These days I have been seeing much more than on one occasion whereby complaints are being administered on copyrighted materials being used on websites and then the re-published photos that have been shared on social media being removed that have been published by the companies who have exclusive rights to or to give consent for re-use. I try my best to make sure that before I hit the “Publish” button that the following is intact:
- I have the right to use the photo, whereby the photo is either an original photo where I own and retain the right to publish such. These days such use of a photo is considered “self-copy-written” because in the old days persons would mail a to-be copy-written item to have a “self-copyright” status on the item by going through the steps of this procedure. So every time I hit the publish button, I am doing such a process, so the situation is not good when I try to publish anything that is not original.
- I am actually in the photo myself, whereby I have only the right to use the photo, but do not retain any other type of right to any other use of the photo, because even if the photo is photographed in public, the photographer retains such right to copyright or give permission to re-use the photo. I can only “use” the photo on a website owned by me, because if I were to hand it to ANY one else, the new person would need to obtain consent from the owner of the photo. Anybody asking ME for permission to use such, I would have to deny them permission of such use. The only exception is whereby I were to have a clause in the affidavit or release where I guarantee that I cannot reuse a photo of myself from a promotion without consent, worded as such.
- The photo is found in a “FREE” marketplace or a “FREE” to-use library. You must make sure that the source where the photo you are trying to use is cleared and made either public-use of that you do have consent to use the photo first before hitting the publish button. You do not have any right to give any permission to anybody to re-use the photo, and have no right to any ownership or copyright of such materials, and use of such photography may not be construed as “they are using my photo” ever. Once a photo is in a “FREE” marketplace or a “FREE” to-use library, they remain there permanently, but everyone who stumbles upon such libraries must find them there by themselves or their employees. If persons are asking me where I obtained such, I have to deny them access to the whereabouts of the place of origin.
- I have to contact the owner(s) of any photo I wish to use or publish on any blog post, social media post or share, or even a comment. I DO NOT have ANY right without express, written consent from the owner to use any such photos of copy-written materials whether an original photo, or a company logo, or reproduction or such. Using such materials constitutes fraud of ownership and without the written consent, I open myself up to a whole host of torts whereby I can be sued in civil court.
Use of photography, logos and the like must be cleared up properly, or once I hit the “Publish” button, they are not easily if not impossibly unpublished. So I always make sure that I do my part to make sure that every time I hit the publish button, I wont be sorry today, tomorrow or next year. I one time wanted to conduct a giveaway of a gift card to a major coffee house, and contacted the correct department to get in touch with to get consent, and they told me that I not only did not have the right to use it, but any such use is always initiated by their promotions department, so my use was expressly denied. I do have a right however in such instance to take a photo of the gift card that I was giving away and post such, in order to conduct the giveaway and not infringe on anyone’s retained rights. Also if that is impossible, persons much take an initiative to do such giveaway if in these cases whereby an actual card as in my instance to make a photo that does not have any company logos in them.
In the giveaways that I run, I either do the above, or I am a direct sponsor of such giveaways whereby I a retain direct agency with the sponsors and sometimes receive direct compensation for the giveaway. Even so, I have direct opinions that are expressed being my own, based on direct experience, and I also endorse the company being an ambassador of such products, product lines and services. I give rights to sharing such giveaways on social medium and to re-blog such in order to help promote such product lines, but to do so from within my original posting. I do not give rights to anyone, NO MATTER WHAT THE REASON to have ownership of such, reproduce logos of such, and also do not endorse anyone else for trying to permit another giveaways of such products or services that I endorse. I also am obligations connected with such endorsements, which are great because I love working with companies to help promote their products and most of the agents that I have worked with treat me like part of the family.
I would never want someone to use my photos or logos for their own personal use. I want everyone to have a fun time while using the internet, but ownership of such rights is VERY important. So take a couple of minutes before you hit that “Publish” button to ask the question: Do I have the right to publish this item or post?