The top 4 traps related to intellectual property on social networks

Social networks have become a stereotype of the contemporary society. The social network has become a means of promotion, an instrument of entertainment, but it can also lead us to unpleasant experiences if we are not attentive to certain aspects such as, for instance, respect for intellectual property rights.

Here, I have made an attempt to put forth examples of some of the most common pitfalls that may appear in this area leveraging the knowledge of my colleagues at the Cosmovici Intellectual Property.

  1. If I take a picture on the street and take pictures of other people, is it legal?

If this person is in a public space, we can photograph that space. This is the first confusion we usually make. Further, if we photograph a person who does his job, such as a politician speaking in public, a painter in his studio or a priest in his church, there should be no problem if we publish the photo on a social network. However, if you photograph someone while they are not exercising their public jobs or powers, for instance, when they are out shopping or when they are meeting someone, that is where the problem arises.

  1. At one point, there was a huge debate about the changes in the Instagram company terms and conditions relating to the photos on the network that could be used for advertising purposes. What can we do to defend our copyright in these photos?

You have to see Instagram’s current policy, which also takes into account the law of the country to which it applies. In general, one places, on Instagram, a photograph from which, one would like to obtain some money. When you open an account, you agree to assign all your copyright in the photos you put on the account and they have all the right to use them for non-commercial purposes, only for their promotional policy, after we have validated in writing that we agree and approve. If we observe that they begin to use the photos commercially (they appear in books, magazines, products, under a brand), we are entitled to ask them for money.

  1. Sometimes someone uploads a movie on YouTube, erases the original version of their own computer, and then finds that another person copied it and placed it on their own channel. In general, we do not know how must one react in such a situation.

The best solution would be for the copyrighted person to download the film from YouTube and file it with the National Institute of Industrial Property from where, it will receive the proof of registration that in legal terms, we name a certain date and that attests that he is the first author/producer of the material in question. Be careful if you want to protect yourself abroad, and know that the laws on copyright differ from one country to another and that the protection that may be granted in France is not necessarily recognized abroad.

  1. Always in relation to the movies placed on the social networks, it happens that one films something in a public space and the background music to that film is a popular melody for which someone else holds the copyrights. What if this person intervenes to defend his rights?

In this case, we are looking at an obvious copyright infringement. Even if we are in the presence of a derivative work, that is to say of a segment of film in the duration of which, we hear in the background, a well-known melody, this melody is not our property, and its author has the absolute right to ask us to erase the sound of the film on the segment of the film where the music in question is heard, or that we pay a certain amount of money for it. Most of the time, this is the first chosen solution.

Facebook improves the management of intellectual property with a new acquisition.

We know that Facebook uses smart algorithms and artificial intelligence for a whole bunch of reasons, and the latest news is that it will also use them in order to prevent any event of copyright infringement.

According to the latest news reports, Facebook has acquired the startup Source3 for an amount that remains confidential. Source3 is a platform that recognizes, organizes, and analyzes the registered intellectual property that can be found in user-generated content by using item recognition technology. The company targets industries such as the sports, music, entertainment and fashion industries, and has an end-to-end platform, which means it covers all stages of the process, for the online management of intellectual property and in order to facilitate relations with different brands.