News Agency Refuses to Pay for Photo on Twitpic

The news agency AFP (Agence France-Presse) is being sued in a US court to believe that by posting any photo in services like Twitter or Twitpic the author is giving up your copyright. The case specifically concerns the American photojournalist Daniel Morel , who earlier this year posted images made ​​in Haiti in the service of accommodation images Twitpic.

Later the pictures were copied and republished by an official of the AFP, also a photojournalist Lisandro Suero, and passed the news agency, which used the photos in a range of materials to sell them to newspapers around the world through licensing service Getty Images – always credited with the name of Suero.

After sending a series of emails to AFP demanding their rights (ie money), the surprise: the French giant said it was by entering into a “declaratory action” against Morel for “conducting commercial defamation” and “demanding a declaration of non-infringement.” In other words, an official apology with an assurance that it would not be bothered again.

Because? According to the news agency, in its Terms of Service, Twitter says “can share any material posted by its users with partners.” How has a profile on the site microblogging, the French company considers itself a “partner” of Twitter, which therefore gives the supreme right to freely use anything you find there.

While the case is being resolved in a court in the state of New York, the icing on the cake: the AFP announced that on Saturday, the 6th, which signed an agreement with the Spanish EFE to “fight the piracy of their information by some media”. The statement said:

“Both agencies will use common tools and technologies to detect those pirates who use improperly their content, in any format, and will be worth of legal experts for the joint defense of the intellectual property of their respective news (…) Efe and afp want to highlight by this agreement, the danger it poses to the credibility of the agencies and their future this fraudulent use of their information and the importance of credit protection.”

The present writer refrains from making any comment.