Twitpic just announced they now have an agreement with the Brithish Wenn. Wenn can now use and sell uploaded pictures of Twitpic users to third parties. Is this bad? I think it is. So I just deleted all my pictures there, and “deleted” my account and moved to Mobypicture, who currently is about the only one I can find who has a decent TOS (for now).
So what can Wenn do with your pictures? Here’s the excerpt from Twitpic’s TOS, which were changed yesterday:
You retain all ownership rights to Content uploaded to Twitpic. However, by submitting Content to Twitpic, you hereby grant Twitpic a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform the Content in connection with the Service and Twitpic’s (and its successors’ and affiliates’) business, including without limitation for promoting and redistributing part or all of the Service (and derivative works thereof) in any media formats and through any media channels.
By the way, here’s the old TOS, which were last changed February 12th, 2010.
Now, what does this all mean? A simple example says it all. Imagine, you upload a picture of yourself showing a new t-shirt. Wenn sells a database with all pics to an advertiser. Advertiser browses through the database and thinks you look good, and will be perfect for a page sized ad in a porn magazine. There’s nothing you can do about it.
Another example. You shoot a picture of something special, Wenn sells that picture for a lot of money to all news station’s around the world, after which it’s used everywhere on paper and TV. Normally you have copyright, and you should get paid for your copyright. Now you get nothing.
Of course a lot of people will say; “Well, don’t upload pictures to the net then if you don’t want them to be publicly used”. That’s my opinion too. I’m always careful about what I upload so it doesn’t show sensitive information, however what Twitpic is now doing is something completely different, and in my opinion everyone should abandon the service, and move to a service who doesn’t do this stuff. Moving to yFrog? Don’t:
Any media that you submit to Imageshack may be redistributed throughout the Imageshack network of sites, the internet, and other media channels, which may include third-party advertisers.
Mobypicture located in Amsterdam then? Looks safe (for now):
All rights of uploaded content by our users remain the property of our users and those rights can in no means be sold or used in a commercial way by Mobypicture or affiliated third party partners without consent from the user.
But they have (of course) the right to update it at anytime, and they say this about it:
See the bold part? It’s interesting. It means that every image you upload now is safe, because it was uploaded under the current TOS.
Your content is yours
Is this something new? No it isn’t. Just look at Facebook’s TOS:
You own all of the content and information you post on Facebook, and you can control how it is shared through your privacy and application settings. In addition:
- 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.
- When you delete IP content, it is deleted in a manner similar to emptying the recycle bin on a computer. However, you understand that removed content may persist in backup copies for a reasonable period of time (but will not be available to others).
See? It’s exactly the same thing. So it kinda annoys me so many people are uploading for example their kids pictures. Don’t be surprised if your kid suddenly shows up on a massive advertising campaign for diapers and you won’t be a able to get your kid removed from it, or see a penny for it.
This is what happens if you don’t read Terms of Service 😉