Feeds

Twitpic T&Cs spark teacup storm

Your pics are our pics: so what's new?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Twitpic has sparked outrage among the Twitter user community by changing its terms and conditions.

Sometime early in May, the photo-sharing site replaced its broad (and ill-defined) copyright statement with a new, more detailed policy.

Formerly, the heart of Twitpic’s copyright was a single sentence: “By uploading your photos to Twitpic you give Twitpic permission to use or distribute your photos on Twitpic.com or affiliated sites.” [Our emphasis in italics - El Reg.]

The new policy adds a lot of detail, and has been interpreted as turning Twitpic into yet another outfit that crowd-sources free content that it can then onsell at a profit. The key items are:

“To publish another Twitpic user’s content for any commercial purpose or for distribution beyond the acceptable Twitter "retweet" which links back to the original user’s content page on Twitpic, whether online, in print publication, television, or any other format, you are required to obtain permission from Twitpic in advance of said usage and attribute credit to Twitpic as the source where you have obtained the content.”

A million sharp-eyed bush lawyers note that this means if someone wants to re-use something from Twitpic in, for example, a newspaper, they need to ask Twitpic, but not the original poster.

The second is this:

“…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.”

In other words, Twitpic can do what it likes, including editing, with posted photos without asking the original owner’s permission.

The reaction has probably taught Twitpic – and other photo-sharing services who are probably looking at their own T&Cs, for reasons I’ll discuss in a moment – a valuable lesson. If you’re going to change the terms of service, don’t try to do it on the quiet. And make sure you’re willing to explain your reasons in public, rather than have others explain it for you.

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
MEN WANTED to satisfy town full of yearning BRAZILIAN HOTNESS
'Prettier, better organised, more harmonious than if men were in charge'
Cops baffled by riddle of CHICKEN who crossed ROAD
'Officers were unable to determine Chicken's intent'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
Drunkards warned: If you can't walk in a straight line, don't shop online, you fool!
Put it away boys. Cover them up ladies. Your credit cards, we mean
Why your mum was WRONG about whiffy tattooed people
They're a future source of RENEWABLE ENERGY
Murder accused DIDN'T ask Siri 'how to hide my roommate'
US court hears of cached browser image - not actual request
Chomp that sausage: Brits just LOVE scoffing a Full Monty
Sales of traditional brekkie foods soar as hungry folk get their mitts greasy
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?