As the Internet focuses on Social Media, photographs become increasingly important. Facebook, Twitter and Google+ posts share better with great photographs. Unlike video or text, photographs are immediate, beautiful and engaging. Unfortunately there are ownership issues surrounding photographs on social media that every photographer, marketing manager or business should be aware of.
The issues related to copyrights are clearly listed in the Terms of Service agreements on every social media site. Buried in these lengthy, complex agreements are terms that are designed to protect the social media site. Each agreement is a little different and they are updated and changed periodically.
On most Social Media sites when materials with intellectual property rights like photographs are posted the poster is granting a non-exclusive sub-license of the photograph to the social media site. The sub-license is free and it allows other users of the site and the social media site itself to turn around and then use or license the photo for free or for profit. The photographer (or owner of the exclusive license) retains ownership of the photograph but only in a non-excusive capacity once it is posted.
Why do these sub-licenses matter?
From a professional photographer’s perspective by posting a photo on a social media site they are basically removing the ability to ever sell the exclusive right to the photograph down the road. Should the photographer’s work ever become valuable both the social media site and any other entity that has acquired the photograph through the site can use it as they see fit for profit without owing royalties to the photographer. In the case of Google+ this license if forever, called an “irrevocable” license.
Here is the TOS for Google+
“By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services.
You agree that this license includes a right for Google to make such Content available to other companies, organizations or individuals with whom Google has relationships for the provision of syndicated services, and to use such Content in connection with the provision of those services.
You understand that Google, in performing the required technical steps to provide the Services to our users, may (a) transmit or distribute your Content over various public networks and in various media; and (b) make such changes to your Content as are necessary to conform and adapt that Content to the technical requirements of connecting networks, devices, services or media. You agree that this license shall permit Google to take these actions.”
Google+’s user agreement is the most extensive of all the social media sites in that it is irrevocable. The forever nature of the license means that under no circumstances can the poster of the photographer ever recover exclusive rights to the photograph.
Amazing Google went nearly 5 months without updating it’s visual page rank. Then they did a release on June 27th 2011, then updated that update around July 20th 2011 to take corrective actions as they apparently messed up and provided twitter with a PR0 and this caused all worldwide page rank to be off. Now August 4th 2011 I am seeing another Page Rank Update.
It would be really interesting if Google started providing Page Rank Updates monthly?
I think generally people have become somewhat disenchanted with Google Page Rank, and there are so many more reliable ways to determine the overall value of a website these days, but many people hang their hat on what their Page Rank is….
Well lets see what the BIG G has in store for all of us.
In addition to bringing you the most relevant results, search engines are many times fighting over presenting the most up-to-date pages to the searcher. That’s why Google has those time-related filters in the left, just below the “type” filters. Although recent content might be well of importance only to news-seekers, Google thinks otherwise. Long before the recent “Panda” update to its indexing algorithm that is being talked about all over the world in during last week, Google has made numerous adjustments to its ranking rationale, with frequently updated websites getting “bonuses” in SE placements.
Yet another step in the same direction was done several days ago, although no official announcement has been made. It seems, Twitter is getting more credit within Google, which has decided to present recent tweets in the search results. In addition, the results also show user’s picture. But more important is the fact that the link is the tweet is included in the SERP’s, making it a valuable inbound link for the featured website.
It has to be noted, that the above only applies to recently posted tweets (the exact amount of time could not be determined, but from my testing it is probably several hours, and after that the results return to the usual “join twitter to follow”. If you want to see those results, by the way, it is very advisable to include the word “Twitter” in your search query.
Growing rapidly, with about 200 million registered users and estimated to surpass the 15 million adult users in the US in 2011, Twitter has proved as a very successful venture in the past 3 years. Based on acquisition offers, the company value has increased from $3.7 billion in 2009 to about $10 billion in the closing months of 2010. Yet, the owners are probably not going to sell it any time soon.
Instead, they want to turn Twitter into more profitable website. And the best way to ear money for an internet website is, of course, advertising. Currently, there are three options for advertising on Twitter – Promoted Tweets (that look like normal tweets, but are said to reach not only your followers but a significantly larger crowd), Promoted Trends (advertising at the Twitter home page) and Promoted Accounts (Twitter recommends certain accounts as “worth to follow”).
The problem, however, is that every potential advertiser has to submit an advertising request, which is then reviews by the Twitter staff and is either approved or not approved. The approval process is manual and, as a result very slow. Many small- and medium-sized businesses simply give up, unwilling to wait, and turn to other advertising options – such as Google Adwords and Facebook Ads.
Although Twitter is not going to remodel the advertising scheme completely, it is done the first step, reportedly increasing the “advertising team” to assize of 35 workers (a notable 10% of the company personnel). Their primary task will be to improve response times and also to contact potential advertisers – those who had previously expressed interest in using Twitter in their campaigns.
The battle between FaceBook and Google mightbe overrated, but in terms of innovation, both companies are definitely doing their best. In the “50 Most Innovative Companies of 2011” list, published by Fastcompany Magazine, Facebook, the leader in 2010 is placed third (“For 600 million users, despite Hollywood”).
Notably, one place ahead of the world’s largest social network is the micro-blogging website Twitter (“For five years of explosive growth that have redefined communication”). 200 million users mark is certainly not far away.
At the very top, placed first, is Apple (“For dominating the business landscape, in 101 ways”). iPad is probably the reason they went two places up from last-years third position.
And what about Google? And Microsoft? Don’t worry, both are there. Google is sixth (“For instantly upgrading the search experience”) – one place behind Groupon (5), whose courage is also admitted (“For reinvigorating retail — and turning down $6 billion”). Microsoft is only 37th – but still 9 places up from last year. Bing, and Win Phone OS 7 are both noted as good products, but it is the hand-free Kinect that impressed Fastcompany, “turning the human body into a game controller”.
Another notable inclusion is LinkedIn (“For turning 90 million members into the world’s most useful career database”) and Russian search engine Yandex (26) that is given credit for successfully battling Google in the Russian search market niche and for various complex algorithms. The list, of course, includes off-line companies, such as Nissan(4, “For creating the Leaf, the first mass- market all- electric car”), Trader Joe’s (11, for “For vaulting past Whole Foods to become America’s favorite organic grocer) and Snohetta (35, “For design that’s both social and beautiful”).
Twitter has been here for over five years, but it has become a real “hit” only recently. During the last Superbowl game, a new record for number of over 4000 tweets-per-second was recorded, emphasizing the usefulness of this tool when you want to share your thoughts/impressions/ideas/anything else quickly.
But maybe the founders/owners of twitter have finally decided to make some serious profit from the almost-two-hundred-million registered users? According to some unofficial reports, Twitter had talks with both Google and FaceBook about a potential deal – that is the buyout of Twitter, of course.
While the talks are, reportedly, in the very early stages and seem more like a “what-if” scenario for Twitter, the figures mentioned show that the micro-blogging site’s value went up considerably. It is now estimated about $10 billion, opposed to about $3.7 billion figure, reported about a year ago.
An interesting is that the two “potential buyers” are Google and Facebook. Not Yahoo, not Microsoft… With Google being a runaway leader in the search industry niche and FaceBook establishing itself as an undisputed number one social media , blogging (and micro-blogging) seems like a field that neither of the two has a real advantage. So, will Twitter serve as a neutral ground for a decisive encounter between the two giants? I guess it will take several months, and maybe years until we get a conclusive answer to this question…
Woke up this morning thinking further about my statement yesterday that Microsoft should by Twitter. I really think that if Google does not buy Twitter and it lands in the hands of Microsoft, it could potentially become a great equalizer. Bing’s real time search results would be exclusive and therefore at the very least very different from Google. Bing needs to do something, it is sort of floundering as many companies do when they are not really committed to being the best.
On the other hand if Facebook buys Twitter, Google has a much bigger problem, potential elimination from real time search. Facebook is the number one visited website in the world. Now this is great, but their problem is, their visitors are not interested in buying anything, they do not click on ads, they do not convert into $$, and this is becoming a problem for the future of Facebook. It is sort of the old school internet business model on steroids: build it,make it cool and free, get traffic, and with traffic all your problems will be solved. Now if your roll Twitter into Facebook, you do not get any better profit generation, but now you hold all the cards in real time search. Facebook could place extraordinary value on this real time data, and begin to charge search engines massive amounts of fees to access their websites and data. If the search engines do not agree to pay these outrageous fees, then Facebook can begin to build their own search engine. Even if their algorithm was not very robust to begin, with having the real time data from Facebook and Twitter would insure that they provide phenomenal real time information (that would not be found anywhere else) and can use this real-time data VERY effectively. It is a fact that no one is really Tweeting or Facebooking about the spamming Viagra website they found on page one of Google, nor the insurance website they found in BING. Therefore Facebook would be able to quickly put a serious reduction on spam, create a place in search, and provide themselves with very bright future for profitability and a serious chunk of what Google and BING currently have.
As an internet marketing professional, I really do not care who does what. I do not own the game, just play by the rules set forth by people far smarter and wealthier than I. I must say though, I really like Twitter in the hands of Facebook or Microsoft. Lets see what Google is really made of….
I was in the shower this morning, considering the impact that Twitter and Facebook have had on Google’s search results. After reading Rands test results from Twitter links versus traditional text links in ranking pages within the Google search results, it is clear that Google is placing significant weight on links from Twitter and Facebook. Based upon this information, one would assume that if Facebook and Twitter no longer permitted Google-bot access their websites, Google’s algorithm would have to be seriously adjusted. It would probably end up in pushing Google search results to displaying only yesterday’s news and information, instead of real-time search results currently based upon the linking patterns Google-bot gets from Twitter and Facebook.
I was just reading a blog post on searchengineland about Twitter being acquired by someone, whether it be Google, Microsoft or Facebook. I find this concept interesting: Whomever buys Twitter will have the most updated real-time content online. I believe that the acquisition of Twitter must be made by Microsoft. This would give Microsoft its first leg up on Google in search. Microsoft could probably license the access to Twitter to Google for hundreds of millions of dollars.
The facts are quite simple that without Twitter and Facebook links, Google’s sort of screwed. Unfortunately Google’s recent behavior has created a bit of industry anger towards its online business practices. I think this is why Groupon did not sell to Google.
I wanted to mention that this blog post was written with the assistance of NaturallySpeaking by Dragon. If you have hesitated in using speech-recognition software, I would say now is the time to give it a try. I think that using this software will make it much easier for me to blog from this point forward.
While I’m getting NaturallySpeaking a plug, I may as well mention the really really cool viral marketing tool they’ve built on their website. It’s called Fingers of Fire.
Twitter has mad a strong progress in the recent years. It has been a useful tool both for fun and, of course, business. Respectable companies are tweeting, telling their followers about company news, promotions etc. It is only a matter of time for world’s most popular the micro-blogging platform to reach 200M registered users – the current figure being about 175 Million. People are sharing their thought and ideas using Twitter at astonishing rate, reportedly over 65M tweets per day.
Notably, according to recent research, only 50% of the tweets are in English. It seems that Twitter decided to carry on its success in the Asian market as Japanese is the second popular tweeting language and Malay is fourth with Portuguese being third due to the tool’s extreme popularity in Brazil. However, instead of addressing the challenging Chinese market, Twitter skippers have picked Korean as the seventh supported language (don’t confuse with the messages language, which can be almost anything, form Tamil to Hebrew and Arabic) in addition to the existing English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, and Japanese.
The decision is based on the amazing growth rate of South Korean Twitter users (almost ten times in 2010) and the country being relatively advanced in technological terms. The relevant iPhone app and Twitter mobile for Android in Korean have also been launched, making tweeting easier for the South Koreans.
The global village and the internet era is everywhere. Long gone are the times when Church opposed science– Vatican itself is happy to use the most advanced technology in the world. And internet is no exception, it seems. In his latest statement, the Pope has shown good familiarity with social networks and their popularity among teenagers, pointing out pros and cons of digital communication.
Pope Benedictus XVI praised the prospects offered by the new technology saying that “if used wisely, they can contribute to the satisfaction of the desire for meaning, truth and unity which remain the most profound aspirations of each human being”, and emphasized that digital communication is a form of sharing.
His Holiness also warned about misleading by creating a “fake” personality in quest for “followers” and “friends” and stated that “there is the challenge to be authentic and faithful”. The Pope invited the Christians to join the global network as relationship is the fundamental need of a human being, and concluded his address with Apostolic blessing to all those that “make good use of their presence in the digital world”.