ASMP Issues Statement on twitpic Terms of Service

ASMP LogoPRESS SUMMARY – The American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) has issued a statement alerting members to the terms imposed by twitpic, a service which allows users to share media on Twitter in real-time. In response to inquiries from members since twitpic made changes to the language of its terms of service on May 10th, ASMP has reviewed the website and determined that twitpic’s terms are contrary to the best interests of photographers. ASMP has also advised that photographers seeking to post images online for linking in messages through social networking services such as Twitter or otherwise, should look for terms of service such as those used by Mobypicture.

According to ASMP General Counsel Victor S. Perlman, “Twitpic’s terms of service grant them broad rights to license, sublicense and otherwise use uploaded images, whether for commercial purposes or not and whether compensated or not, without any obligation to pay anything to the content owners. Further, twitpic imposes a requirement on users that they indemnify and hold harmless twitpic, its officers and employees, against any claims arising out of the use of any content posted on twitpic.” Perlman went on to say, “In contrast, Mobypicture’s terms of service are short, simple and to the point and it is to be commended for its photographer-friendly stance and terms of use. Under those terms, all rights of uploaded content by users remain the property of users and those rights cannot be sold or used in a commercial way by Mobypicture or affiliated third party partners without consent from the user.”

ASMP urges members and other photographers to look carefully at the terms of each website to make certain that they are not inadvertently being deprived of potential sources of income. ASMP has encouraged photographers to stay informed about terms of service on social networking sites and has reviewed a number of sites and prepared findings and recommendations. For ASMP’s Best Practices Recommendations for Social Networking Sites, go here.

ASMP is the premier trade association for photographers, providing members with all the tools, information and support needed to run successful photography businesses. Over 7,000 strong with chapters throughout the country, ASMP leads the way on issues critical to the rights of imaging professionals.

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