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Before you contact us regarding any copyright infringement, especially in regards to the use of a photo owned by you but still appearing online at other media sources, please read what the law states very clearly according to two credible sources.

“In its most general sense, a fair use is any copying of copyrighted material done for a limited and “transformative” purpose, such as to comment upon, criticize, or parody a copyrighted work. Such uses can be done without permission from the copyright owner. In other words, fair use is a defense against a claim of copyright infringement. If your use qualifies as a fair use, then it would not be considered an infringement.

So what is a “transformative” use? If this definition seems ambiguous or vague, be aware that millions of dollars in legal fees have been spent attempting to define what qualifies as a fair use. There are no hard-and-fast rules, only general guidelines and varied court decisions, because the judges and lawmakers who created the fair use exception did not want to limit its definition. Like free speech, they wanted it to have an expansive meaning that could be open to interpretation.”

Most fair use analysis falls into two categories: (1) commentary and criticism, or (2) parody.

“Fair use is a legal doctrine that promotes freedom of expression by permitting the unlicensed use of copyright-protected works in certain circumstances. Section 107 of the Copyright Act provides the statutory framework for determining whether something is a fair use and identifies certain types of uses—such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research—as examples of activities that may qualify as fair use.  Section 107 calls for consideration of the following four factors in evaluating a question of fair use.”

For repetition here is what the law clearly states:

Such uses can be done without permission from the copyright owner.

We are a female sports, news and entertainment media. Our fictitious business statement is in California of the United States. We pay taxes to the IRS. Our ability to use photos without contacting the owner complies with the law under news reporting and commentary.

Now if we we’re using your photo in our marketing brochure, that would be different.

If you publicly falsely accuse a media source of copyright infringement like reporting to Google or posting that on your Social Media you may be liable for defamation of character or libel.

Here is the definition:

The act of making untrue statements about another which damages his/her reputation. If the defamatory statement is printed or broadcast over the media it is libel and, if only oral, it is slander.

We consider ourselves to be reasonable people. If you feel you would like us to remove your photo, without falsely accusing us of copyright infringement, please contact us and professionally express why you would like your photo removed. If you are a public figure and have used the media in the past to promote your brand, make a profit from that but now you’ve changed your mind; that will be taken into consideration.

If you would like clarification on how you want your photo credited, please contact us as well.

As an example many companies in the movie and sports industries have photos taken of celebrities. In their copyright statements they instruct the media outlets very clearly on how they want the photo credited but the photo can still be used. Even Wikimedia which is a free information and photo source often states very clearly how they want the photo credited but it can applied in a fair use manner.

After reading this and doing your own private research “first”, including consulting with a copyright attorney, then please contact us if you still have concerns.



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