and agreed to it beforehand.
In your case, just get their permission and if agreed, you do it.
Putting the developer/designer's details and links on the footer of a website is not 'advertising', and is common practice. However, as Kraai mentioned, this should always be agreed with the customer beforehand, which is only polite at the very least.
I know it is solved but in future you should make clients aware that there will be a link to your website in the footer of the website. All my websites have Copyright 2011 (link)Joebhoy Designs Group(link) or Design by - (link)Joebhoy Designs Group(link) All Rights Reserved.
You have a right to put the link there because after all you own the copyright of the design not the client.