June 18, 2013

"Photographer sues BuzzFeed for $3.6M over viral sharing model."

"The copyright issues poses a threat to BuzzFeed and similar websites, including Upworthy and For the Win, which have an editorial model based on finding content — especially images — that readers are likely to share on social media."
Last year, BuzzFeed founder Jonah Peretti explained to the Atlantic that the site pays to license images from companies like Reuters and Getty, but that it also pulls from amateur sites like Tumblr and Flickr. In these cases, the provenance of the images can be unclear — in some cases, the photographer has made them available for public use while other times the author is simply unknown.

15 comments:

ed said...

This can also be called the "Steal until they squeal" profit model.

rhhardin said...

I have 30,000 Doberman pictures you can use free.

Palladian said...

Rent seeking!

cold pizza said...

Did he get a receipt? Did he GET A RECEIPT?! -CP

Astro said...

What's to prevent someone from deliberately uploading a series of crazy photos to Tumblr or Flickr, then sitting back for weeks while BuzzFeed shares the photos. Then once the photos have circulated for a while, suing BuzzFeed for all those unauthorized shares?

Like a 'submarine patent'.

Bruce Hayden said...

Astro - if you actually were the one uploading the photos, then that would probably considered a license to distribute the photos, given the nature of the site. So, you really need someone without any ownership or license doing the uploading in order to get your plan to work.

And, submarine patents are a bit different - mostly they are writing claims to read on technology that already exists. Classic were those of Jerome Lemelson, who filed several patent applications in the mid to late 1950s, and then had patents issuing from then up to 40 years later claiming technologies that were decades in the future when the priority applications were filed. Now days, we have some protection from submarine patents in the change for term from 17 years from issue to 20 years from priority date, plus the Written Description requirement of 35 USC 112(a).

Lem said...

I wonder if that works with words.

Lem said...

What if you said something to someone and they use it and make money off of it... a lot of money off of it.

Shouldn't the 'originator' of those words be compensated?

Henry said...

Suitably, the story about the theft of a soccer image is illustrated with a picture of an ugly cat.

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Henry said...

I don't know much about Tumblr, but Flickr has a built-in licensing model. Unless Eiselein is misrepresenting the license he applied to his pictures it will pretty impossible for Buzzfeed to pretend they just didn't know.

jr565 said...

ed wrote:
This can also be called the "Steal until they squeal" profit model.

This is also the free/open internet model. Your pictures are our pictures. We will get rich off of your content without paying you for it.

Kylos said...

Lawsuits I hope will succeed.

Seriously, I don't understand why a corporation should be allowed to ignore the clear copyright notice accompanying the images. I'm all for mashups, but why is it so difficult to take a few minutes to verify or seek permission to use another's work?

jr565 said...

Kylos wrote:
Seriously, I don't understand why a corporation should be allowed to ignore the clear copyright notice accompanying the images. I'm all for mashups, but why is it so difficult to take a few minutes to verify or seek permission to use another's work?


Clearly, You haven't been on the internet a lot lately. That's the "business" model of many interent companies. That's exactly how file sharing companies get their files and their money.

Crunchy Frog said...

I have a website on blogger that I post my song lyrics to specifically for copyright purposes. Once published, they are free for anyone to read and enjoy, but they are still mine.

Anyone wanting to use them to make money had better give me my cut.