LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The internet is a deep and wide sea of articles, videos, and photos that are incredibly easy to snatch and post on social media venues as one's own.
Imagine losing all of your brand's fan base, videos, photos, interactions, and everything else just by not adhering to the social network's guidelines. While you may not have seen a page get shutdown, it does happen, and experts say it actually happens quite often. Many times the business is warned beforehand, but Facebook reserves the right to shut it down without notice if the page is not complying with their guidelines.
• U.S. Copyright Office: Definitions
Facebook's Terms of Service state that, "You will not post content or take any action on Facebook that infringes or violates someone else's rights or otherwise violates the law." Then, under a section labeled "Intellectual Property," the network states, "Before sharing content on Facebook, please be sure you have the rights to do so. We ask that you respect copyrights, trademarks, and other legal rights."
Ignoring Facebook's copyright restrictions could result in the permanent removal of a business' page. Just ask The Cool Hunter, a page with thousands of likes and tons of engagement. It was removed for this very reason.
After being shut down, a representative said in a blog post,
"With FB, Tumblr, Pinterest and all the other image-sharing opportunities today, millions of people and organizations share images - theirs and someone else's - freely every day. We WANT to give credit always, but in many cases we cannot find that information"
Bottom line: When posting content that doesn't belong to you, make sure to attribute the native owner, and if possible, link to their page or website. If you don't know whose content it is, it's probably best to just avoid posting it. The possible ramifications aren't worth it.
• Social Media Today: The Copyright Perils of Social Media Marketing
• Slideshare: Laws, Ethics, and Social Media
• Social Scoop for Business: Is your Facebook contest legal?