Flickr Finally Realizes That Not All DMCA Takedowns Are Legit

from the about-freaking-time dept

A few months ago, we noted how in certain cases Flickr would completely delete images (and comments) when it received a DMCA takedown notice. That meant that even if the takedown was bogus -- as so many are -- after you contested the takedown and could put back the image, you probably lost everything else on that page. That's kind of ridiculous. As Jake Rome alerts us, Yahoo (owner of Flickr) finally realized that perhaps it should change its policy and, instead, put the targeted image in limbo to allow the uploader to contest the takedown:
We want to let you know that we have implemented a global change in the standard takedown process that will benefit the whole Flickr community going forward.

When a photo is removed from the site based on a notice of alleged copyright infringement, we will temporarily show a placeholder and the member will have an opportunity to respond before the image is made unavailable.

If the alleged copyright infringement is found to be fraudulent, the image in question will be restored, and the photopage will look like before.
It's really quite amazing that it took this long for Flickr to realize this was needed.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 13th, 2012 @ 10:59am

    Megaupload

    Isn't this exactly what Megaupload was doing? What's the point of the DMCA counternotification if you delete the file completely?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    John Doe, Jun 13th, 2012 @ 11:03am

    They knew it, it took this long to provide a fix

    I am sure they knew this long ago, it just took them this long to provide a fix. They probably had other, more interesting features to build, test and deploy that this one took a back burner. You have to wonder what got delayed to put in this fix? I guess copyright, in this case, isn't helping progress the useful arts but hindering it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 11:12am

    FTFY

    If the alleged copyright infringement is found to be fraudulent, the image in question will be restored, the photopage will look like before, but nothing will happen to the accuser and they will be able to continue their fraud as long as they like.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 13th, 2012 @ 11:20am

    "If the alleged copyright infringement is found to be fraudulent [...]"

    Shouldn't that be "if the alleged copyright infringement claim is fraudulent"?

    After all, if the infringement itself is fraudulent, wouldn't that justify them taking it down?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    jakerome (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 11:40am

    Baby steps to the door, baby steps to the door...

    Definitely good news, even if 5 years overdue (c.v. Michael Crook v. Thomas Hawk). It is good for Yahoo!/Flickr to acknowledge their mistake & correct it. Makes me more confident that my photos won't be arbitrarily deleted.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 12:35pm

    This is why we desperately need SOPA / ACTA / etc

    If companies like Flickr can unilaterally undermine Hollywood's ability to arbitrarily have your content permanently deleted upon mere accusation, then what recourse does Hollywood have other than police state measures?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 13th, 2012 @ 12:50pm

    Re: Megaupload

    Generally, if you have the content to upload today, you have it to upload tomorrow. I doubt that a free file sharing site is your only storage location for your valuable files.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
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    JMT (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 1:41pm

    Re: FTFY

    If Flickr really wanted to "benefit the whole Flickr community" they would add the words "...and the false DMCA claim will be reported to the relevant authorities" to the end of their statement.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
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    Tommy, Jun 13th, 2012 @ 2:32pm

    It's about time that they pulled their heads out of their arses! I deleted my Flicker account as a result of what happened, and wrote them an e-mail to them stating why.I went elsewhere with my photos.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
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    Ophelia Millais (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 4:55pm

    Re: Re: FTFY

    The authorities? There's no legal remedy for DMCA takedown notices that are made "in good faith" but that turn out to be false. There are no "authorities" to report them to. It's not a criminal matter. Now, if you think you could convince a court that the accuser knew the claim was false at the outset, you could sue them, but since you probably weren't financially harmed by the takedown, all you'd get is attorney's fees, if you win. If you lose, you pay their fees.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 6:23pm

    Re: Re: Megaupload

    Unless your other backup fails and the DoJ steals your other backup.
    Just ask Kyle Goodwin.
    Just ask soldiers who were trading pictures and videos with family using the site.

    People assumed, maybe incorrectly, that their files were safe going across Mega... and they were until the DoJ went crazy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
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    Spaceman Spiff (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 6:38pm

    What's really amazing

    is that they decided to do this in any case! As someone once said, "better late than never"!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    JMT (profile), Jun 13th, 2012 @ 6:51pm

    Re: Re: Re: FTFY

    I know it's wishful thinking, but it'd be nice if there was some form of meaningful threat Flickr (and others could make) against false DMCA claims, even if it's just publishing the notices.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
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    Dominic Sayers (profile), Jun 14th, 2012 @ 4:10am

    This just affects non-US users of Flickr

    For US users, Flickr has always restored the picture as it was.

    This crazy policy has only affected non-US users. It was first raised 3 years ago, but Flickr refused to change their policy until a well-known journalist and a celeb got involved and started creating bad publicity for them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    bob, Jun 14th, 2012 @ 6:48am

    "Not all DMCA takedowns are legit"? What kind of FUD is this shit? You think rightsholders don't have enough hoops to jump through already? You filthy pirates don't even have any hoops to jump through; you either show up and pay up, or you're guilty and you pay up.

    If I had my way I'd sic John Steele over all of you so hard you'd beg for SOPA.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 14th, 2012 @ 11:40am

    Man when I was in real estate I had several blogs and started using flicker to post images I created. I also took pictures of homes and for seo purposes only tagged them etc. Absolutely nothing was for sale on flickr for obvious reasons. Then one day my blogs are completely ruined. they deleted my entire account for violating tos. Only a tiny fraction even slightly did so nor did they give me a chance to remove the offending pictures. Meanwhile there are hundreds if not thousands of photographers who use the site who can indirectly sell photos using that site...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 14th, 2012 @ 6:19pm

    The cost of doing the "right thing" is now less than the damage being done to them.

    When they threaten to sue you out of business for not jumping fast or soon enough, look at the Google lawsuits, you do the quickest fastest route. When that route starts costing you more business, you look at what the law actually says and modify your practices to follow those.

    Yahoo! is sorta circling the drain, so keeping Flickr going is an effort they need to make.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
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    Niall (profile), Jun 19th, 2012 @ 9:16am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: FTFY

    How about: Your next 'genuine' DMCA letter gets thrown straight in the bin?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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