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Google can use your Web Albums Pics?

TonyB [PersonRank 10]

Wednesday, September 6, 2006
17 years ago5,320 views

Here's an interesting post which points out Google apparently has the right to use photos you post to Picasa Web Albums. What's your take on this, guys? Does this policy differ from other sites such as Flickr?

http://www.iconnectdots.com/ctd/2006/08/why_i_wont_be_u.html

Here's an excerpt from the ELU:

"By submitting, posting or displaying Content on or through Picasa Web Albums, you grant Google a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to reproduce, adapt, distribute and publish such Content through Picasa Web Albums, including RSS or other content feeds offered through Picasa Web Albums, and other Google services. In addition, by submitting, posting or displaying Content which is intended to be available to the general public, you grant Google a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to reproduce, adapt, distribute and publish such Content for the purpose of displaying, distributing and promoting Google services."

Tony

Ionut Alex. Chitu [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

Not again. Another guy posted something similar about YouTube and everybody talked about that. It's just nonsense.

Read this:
http://digg.com/tech_news/YouTube_s_new_policy_says_we_own_your_content

You own the content, you just grant them the right to republish your content in other ways (like a badge, including in blogs, promotional presentations).

Ionut Alex. Chitu [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

Read the sentences just before what you quoted:

"Your Rights

Google claims no ownership or control over any Content submitted, posted or displayed by you on or through Picasa Web Albums. You or a third party licensor, as appropriate, retain all patent, trademark and copyright to any Content you submit, post or display on or through Picasa Web Albums and you are responsible for protecting those rights, as appropriate."

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

Tony this is the typical footnote for those upload-your-stuff sites, I think.

TonyB [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

"Not again. Another guy posted something similar about YouTube and everybody talked about that. It's just nonsense."

Yes, even the Blog I linked to mentions the YouTube uproar. I admit I had not paid much attention when that came out.

If I am following this correctly, I own my pictures, but Google has the right to use them in promotional material?

Tony

Ionut Alex. Chitu [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

And I admit I didn't read that blog post. So I searched for that Digg and Picasa Web TOS.

And then I read that post. It's weird to see people that make mistakes in full knowledge of the facts.

Google can say: look, we have a nice photo album tool here. It looks so nice [your album here].

Most of the terms are to make sure you don't sue them if you think they've used your pictures or someone has included them in his blog without your permission.

SteveB [PersonRank 0]

17 years ago #

I'm the guy with the blog post and thought I'd weigh in.

This is a complex subject and – while I'm not a lawyer – I thought I'd send off an email that same day to Larry Lessig, Stanford Law professor and someone for whom I have the utmost respect (and have really enjoyed his books, BTW).

Since a Creative Commons license is one which I've embraced (as it's the cutting edge of copyright in my view) I thought I'd ask someone that sits on the CC Board of Directors and is an incredible thought leader in internet law.

In the email I brought up the YouTube fiasco and this new Google ToS and referenced my post. In part I asked:

"Is anyone working on trying to think-through how to, say, map Creative Commons to user generated content that somehow overrides Terms of Service that attempts to auto-generate a license and supercede content creator's rights?"

"This is an important problem, but I think there's less of a conflict here than it seems. The CC license governs the copyright owners' relationship to the world. She's free, however, to have a different relationship with a particular entity. That particular relationship can't contradict the CC license, unless it purports to be exclusive. We're working with them to avoid just this."

My entire premise (and maybe I just wasn't clear enough about it) is that the default Picasa ToS – while clearly indicating non-exclusivity which, in theory, makes it OK – is still remarkably broad in its interpretation of the rights granted to Google. So even though it's non-exclusive, they can essentially do *anything* with your content through the Picasa Web Service or as a promotional tool for Google.

For instance...

If Google were to offer a Picasa Travel offering and compile, say, all tagged images of Italy...they'd be free to do so. If you'd uploaded embarassing images of yourself in a thong with your gut hanging out while on the Italian Riviera, they could place that in the "Italy Travel comedy" section and be free to do so. Would you have any recourse? No...because the act of uploading the images into Picasa waives your control within Picasa (and the services it offers) or for promoting Google services...in perpetuity.

Yeah....Google does no evil so its probably OK and I'm just paranoid. My point was just that the overwhelming majority of people will be completely clueless over what they're giving up to use this "free" service. I'm not clueless so I won't use Picasa and I'm keepin' those damn thong shots to myself. ;-)

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