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How can you protect a community site for getting sued

over copyrighted photos or what ever is on the site



8:57 pm on Oct 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member zeus is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Im just currious here, it can not be possible to watch every image/video that is uploaded and who knows if its copyrighted, its impossible to see if its copyrighted or not, how can a site protect it serf from getting sued or at least get bad email complaines.

I these days where a new community pops up every where with A LOT of content uploaded.

Is there a text in therms that would protect them?


9:42 am on Oct 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Be sure that there's clear advice on the upload page that people MUST NOT upload pics they do not own the rights for, and that the member is responsible for any pics they upload. Check the wording on major upload sites, get legal advice if needs be.

Do not, ever, allow non-members to use pic upload.

Then, ALWAYS act when there's obvious abuse - eg any Disney pic - so you can demonstrate good faith.

But the key is not 24/7 monitoring and checking every pic, the key is acting immediately if there's a complaint, by removing the pic first, and ask questions after.

While they could still sue, their chances of winning serious money from someone who has 'done the right thing' are remote, you can sue the uploader in turn, and so your risk is (I reckon) pretty small.

If you ever get any trouble at all, re-evaluate the risk after the dust has settled on the basis of how it went; one case may appear as evidence in another.

NOTE: I'm not a lawyer, etc., etc.

Acting in Good Faith is the Key


11:49 pm on Nov 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

You can make your defense pretty much impenetrable by following the provisions of the DMCA Safe Harbor act.

[edited by: KGZotU at 11:58 pm (utc) on Nov. 11, 2007]


2:43 am on Nov 12, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

And of course, I'm not a lawyer either. That is the purpose of the Safe Harbor Act, however.


1:34 pm on Nov 14, 2007 (gmt 0)

Make it mandatory to have proof when one wants to complain


12:45 am on Nov 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator rogerd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

The problem isn't false complaints, but rather legitimate complaints from real copyright owners. Providing good reporting tools, responding swiftly to complaints, and communicating well will take care of 99% of the instances. Those steps in and of themselves, though, won't eliminate legal responsibilities. And, even if you are 100% right from a legal standpoint, you can still get sued. You may prevail only after significant time and legal expense.

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