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Facebook Privacy Notice


Claim:   Posting a legal notice on your Facebook wall will protect your copyright and privacy rights.

FALSE

Examples:

[Collected via Facebook, May 2012]

For those of you that do not understand this posting, Facebook is now a publicly traded entity. Anyone can infringe on your right to privacy once you post on this site. It is recommended that you and other members post a similar notice to this or you may copy and paste this one. Protect yourself, this is now a publicly traded site.

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PRIVACY NOTICE: Warning - any person and/or institution and/or Agent and/or Agency of any governmental structure including but not limited to the United States Federal Government also using or monitoring/using this website or any of its associated websites, you do NOT have my permission to utilize any of my profile information nor any of the content contained herein including, but not limited to my photos, and/or the comments made about my photos or any other "picture" art posted on my profile. You are hereby notified that you are strictly prohibited from disclosing, copying, distributing, disseminating, or taking any other action against me with regard to this profile and the contents herein. The foregoing prohibitions also apply to your employee, agent, student or any personnel under your direction or control.

The contents of this profile are private and legally privileged and confidential information, and the violation of my personal privacy is punishable by law.

UCC 1-103 1-308 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.
 

[Collected via Facebook, November 2012]

In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, comics, paintings, photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention).

For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times!

(Anyone reading this can copy this text and paste it on their Facebook Wall. This will place them under protection of copyright laws, By the present communiqué, I notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents. The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents and/or any staff under Facebook's direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punished by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).

Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are recommended to publish a notice like this, or if you prefer, you may copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, you will be tacitly allowing the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in your profile status updates
 

[Collected via Facebook, June 2013]

On June 24, 2013, by making full use of my mental faculties and my ownership of this account in Facebook, I declare, to whom it may concern, and in particular to the administrator of the company Facebook, my author rights which are related to all my personal information, comments, texts, articles, illustrations, comics, paintings, photos, professional videos and other publications in electronic format that I spread on this site under my signature. The above on the basis of the principle enshrined in the Berne Convention for the protection of literary and artistic works, as well as with regard to the respective national copyright law. For commercial use of the aforementioned items, always must be by my written consent. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents. These prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents or members of any team, under the direction or control of Facebook. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308 - 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). Note: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. Do not share; copy and paste
 

[Collected via e-mail, October 2013]

Channel 13 News was just talking about this change in Facebook's privacy policy. Better safe than sorry. As of October 14, 2013 at 5:50pm Eastern standard time, I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, or posts, both past and future. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308- 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). NOTE: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. DO NOT SHARE. You MUST copy and Paste
 

Origins:   Messages about protecting your copyright or privacy rights on Facebook by posting a particular legal notice to your Facebook wall are similar to an item which circulated several years ago positing that posting a similar notice on a web site would protect that site's operators from prosecution for piracy. In both cases the claims were erroneous, an expression of the mistaken belief that the use of some simple legal talisman — knowing enough to ask the right question or post a pertinent disclaimer — will immunize one from some undesirable
legal consequence. The law just doesn't work that way.

Facebook users cannot retroactively negate any of the privacy or copyright terms they agreed to when they signed up for their accounts, nor can they unilaterally alter or contradict any new privacy or copyright terms instituted by Facebook, simply by posting a contrary legal notice on their Facebook walls. Moreover, the fact that Facebook is now a publicly traded company (i.e., a company that has issued stocks which are traded on the open market) or an "open capital entity" has nothing to do with copyright protection or privacy rights. Any copyright or privacy agreements users of Facebook have entered into with that company prior to its becoming a publicly traded company or changing its policies remain in effect: they are neither diminished nor enhanced by Facebook's public status.

Further, the concerns about copyright ownership which these types of notices are intended to address are unfounded. In response to rumors about copyright issues that began circulating in November 2012 after Facebook announced the company was considering revoking users' rights to vote on proposed policy changes, Facebook issued a statement noting:
There is a rumor circulating that Facebook is making a change related to ownership of users' information or the content they post to the site. This is false. Anyone who uses Facebook owns and controls the content and information they post, as stated in our terms. They control how that content and information is shared. That is our policy, and it always has been. Click here to learn more - www.facebook.com/policies.
Similarly, ABC News reported:
[Users worried that] Facebook will own their photos or other media are posting [a frightful message] — unaware that it is a hoax. Here's the truth: Facebook doesn't own your media.

"We have noticed some statements that suggest otherwise and we wanted to take a moment to remind you of the facts — when you post things like photos to Facebook, we do not own them," Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes said in a statement. "Under our terms you grant Facebook permission to use, distribute, and share the things you post, subject to the terms and applicable privacy settings."

Brad Shear, a Washington-area attorney and blogger who is an expert on social media, said the message [that Facebook users are posting to their walls is] "misleading and not true." He said that when you agree to Facebook's terms of use you provide Facebook a "non-exclusive, transferable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any content you post. You do not need to make any declarations about copyright issues since the law already protects you. The privacy declaration [in this message] is worthless and does not mean anything."
As techtalk noted of Facebook users' current privacy rights:
The fact is that Facebook members own the intellectual property (IP) that is uploaded to the social network, but depending on their privacy and applications settings, users grant the social network "a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License)."

Facebook adds, "[t]his IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it."

While the social network does not technically own its members content, it has the right to use anything that is not protected with Facebook's privacy and applications settings. For instance, photos, videos and status updates set to public are fair game.
Before you can use Facebook, you must indicate your acceptance of that social network's legal terms, which includes its privacy policy and its terms and policies. You cannot alter your acceptance of that agreement, nor can you restrict the rights of entities who are not parties to that agreement, simply by posting a notice to your Facebook account or citing the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) or the Berne Convention. (One of the common legal talismans referenced above is UCC Section 1-308, which has long been popular among conspiracy buffs who incorrectly maintain that citing it above your signature on an instrument will confer upon you the ability to invoke extraordinary legal rights.)

If you do not agree with Facebook's stated policies, you have several options:
  • Decline to sign up for a Facebook account.
  • Bilaterally negotiate a modified policy with Facebook.
  • Lobby for Facebook to amend its policies through its Facebook Site Governance section.

  • Cancel your Facebook account.
(Note that in the last case, you may have already ceded some rights which you cannot necessarily reclaim by canceling your account.)

Last updated:   1 September 2014

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Sources:

    Ngak, Chenda.   "Viral "Facebook Privacy Notice" Is a Hoax."
    CBSNews.com.   5 June 2012.

    Stern, Joanna.   "Ignore the 'Copyright' Facebook Post."
    ABC News.   26 November 2012.

    Sydiongco, David.   "Don't Bother Posting the 'Facebook Privacy Notice' That's Spreading Around."
    Slate.   5 June 2012.