Internet lawyer Arnoud Engelfriet says “Limit copyright on images”


Engelfriet writes on his blog:

An [Internet trend] I had not seen before, Pinterest, is a service that lets you publicly bookmark images, a sort of virtual notice board. […] Is this legal, can anybody just make a collection of images from everywhere without the rights holders’ permission?

No, this is not legal. […] If I were older and more cynical, I would now announce the bankruptcy of copyright law for images. Everybody, and I mean everybody, thinks it is normal that you take images off Google for your mood boards, blogs, and Facebook accounts. And this is happening on a grand scale. The uploaders are difficult to track, middlemen are not accountable, and notice-and-take-downs are a lost battle.

[…] If half of the country breaks the law, it is time to start wondering if the law should not be changed.

In the comments Engelfriet (who incidentally has helped us in the past and who regularly comments here too) gives several examples of road rules that have been adapted following civil disobedience: on one hand, cyclists can now turn right on a red light in certain situations, but on the other, they are still obliged to use bike lights when it’s dark outside. Compliance with the latter rule has, however, been increased with safety campaigns and stricter policing.


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