Are Facebook photos public property?

Facebook’s terms of service expressly state that by uploading any type of content, whether in the form of photos or material, you are automatically assigning control of copyright to Facebook. Therefore, all photos you upload to Facebook become the property of Facebook. This means that Facebook can sell copies of photos posted by you without paying you any profit. Whenever you share photos with your Facebook friends, you are giving up ownership of any intellectual property rights you may have in the photos you upload.

This applies regardless of whether you post the photos to a publicly accessible area Facebook or not. By posting photos to any area of ​​the Facebook site, you are granting an irrevocable, perpetual, and non-exclusive global license, which includes the right to sublicense, use, copy, publicly perform, reformat, translate, distribute, and the right to make derivative works of the photos to Facebook. When you decide to remove the content you license May not necessarily rescind and Facebook has the right to retain archived copies of posted material.

This is why some subscribers choose to upload smaller photos to Facebook, that is, to discourage people from reusing them, as smaller photos will be of lower quality and grainy in appearance. However, you must remember that every time you upload a full-size photo, you are granting Facebook the right to save a copy of the photo on their servers, which they can then freely modify and adapt.

If you still choose to upload your photos to Facebook, make sure the images you upload are resized low resolution photos to reduce the chance of them being reprinted or reused in ads. If you upload the photos in original size, Facebook has the right to use your photos for any commercial purpose without giving you any credit or compensation.

The only surefire solution for those who don’t want to lose control of their photos is not to upload them in the first place. People often post their photos on their blogs or a photo sharing website like Flickr to retain ownership of their photos. However, in reality, once the photos are posted on the internet and available for anyone to view, they are in the public domain.

Anything that is posted on publicly accessible areas of the Internet becomes a public record. Determining which areas of the Internet are public and which areas are private is not easy. Having control over the ownership of the property in your photos will not necessarily guarantee that your photos will remain private once they are published on the internet.

While you can set your privacy settings on Facebook so that only your friends can see the photos you upload, there are many ways that people can bypass these protections. There is no guarantee that you can guarantee the privacy of your photos on Facebook by using the privacy settings.

It’s safer to assume that every time you post photos anywhere on the web, people can acquire them and use them for purposes that you would not accept and that could be embarrassing and illegal. Photos are often stolen on the internet and used for identity theft or pornography purposes without the subject and / or owner being aware of it.

If you want to share photos on the Internet, it is preferable to use a secure private network where the content is encrypted and served using peer to peer technology. As long as data is stored on a central server, it is susceptible to being hacked.

Photos are often uploaded to Facebook without the person uploading them having legal ownership of the copyright in the photos. It is naive to think that Facebook or other social media sites have time to check the copyright status of every image that is posted to your site or copied and pasted from your site to another site on the Internet.


As long as the photos you post on Facebook contain images of other people, it is advisable to obtain permission from the subjects of the photos. There are many situations where photos are posted on Facebook that are not subject to the copyright ownership of the person who posted them.

For those photos to be removed, a person must file a request on Facebook or obtain a court order. This may involve proving that the offending image violates Facebook’s terms of service or common law.

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