14 October 2009

A Case of "Huh?"

So I recently rejoined a "bear social networking" site (wink wink, nudge nudge) and I've come across several profiles with the following text:

WARNING PRIVACY NOTICE: Any institutions or persons using this site or any of its associated sites for studies, projects, or to copy and sell pictures or other profile content to magazines, other sites, etc. - You DO NOT have my permission to use any of my profile or pictures in any form or forum both current and future. If you have or do, it will be considered a serious violation of my privacy and will be subject to legal ramifications.

Now, I don't fault anyone for injecting this type of statement in his profile. We're all concerned about identity theft and it's not been unknown for someone to "steal" another person's picture and then use it to misrepresent themselves. But the head scratcher here is that the profiles on which I found this text are for - how would Elle Woods put it - unfortunate looking gentlemen. If the guys were extremely handsome, hot, hairy, and/or hung then okay but these are average guys. Perhaps I'm being cruel in my assessment but I really cannot see anyone taking any of their pictures for use in a magazine or on another website.

And so this begs the question: are you worried about someone "stealing" your picture and using it without your permission? Or do you adhere to the premise that you've posted your picture on the World Wide Web and therefore it is now accessible as property falling under the category of public domain? Something to think about....



Michael Rivers said...

I'm not sure what to think about that disclaimer. I've seen it on sites too. Anyone who puts photos out onto the web and then believes they have control over what happens to that image and where that image ends up--is a fool. Someone somewhere saves that image and it floats around the web forever! It is fascinating. I wonder what the lasting effect will be. We know have generations of people with nude photos floating around in cyberspace.

Mark in DE said...

Whereas I understand the concern of people 'stealing' photos from sites and misrepresenting themselves with the photos, I am of the opinion that if you don't want your photos 'stolen', then don't post them, OR post them in a format that does not allow copying or downloading.