Is Printing All Right’s Reserved Facebook Photos Legal?
Google Watching: Unauthorized Photograph Use for Discipline
A Thomas Hawk reader has a post up regarding photos on Facebook leading to school discipline for kids drinking in photos.
His question basically is would it be fair use for parents to print out photos from Facebook and give them to school officials violating a photographer’s copyright?
Irrespective of the fact that high school kids shouldn’t be drinking and maybe that’s worse than copyright violations, technically would a copyright be violated in a case such as this?
Certainly anyone could feel free to look at these photos on the web. But if say a kid took them down could physical copies then be legally used?
Here’s his take:
“So, I am a high school student with a Facebook. Like most students, my friends attend parties and (sometimes) take pictures. These photos are often posted on Facebook or MySpace and may contain actions which would violate the Athletic/Activity Code which many students sign.
Recently, school officials obtained copies (I’m told from a parent, but that is unconfirmed) and began to discipline students for what they had done in the photos (underage alcohol issues).
Now, my question is, did the school infringe on the copyright of the photographers. They have obviously made unauthorized copies of the photos by printing them and I believe they have obtained up to 200 pictures. I would hardly suppose this is a fair use as it seems to have a malicious “nature” and the amount is “substantial.”
Of course if it were one of my four kids drinking and I saw the photo (thank goodness I still have a few years yet before I’ll be needing to deal with this one) I think copyright would be the least of my concerns, but it does raise an interesting question with regards to image copyright.