Facebook is handing over some valuable rights to creators who make images and graphics. In a Monday morning update, the social media platform says it’s working with a cadre of partners who will soon be able to decide if Facebook users can use their graphics and to what extent.
For example, let’s say People magazine has established its rights over a certain photo used on its Facebook page, but other users copy and paste it into one of their own posts. At that point, Facebook says People will now have the option to allow users to keep using the image, request that the image be taken down, or limit the territories where the image can be used.
“We want to make sure that we understand the use case very, very well from that set of trusted partners before we expand it out because, as you can imagine, a tool like this is a pretty sensitive one and a pretty powerful one, and we want to make sure that we have guardrails in place to ensure that people are able to use it safely and properly,” says Dave Axelgard, product manager of creator and publisher experience at Facebook, in a comment to The Verge.
Facebook continues to clean up its own backyard
In the past, Facebook has admitted that its content enforcement “wasn’t perfect.” However, the company seems to be trying to get on the right track following events like the Cambridge Analytica scandal. One example would be its ban of hate groups.
Facebook handing over rights management to content creators will likely cause issues for its users who love posting pictures, memes, and other similar content.
While there are some content creators who create digital fodder for their own jollies, there are many who do it for a living and expect platforms that thrive on content to protect ownership rights. That potentially puts Facebook users who plead innocent because they found the photo on another page, didn’t plan to profit from it, or saw others using the same photo in a tough position.