Copyright Images in On-line Forum

Advice for those new to the concepts of copyright
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ScruffyDuck
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Copyright Images in On-line Forum

Post by ScruffyDuck »

My apologies for asking another question. I am a joint administrator for a forum (similar to this one). The question is :-

if a member posts an image which is found to be copyright by PicRights or similar who would be liable for the infringement. The poster, the forum or both or none!

Thanks again

Jon
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AndyJ
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Re: Copyright Images in On-line Forum

Post by AndyJ »

Hi again Jon,

Provided that the admins and moderators of the site do not pre-moderate* postings on the forum, they will not be liable for any copyright infringement perpetrated by a user. This is on the proviso that once the site admin is informed of the alleged infringement, they remove the item 'expeditiously'. What constitutes expeditious will depend on the nature of the site itself. For example an admin or moderator would not be expected to be on duty 24/7 just to deal with such requests if a site was small or only had a few active members. Youtube on the other hand is expected to react within hours if not minutes of receiving a notification.

The legal basis for this is the EU's eCommerce Directive, specifically Articles 14-15. Article 15 establishes that a site is under no obligation to pro-actively monitor what its users post. This exemption also applies to other forms of liability such as defamation or incitement to racial hatred, for example.

Although the UK is no longer a member of the EU, this Directive remains part of UK law as it was incorporated here before Brexit. Interestingly since we left the EU a new Directive (the Digital Single Market Directive) has imposed a new requirement on larger sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Youtube to, in effect, provide upload filters. However this does not apply in the UK.

*In order to be liable, a site's admin needs to have 'actual knowledge' that something infringes copyright.
Advice or comment provided here is not and does not purport to be legal advice as defined by s.12 of Legal Services Act 2007
ScruffyDuck
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Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2022 11:36 am

Re: Copyright Images in On-line Forum

Post by ScruffyDuck »

Thanks very much Andy.
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