The controversial deal with celeb photo agency WENN means they can sell users uploads and receive a cut, while the photo’s owners get nothing.
Twitpic, the largest image sharing service for Twitter, has always been one of the most popular ways for users to upload and share their photos. However, a change to their terms and conditions, and now a controversial partnership, is threatening that.
Until recently, the site has always enabled users to retain full rights to their content. It has now changed its terms to grant itself a commercial licence to the uploaded images. Here’s the new wording:
You retain all ownership rights to Content uploaded to Twitpic. However, by submitting Content to Twitpic, you hereby grant Twitpic a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform the Content in connection with the Service and Twitpic’s (and its successors’ and affiliates’) business, including without limitation for promoting and redistributing part or all of the Service (and derivative works thereof) in any media formats and through any media channels.
In addition to that, Twitpic has announced a deal with celeb photo agency WENN, giving it exclusive rights to sell uploaded images of celebrities in exchange for a cut of the profits. The companies have failed to clarify whether the photo’s owners will receive a share as well, although this is unlikely. So members of the public who spot a celebrity and snap a quick photo or celebs who upload pictures of themselves will be both uncredited and unrewarded.