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March 03, 2008

Snapped Shot Back (Mostly)

Brian's statement on the site. The matter seems resolved... mostly.

He credits Gabriel with providing him some good, if tough, legal advice.

Here's the dealio and my admission of some dishonesty, or, rather, lack of candor. I sorta thought AP had a legitimate gripe here. What I've said to Brian via email was not exactly what I posted here. Hey, it's family, sort of.

And you don't go against the family.

Anyway, I believe, though do not know for a fact, that courts have ruled that images can be hotlinked from a site without legal consequence; there is no copyright protection for a link, the idea goes. So I believe (but do not know) that Brian can simply use the img src command to display pictures on his site, so long as that image is being pulled from the owner's servers.

I believe the problem came from his copying the pictures and uploading them and displaying them with his own bandwidth, thus establishing, sort of, "constructive ownership" of the pictures. Sort of like squatting, where you do just enough to basically challenge ownership of someone else's property.

This is an odd rule, because one can essentially steal a picture and display it on one's own site so long as one does the picture's owner the courtesy of simultaneously stealing his bandwidth.

Make sense? No, not at all.

I almost always hotlink major media pictures this way. With smaller blogs, I take the pic, with credit, but not to steal the picture, just to spare them the dick move of also leaching their bandwidth (and for smaller blogs, that bandwidth may be pretty limited and they may get stuck with a big bill if bigger blogs begin hotlinking their pics).

An odd rule with strange implications, but it appears to be what the courts have ruled.

In any event, I hope Snapped Shot continues getting all up in AP's grill.

Hmm: I may be wrong about the hotlinking thing.

An advisor writes:

I know that you're no novice when it comes to this kind of thing, but I'm not convinced that you're correct about hotlinking images. The display of an image on your webpage, even if it's loaded from a remote server, constitutes "reproducing" the image. In the case of copyrighted works, you would face the same concerns about infringement as if you had copied the photo to your server and then republished it.

I'm no IP expert, but I have had some experience with copyright issue... that lead me to believe that you are in gray area at best, leaning into "no, not really"
territory. You might want to stick another caveat lector in your post.

Consider it so stuck. Could have sworn I read that though.

digg this
posted by Ace at 04:07 PM

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