Facebook, the worlds largest social media site, is at it again.
There has been numerous news stories in the last week on how Facebook is once again changing their Terms of Service (TOS) for it’s users. What does it mean for photographers and anyone who uploads photos to Facebook?
First off as expressed in the new TOS that is currently awaiting approval,
For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it.
You give us permission to use your name, profile picture, content, and information in connection with commercial, sponsored, or related content (such as a brand you like) served or enhanced by us. This means, for example, that you permit a business or other entity to pay us to display your name and/or profile picture with your content or information, without any compensation to you. If you have selected a specific audience for your content or information, we will respect your choice when we use it.
If you are under the age of eighteen (18), or under any other applicable age of majority, you represent that at least one of your parents or legal guardians has also agreed to the terms of this section (and the use of your name, profile picture, content, and information) on your behalf.
Talk about taking away all of your rights!
Perhaps if one puts enough watermarks on a photo Facebook just won’t even be interested in it.
From all of the articles and comments I have read on this topic (and I am no lawyer so none of this is legal advice) it appears that any photo you take and then upload to Facebook – be it your kids birthday or soccer game or that award winning sunrise photo you took at Zion National Park – Facebook can and will use that in “commercial, sponsored, or related content…without any compensation to you.”