End user agreements are often something most of us pass over without a glance.
I mean, really, how many of us have ever read the Terms of Service agreement to something like the Apple App Store or on Google Play?
But, for those of us that work with creative media and make a living off of it, these horse pill documents do get some level of scrutiny and that’s simply because we’re always looking out for our intellectual property.
After all, no one wants to sign up for a service only for it to steal your work.
And that seems to be why every time a service like 500px or Flickr updates their terms, some people get really upset because change is often good but when it comes to end agreements with online websites, change is a very scary thing.
That’s what 500px users are facing this week as the service updated its terms but not quietly and definitely without controversy.
PetaPixel tells us that a number of photographers are deleting their accounts? Why? It all has to do with a change in language that users first see.
That reads in part:
“By submitting Visual Content to the Site, you grant to 500px a non-exclusive or exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license to use, sublicense, distribute, reproduce, modify, adapt, publicly perform and publicly display such Visual Content in connection with the Services. This license will exist for the period during which the Visual Content is posted on the Site and will automatically terminate upon the removal of the Visual Content from the Site, subject to the terms of any license granted by 500px or through our authorized distributors and these Terms.”
But, as PetaPixel points out, this language is pretty close to what Instagram says. Yet this isn’t the only thing that is causing ire among photographers.
This is also causing somewhat of a stir:
“You waive any moral rights (and any similar rights) with respect to the Visual Content to the extent permitted by law, and if no waiver is permitted, you agree not to enforce the right against 500px or our distributors or clients;
500px and our distributors have the right to modify, alter and amend photo titles, descriptions, tags, metadata and other accompanying information for any Visual Content and the right to submit Visual Content to other parties and authorized agents for the purpose of creating tags for Visual Content.”
Basically, it looks like 500px has combined the standard user agreement with the contributor agreement which was separate previously and only something that people who were licensing photos on the website had to agree to in the past. That seems to have changed but it has people on edge.
500px even explains the changes in an easy-to-understand post you can find right here.
Of course, wariness is part and parcel with this industry as we outlined in the opening of this blog post. Still, it might be misplaced here.
What do you think? Are the new terms that 500px is putting forward just more of the same old standard stuff or is there a reason to be worried? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Also, check out some of the other photography news articles on Light Stalking by clicking here.