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Facebook issues (article) Found this on Yahoo!

Posted by on Feb. 18, 2009 at 11:17 AM
  • 8 Replies

Facebook backtracks on terms of use after protests

NEW YORK - In an about-face following a torrent of online protests, Facebook is backing off a change in its user policies while it figures how best to resolve questions like who controls the information shared on the social networking site.

The site, which boasts 175 million users from around the world, had quietly updated its terms of use — its governing document — a couple of weeks ago. The changes sparked an uproar after popular consumer rights advocacy blog Consumerist.com pointed them out Sunday, in a post titled "Facebook's New Terms Of Service: 'We Can Do Anything We Want With Your Content. Forever.'"

Facebook has since sought to reassure its users — tens of thousands of whom had joined protest groups on the site — that this is not the case. And on Wednesday morning, users who logged on to Facebook were greeted by a message saying that the site is reverting to its previous terms of use policies while it resolves the issues raised.

Facebook spelled out, in plain English rather than the legalese that prompted the protests, that it "doesn't claim rights to any of your photos or other content. We need a license in order to help you share information with your friends, but we don't claim to own your information."

Tens of thousands of users joined protest groups on Facebook, saying the new terms grant the site the ability to control their information forever, even after they cancel their accounts.

This prompted a clarification from Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's founder, who told users in a blog post Monday that "on Facebook, people own their information and control who they share it with."

Zuckerberg, who started Facebook while still in college, also acknowledged that a "lot of the language in our terms is overly formal and protective of the rights we need to provide this service to you."

But this wasn't enough to quell user protests, and the site also created a group called "Facebook Bill of Rights and Responsibilities," designed to let users give input on Facebook's terms of use. It also apologized for what it called "the confusion around these issues."

"We never intended to claim ownership over people's content even though that's what it seems like to many people," read a post from Facebook on the bill of rights page.

The latest controversy was not the first between the rapidly growing site and its users over its five-year history.

In late 2007, a tracking tool called "Beacon" caught users off-guard by broadcasting information about their shopping habits and activities at other Web sites. After initially defending the practice, Facebook ultimately allowed users to turn Beacon off. A redesign of the site last year also prompted thousands to protest, but in that case Facebook kept its new look.

Palo Alto, Calif.-based Facebook is privately held. Microsoft Corp. bought a 1.6 percent stake in the company in 2007 for $240 million as part of a broader advertising partnership.


 

by on Feb. 18, 2009 at 11:17 AM
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Replies (1-8):
momof282
by on Feb. 18, 2009 at 11:32 AM

I have read the guidelines on Facebook this morning. I am quite pleased to use Facebook as a way to connect and communicate with friends. It is alot like a instant message, because it can be live, at the time.  I will continue to use this internet medium.

Lori Hawes momof282
gogetem
by Bronze Member on Feb. 18, 2009 at 11:48 AM

This is a pretty big deal for photographers that use facebook.  Glad I don't!

My Flickr
Photography by Kat Benson. Get yours at bighugelabs.com/flickr
ShadowRaven
by Bronze Member on Feb. 18, 2009 at 2:48 PM

I'm not bashing, but I wrote this last night and have posted this in response to several posts on this site, as well as blogs on both MySpace and Facebook.  It's just proof that people don't read the fine print.

 

"When a person shares information on Facebook, they first need to grant Facebook a license to use that information so that we can show it to the other people they've asked us to share it with. Without this license, we couldn't help people share that information."

 

"Proprietary Rights in Content on MySpace.

By displaying or publishing ("posting") any Content on or through the MySpace Services, you hereby grant to MySpace a limited license to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce, and distribute such Content solely on or through the MySpace Services, including without limitation distributing part or all of the MySpace Website in any media formats and through any media channels, except Content marked "private" will not be distributed outside the MySpace Website. "

MySpace also has another nasty little clause:

"After you remove your Content from the MySpace Website we will cease distribution as soon as practicable, and at such time when distribution ceases, the license will terminate."

As soon as practicable.  This can mean indefinately, or however long MySpace sees fit.  It does not mean they will stop distributing as soon as you terminate your account.

This is from Facebook's Terms:

"You are solely responsible for the User Content that you Post on or through the Facebook Service. You hereby grant Facebook an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license (with the right to sublicense) to (a) use, copy, publish, stream, store, retain, publicly perform or display, transmit, scan, reformat, modify, edit, frame, translate, excerpt, adapt, create derivative works and distribute (through multiple tiers), any User Content you (i) Post on or in connection with the Facebook Service or the promotion thereof subject only to your privacy settings or (ii) enable a user to Post, including by offering a Share Link on your website and (b) to use your name, likeness and image for any purpose, including commercial or advertising, each of (a) and (b) on or in connection with the Facebook Service or the promotion thereof. You represent and warrant that you have all rights and permissions to grant the foregoing licenses."

 

The only real differences here are that the two sites word their terms differently, and that MySpace limits it's license to "MySpace Services".  This includes, but is not limited to:  any and everybody that has a MySpace account, lawyers, sponsors (both corporate and private), etc, etc.  That means that Tom can go to your profile, take anything you've uploaded or posted on your profile, and distribute this stuff to any and all sex offenders, rapists and murderers he sees fit, as long as they are in some way, shape, or form, connected to MySpace.  Granted I'm stretching a bit, but it's just an example. Stating that MySpace's license is "limited" is just a way to make you THINK that they can't distribute to anyone they want.  Facebook just comes out and tells you upfront that they can distribute to anyone they feel like instead of beating around the bush like MySpace does.

If you want to retain the right to distribute your photos, etc to whom you want, is to not do it.  This includes emailing pics to family and friends.  Make hard copies of them (do not put anything on your computer, as it can be hacked) and if anyone wants to see them, they can LOOK at them, but not have any copies.  The absolute only way to keep your rights of distribution in tact it to not distribute.  Period.

Welcome to the world of Legalities.  Learn it. Live it. Love/hate it.

 

.Tiggeroo87.
by on Feb. 18, 2009 at 3:33 PM

That's what I did in the past week. I bought 132 Gigs on a memory stick, it holds about 50,000 pictures, and over the year and a half, since 2007 when my son was born, I have about 7500 pictures already!!! That's always good to have a backup memory stick as well, or backup hard drive incase one fails, is stolen, or broken w/e.

Quoting ShadowRaven:

 

If you want to retain the right to distribute your photos, etc to whom you want, is to not do it.  This includes emailing pics to family and friends.  Make hard copies of them (do not put anything on your computer, as it can be hacked) and if anyone wants to see them, they can LOOK at them, but not have any copies.  The absolute only way to keep your rights of distribution in tact it to not distribute.  Period.

Welcome to the world of Legalities.  Learn it. Live it. Love/hate it.

 


LaNette000
by on Feb. 19, 2009 at 1:13 AM

The reason I posted this is because I have seen 2 conflicting post about the issue. I think Facebook is construing their policy information. They need to be more exact. Giving two different policies are wrong IMO. They need to decide which policy they go by.

Quoting ShadowRaven:

I'm not bashing, but I wrote this last night and have posted this in response to several posts on this site, as well as blogs on both MySpace and Facebook.  It's just proof that people don't read the fine print.

 

"When a person shares information on Facebook, they first need to grant Facebook a license to use that information so that we can show it to the other people they've asked us to share it with. Without this license, we couldn't help people share that information."

 

"Proprietary Rights in Content on MySpace.

By displaying or publishing ("posting") any Content on or through the MySpace Services, you hereby grant to MySpace a limited license to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce, and distribute such Content solely on or through the MySpace Services, including without limitation distributing part or all of the MySpace Website in any media formats and through any media channels, except Content marked "private" will not be distributed outside the MySpace Website. "

MySpace also has another nasty little clause:

"After you remove your Content from the MySpace Website we will cease distribution as soon as practicable, and at such time when distribution ceases, the license will terminate."

As soon as practicable.  This can mean indefinately, or however long MySpace sees fit.  It does not mean they will stop distributing as soon as you terminate your account.

This is from Facebook's Terms:

"You are solely responsible for the User Content that you Post on or through the Facebook Service. You hereby grant Facebook an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license (with the right to sublicense) to (a) use, copy, publish, stream, store, retain, publicly perform or display, transmit, scan, reformat, modify, edit, frame, translate, excerpt, adapt, create derivative works and distribute (through multiple tiers), any User Content you (i) Post on or in connection with the Facebook Service or the promotion thereof subject only to your privacy settings or (ii) enable a user to Post, including by offering a Share Link on your website and (b) to use your name, likeness and image for any purpose, including commercial or advertising, each of (a) and (b) on or in connection with the Facebook Service or the promotion thereof. You represent and warrant that you have all rights and permissions to grant the foregoing licenses."

 

The only real differences here are that the two sites word their terms differently, and that MySpace limits it's license to "MySpace Services".  This includes, but is not limited to:  any and everybody that has a MySpace account, lawyers, sponsors (both corporate and private), etc, etc.  That means that Tom can go to your profile, take anything you've uploaded or posted on your profile, and distribute this stuff to any and all sex offenders, rapists and murderers he sees fit, as long as they are in some way, shape, or form, connected to MySpace.  Granted I'm stretching a bit, but it's just an example. Stating that MySpace's license is "limited" is just a way to make you THINK that they can't distribute to anyone they want.  Facebook just comes out and tells you upfront that they can distribute to anyone they feel like instead of beating around the bush like MySpace does.

If you want to retain the right to distribute your photos, etc to whom you want, is to not do it.  This includes emailing pics to family and friends.  Make hard copies of them (do not put anything on your computer, as it can be hacked) and if anyone wants to see them, they can LOOK at them, but not have any copies.  The absolute only way to keep your rights of distribution in tact it to not distribute.  Period.

Welcome to the world of Legalities.  Learn it. Live it. Love/hate it.

 


.Tiggeroo87.
by on Feb. 19, 2009 at 1:15 AM

ITA with this.

Quoting LaNette000:

The reason I posted this is because I have seen 2 conflicting post about the issue. I think Facebook is construing their policy information. They need to be more exact. Giving two different policies are wrong IMO. They need to decide which policy they go by.



ShadowRaven
by Bronze Member on Feb. 19, 2009 at 9:38 AM

Their not construing their policy.  They have the right to change their terms at any point, without any notice, and without informing anyone.  They changed their terms.  This caused everyone to freak out, once they found out about it.  Now their going back to the original terms to calm everyone down, UNTIL they decide how they want their new terms worded so as to keep hysteria to a minimum. 

Quoting LaNette000:

The reason I posted this is because I have seen 2 conflicting post about the issue. I think Facebook is construing their policy information. They need to be more exact. Giving two different policies are wrong IMO. They need to decide which policy they go by.



LaNette000
by on Feb. 19, 2009 at 1:51 PM

Yes, they have!! They realized people weren't happyabout it and changed it all back. What ignorance! I hate facebook anyway! I don't care if you posted this 10 times, I still have the freedom to post what I've read and post with my opinions on it.

Quoting ShadowRaven:

Their not construing their policy.  They have the right to change their terms at any point, without any notice, and without informing anyone.  They changed their terms.  This caused everyone to freak out, once they found out about it.  Now their going back to the original terms to calm everyone down, UNTIL they decide how they want their new terms worded so as to keep hysteria to a minimum. 

Quoting LaNette000:

The reason I posted this is because I have seen 2 conflicting post about the issue. I think Facebook is construing their policy information. They need to be more exact. Giving two different policies are wrong IMO. They need to decide which policy they go by.


 


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