I recently discovered that many of the images people upload onto these mytakes (and internet articles in general) are in fact copyright. Although the content could be covered by fair use policy (e. g. commentary or criticism), it's sketchy because the images are often used for illustration purposes rather than specifically commentary or criticism and corporations that copyright this content probably have better lawyers than individuals on this site do. You can be sued for up to $10,000.
Further complications arise when you take into account users that do not reside in the US and America has a notorious history of extraditing individuals for online activity that was not even anything illegal by their own country's laws. To make things worse, owners cannot delete mytakes they wrote in the past, nor can they delete images that were mistakenly uploaded and you cannot argue that you "did not intend to infringe copyright" (ignorance is not an excuse by law).
I'm not saying you should all be freaking out if you've posted image content on mytakes like I have, since the chances of the original artist discovering the content is slim (but not non-existent) and you *might* be able argue "fair use" (maybe!). However, it's definitely something to consider next time you write a mytake. GAG should better inform users of fair use policy and update site features so images can be removed from previous mytakes.
By the way, if you want to check out if you can use an image or not, check out the advanced search function on google images. You can filter out copyright images and select the option "free to use or share" under usage rights. You will be surprised at how many images on google image search are actually copyrighted (the vast majority).
Hopefully @Fathoms77 will come across this and the GAG team will have a solution.
Most Helpful Guy
Thanks for your concern!
We do encourage you to use pictures that aren't tagged or watermarked, but it's not a critical issue. If the owner of a particular image has an issue, they typically just ask the site to remove it and that's that. But as we rarely see any such request, it gives you an idea of how lax things are in that department.
Still, please do try to grab pics from Google Images that aren't watermarked. And let me add that I'd like to see some nice high-res pictures; good media is more likely to grab the eye. :) As for why we need images... come on. Ever seen an article ANYWHERE online that doesn't have at least one pic? The Internet has become a hugely visual medium and sadly, nobody reads much, so the more media, typically the better.
Of course, we'd never discourage a great, well-written, personal story. Hell, we love 'em. :P0
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