New Facebook Guidelines Copyright Status Update

Here we go again folks.  I’ve seen quite a few of my friends posting this status update…

In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, comics, paintings, professional photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention). For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times!

(Anyone read…ing this can copy this text and paste it on their Facebook Wall. This will place

them under protection of copyright laws. By the present communiqué, I notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents. The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents and/or any staff under Facebook’s direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punished by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are recommended to publish a notice like this, or if you prefer, you may copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, you will be tacitly allowing the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in your profile status updates…
Since so many people are falling for this (and really, it’s not a malicious scam or anything, it’s just annoying, and will give you a false sense of privacy or security), I’ve decided it’s time to break it down and let you know what is going on.


First issue is in the first paragraph… guess what, there is no such thing as the Berner Convention, and while we are getting all “legal” in the 3rd paragraph you can see reference to the “Rome Statute, which deals with international criminals, it’s basically an international court that deals with war criminals and crimes against humanity.  I’m sure that totally has to do with the pictures you’ve posted on Facebook… right?


Second.  When you sign up for Facebook you agree to their terms and conditions.  Facebook is a free service.  You agree to their rules when you sign up, if you don’t like their rules you can delete your account and go elsewhere.  You cannot negate their terms and conditions by writing a status update on your page.  You either agreed to them or you didn’t.  You can’t just say “hey, you can’t use my content”.  The truth is, you set your privacy levels.  If you make a photo available to the public, it CAN be used by Facebook.  So let me put it this way.  If Facebook says in their terms and conditions (which you totally read all the way through when you created your account… right?) that they can use your profile picture in any promotions they wanted, do you think you could tell them that they could not just by posting a status update?  No, because you already agreed that they could.


From the movie the Social Network… things on the internet aren’t written in pencil, they are written in PEN.  You don’t want something to get out or be used or be shared or been seen, then don’t post it on the internet.  Even if your privacy settings are like Fort Knox, you always run the risk of people you don’t want seeing your stuff, seeing it.  Get it?  Got it?  Good… now can we please get back to posting updates about what you ate for Thanksgiving, cause that’s what I want to read today!

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About the author

Sarah Werle Kimmel

Sarah Werle Kimmel is a digital parenting coach and family tech expert. She has spent the last 20 years of her career working as a Microsoft Certified IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech LLC to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a family tech expert on local NBC, CBS, ABC and FOX news affiliates, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website

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