Twitter and Youtube appear to have banned the sharing of images of people in public settings

Twitter and Youtube appear to have banned the sharing of images of people in public settings

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Twitter appears to ban the posting of photos that show anyone else for whom you do not have documented permission.

Last week, Youtube announced that any person appearing in your videos must provide a signed permission declaration to you.

This appears to ban the sharing of innocent vacation photos that may show others in the background. It also bans posting of photos of your kids marching in a public parade (in public!)

Not sure where this is going but – seems to shut down posting of many photos and video online, if this is widely adopted.

Here is the text from Twitter, describing their new policy:

Sharing private media
When we are notified by individuals depicted, or by an authorized representative, that they did not consent to having their private image or video shared, we will remove it. This policy is not applicable to media featuring public figures or individuals when media and accompanying Tweet text are shared in the public interest or add value to public discourse.

However, if the purpose of the dissemination of private images of public figures or individuals who are part of public conversations is to harass, intimidate, or use fear to silence them, we may remove the content in line with our policy against abusive behavior.. Similarly, private nude images of public individuals will continue to be actioned under our non-consensual nudity policy.

We recognize that there are instances where account holders may share images or videos of private individuals in an effort to help someone involved in a crisis situation, such as in the aftermath of a violent event, or as part of a newsworthy event due to public interest value, and this might outweigh the safety risks to a person.

They have not defined “media” – is “social media” a “media”? Or are only well established, existing “main stream media” considered media?

The 2nd paragraph implies this restriction is only against use of imagery as a form of harassment.

But the 3rd paragraph implies this is a general prohibition on public images.

They try to offer explanations of what is okay or not. But seems to suggest that photographing and posting photos of a public protest event may be a violation – unless it is done by “journalists”. Define journalist? Does a journalist have more rights than a member of the public?

As others note, their new policy appears to prohibit someone from posting photos of such things as the January 6th protest/assault on the Capitol – and would prohibit the FBI from then having access to such photos in their investigations. It would also prohibit sharing photos of a violent protest on the streets of Portland – unless you are a “journalist” (which is not defined).

It seems the only thing permitted may be cat photos – but be sure to have written permission from the cat, okay?

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