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Intellectual Property Rights

Facebook’s Photo Fiasco: Protecting Your Personal Images

by · September 10, 2013

Once again, Facebook has proposed changes to its governing documents, stating the social network’s right to incorporate users’ images into advertising. [Check out the redlined versions of the “Data Use Policy” and “Rights and Responsibilities” for details on the proposed changes.] Understandably, site users became upset and privacy groups raised a ruckus, prompting Facebook’s top brass to put the pending changes on hold (for now).

The basics of intellectual property haven’t changed: you still own copyright in your photos. Moreover, you already gave Facebook “a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post,” even prior to the controversial changes being proposed.

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Enjoying Pleasure Island?

by · January 2, 2013

After the recent kerfuffle over Instagram’s terms of service, the powers that be went back to the drawing board and, in the meantime, reinstituted their previous terms about advertising that had not raised as many eyebrows.

Much like Pleasure Island in “Pinocchio,” Instagram is packed with fun features, all for free, and few who enjoy playtime give much thought to what’s in it for the purveyors of pleasure.

In the (unlikely) event that you aren’t familiar with the changes Instagram made, the salient points are covered here. The one that sparked the most concern was the provision allowing Instagram to use user content in advertising without compensating (or even notifying) the user. Instagram has since clarified that it does not claim ownership in user content. Currently, the terms read:

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