Friday, July 13, 2007

About Copyright, ownership and privacy

Who steals from whom? If you post a screen cap, videos or photos taken from the internet, does it make them yours? If you use a transcript or a rundown from Anderson Cooper 360 is the content your brain child or from CNN's producers? To whom all the screencaps, videos and photos of Anderson Cooper 360 belongs? Without doubt the screencaps and videos are the property and copyright of Time Warner, Turner and CNN. They hired a crew, invested thousands of dollars a minute just to produce that single shot you claim its yours without any effort from your part....That they don't mind people use it, at least for now, well what the heck its free promotion.

On the other hand. If you take your own camera, video recorder or paper pad and produce something all by yourself... then you can claim ownership. But if you care about it, don't make it public. Because once its out there its considered for "Fair Use" or it might become raw material for Digital Arts.

The fact is that Blogs don't play by the rules... just ask Perez Hilton... when we started this blog we went all the way to contact professional photographers that have worked with Anderson Cooper in order to beg them to give us some take outs or unpublished materials. We were lucky that at least one of them sent us a couple of images that were from a magazine that they never used. We were bursting with pride, until one blog lifted it and sent a copy to another one who gave all the credit to the blog that lifted it without our consent. When we rightfully wanted to clear up the situation, we were told that we were the ones who stole the image from "her friend". And the official anti Freaks campaign began... we became the blog that shall not be named, linked nor referenced. But even them don't have any problem lifting info from us.

I came across this article that addresses some issues we have seen in the recent past, for those of you who doubt companies screen super secret or public online communities, personal blogs and websites, reality is THEY DO. So be careful with your information and remember, that online is a VIRTUAL REALITY NOT LIFE. DON'T TAKE YOUR ONLINE PERSONA ( OR PERSONAS) TOO SERIOUSLY. And if you do, then its time to get a real life.

Private' online photos really aren't

By WAYNE PARRY, Associated Press WriterThu Jul 12, 7:16 PM ET

It's not just Jersey girls who get tripped up by embarrassing Internet photos.

Whether trying to become the next American Idol, Miss America, or just get an office job somewhere, people are starting to take steps to ensure that photos and personal information they post on the Web doesn't end up coming back to bite them.

The latest high-profile victim is Amy Polumbo, who was named Miss New Jersey last month, only to be hit with an alleged blackmail attempt by someone hoping to make her resign by threatening to release embarrassing photos of her.

The pageant board decided Thursday that the photos — which were in poor taste, but none featured any nudity — did not warrant stripping Polumbo of her crown.

"This was meant to be private," the 22-year-old told NBC's "Today" show on Thursday. "It was supposed to be between my friends and I."

But there's no such thing when it comes to photos posted online or e-mailed to others. Fellow Jersey girl Antonella Barba became worldwide news earlier this year when racy photos of the "American Idol" contestant surfaced during the competition.

"I used to say 'Cover your tracks,' but it really should be, 'Don't make tracks that need to be covered,'" Barba said Thursday. "Once anything is online, it's free rein.

"I feel so bad for her," said Barba, who has returned to college in Washington, D.C. to make up classes she missed while on the TV show. "I've been in the same situation she's been in. It disgusts me, people's interest in the dirt and trying to bring somebody down."

Polumbo's mother, Jen Wagner, said her daughter was just like millions of other young people who thought that just because their Facebook or MySpace page was set to "private," their photos would remain that way.

"They don't realize how many people can eventually see these photos," she said.

The photos of Polumbo came from her Facebook page, which has since been taken offline.

Embarrassment isn't the only consequence of personal photos surfacing. Many employers troll social networking sites like My Space, Facebook and others when checking out a job applicant or keeping tabs on employees.

Steven Jungman, director of recruiting for Houston-based ChaseSource LP, told of a young woman his firm helped land a job with a company working on a sensitive project.

"This was a project that had to be kept secret, that if the competition found out about it or the media wrote about it before it was rolled out, it would be very bad for business," he said. "It even had a secret nickname.

"Every day, twice a day, the company did a ... search for that title, just to make sure nothing was getting out about it," Jungman said. "One morning, an interesting link came up, to someone's My Space page. It went, 'My name is so-and so, I'm working on such-and-such for so-and-so.' And right next to that were photos that would make Anna Nicole Smith blush, and Paris Hilton go, 'Whoa!'"

Two days later, the woman was fired.

Other tales abound of job applicants getting passed over because their online pages showed them smoking marijuana, passed out after drinking, or flashing too much skin.

Theresa O'Neill, a career counselor at Rutgers University-Newark, urges students to take down their online photos while looking for a job.

"Think of it as being in a very large, public place like Yankee Stadium, taking the microphone and broadcasting your personal information to 50,000 people there," she said. "If you don't want everyone in the stadium to know the details of your personal life, then keep them to yourself."

At least some people are listening. A survey last year by the Web site found that 47 percent of recent graduates had changed or planned to change their Web pages because they were looking for a job.

Barba survived on "American Idol" for a time after the photos of her began circulating, before being voted off by viewers.

She has steadfastly declined to speculate on how the photos of her became public and says she's not planning any legal action.

"I don't have the time and energy to go after someone the way they went after me," she said. "We just want to prevent this from happening to someone else."

7 comentarios:

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

The Huffington Post has featured some great writing and writers. You should check them out.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Chris.

Anonymous said...

Freakspeakers took these pictures from CNN. Seems pretty clear to me. Other sites post sceen caps as well and claim them as their own.

I guess it is the same thing as recording a show on TV. That doesn't mean the person who taped it owns the movie.

Love the facial hair.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if it is ok to "lift" an image or repost something, so long as you give credit to its original source. I know I've done that in the past- the pic of Paris from this website (which I wrote was from this site) and a blog post from the Huff Post (outlinig the case for Dubya's impeachment), which I linked and listed the source and the author. Is that ok to do?

Anonymous said...

The fact is that Blogs don't play by the rules... just ask Perez Hilton...

Perez Hilton is also being sued by the photogs whose photos he steals and reuses without paying royalties. He's been dumped from at least one ISP for copyright violation and will probably be dumped by more before the suit wends its way through the courts.

The blogs are frankly being silly about which blog discovered which photo or which press release first - everyone uses the same search engines and alerts and probably discovers the same nugget of news simultaneously, so whining about how this blog or that blog stole a Turner Press Release from another is childish.

Taking photos and videos from places like CNN is one thing I have no problem with. You're essentially promoting their product. Posting other people's essays in such a way as to allow readers to believe you wrote them yourself? Both copyright violation AND plagiarism. Citing your sources is simple enough to do.

Anonymous said...

"The blogs are frankly being silly about which blog discovered which photo or which press release first - everyone uses the same search engines and alerts and probably discovers the same nugget of news simultaneously, so whining about how this blog or that blog stole a Turner Press Release from another is childish."

I agree with this. The pics don't belong to who found them first (because you don't know for a fact you are the first one to tine them) nor do they belong to the person who posted them to their blog first. They belong to CNN or Getty Images, or whoever they belong to.

Christiane: I don't know if you realize this, but as I'm sure you do know, if a person right clicks on a picture from the main page of the blog a function diabled box comes up meaning one can't copy it. But if you double click on the pic and it appears all by itself on the page, one can right click on it and copy it.


Don't think for me. Don't assume what I want to hear or read. Give me facts. Give me reasons. But not yours. Bring me debate. Enlighten me. Today, accountability is masked behind anonymity; bylines are hidden by zeros and ones. Everyone publishes; everyone is "in the know." Ethics are non-existent. Speculation is king. The truth is masked and a hostage. Empowered by our minds, WE ARE THE FREAKSPEAKERS!


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