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Facebook and stock photos.
Legal implications.

 11:16 am on Jul 7, 2011 (gmt 0)

I decided to finally created a facebook page for my online shop. So I created my account and wanted to add a few pictures and graphics but immediatly stumbled upon some legal hurdles.

When I upload pictures to facebook I have to give them a license for worldwide usage. It says:

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").

However the terms and conditions of the stock photo services I use do not allow sub licenses.

Usually there is a paragraph like this:
The Licensee may not loan, rent, sell, sub-license, lease, or otherwise transfer the right to use any image to any other person or entity.

So it seems it is not possible to use any stock photos on facebook or any graphics that contain stock photos.

Anybody know a stock photo service that has already addressed this issue?



 11:24 am on Jul 7, 2011 (gmt 0)

The only way to address it is not to upload those photos to FB. I've come across professional photographers bemoaning their terms before. I doubt you'll find a service that allows FB upload, it's just not in their interests to allow it.


 2:02 pm on Jul 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

It's worse than that. You omitted the rest of that clause, the bit that goes like this:

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.

So share the content and you basically give it away / lose control over the license.

It's nuts. You'd be stupid to upload any photos of any potential value to FB, and stock managers etc would be stupid to allow it.


 5:34 pm on Jul 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

It's nuts. You'd be stupid to upload any photos of any potential value to FB, and stock managers etc would be stupid to allow it.

Nevertheless I see business decorating their facebook pages with photos all over facebook. So I am wondering where they get them. Or are they ignorant? The problem: Even if I buy exclusive rights to a photo I end up spending a lot of money on pictures and giving up my rights on them for free...

The more I get involved with facebook the more it seems to me like facebook is a billion dollar company build on a foundation of broken laws and broken contracts.


 9:44 am on Jul 15, 2011 (gmt 0)

Then what is the best move for this problem?

Sometimes rules of Facebook doesn't adhere with other sites. Perhaps you need to report this one to the management and with for the proper action.


 1:20 pm on Jul 15, 2011 (gmt 0)

There is no best move. If content licensors (manufacturers / distributors) want their stuff promoted on Facebook, they will need to add exceptions to their licenses, or perhaps create Facebook specific content in a sort of tier system so they can still maintain maximum legal control over the valuable stuff, and you will have to convince them to do one or t'other.

Otherwise take your own photos and use them instead. I would use separate content on valuable assets like websites and brochures, so as above you are not giving away rights to Facebook and possibly compromising the future integrity of that material.

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