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Are Facebook Posts Copyrighted? Here’s What You Need to Know

Person Making a Facebook Post

Are Facebook Posts Copyrighted? Everything you create, whether it’s something as small as a doodle on the edge of a napkin or graffiti painted on the wall (if it does not come under vandalism!), is protected by the author’s right.

More commonly known as copyright, it is a legal term that lets you protect your work from redistribution without credits.

This begs the question, are Facebook posts copyrighted? Keep reading to find out!

How Do I Know Which Works I Own?

Sometimes understanding which works you own can be difficult to understand. In simpler terms, you have complete ownership and copyright claims over any original content you have created yourself.

This may not include:

  1. Any work you have done as an employer for your job. Your employing company could hold credits for it.
  2. Any media that you make an appearance in.
  3. Any subject, whether it is a specific landmark or a sculpture. It could be part of the public domain and open for anyone to use in their works.

Can I Post Someone Else’s Work on Facebook?

Unfortunately, that is also protected under the legal system.

You cannot post or share any artist’s work on Facebook without their express permission or obtaining a license for it.

Facebook has a very strict policy against copyright and can take down your posts or give harsher penalties. Repeated violation of such policies can lead to your account being permanently banned.

Even if you add a note before sharing the content saying “no copyright infringement intended” or that you do not wish to monetize the post, it still may not be enough to save you from a copyright claim made against you.

Are My Facebook Posts Copyrighted?

When you write a post on Facebook in response to “What’s on your mind?”, that falls under the category of original work. This means that you own all the exclusive rights to that content, including copyright and trademark.

Now, you’re probably wondering how it can’t possibly be that easy to have your work reach such a wide audience without having any obvious setbacks. You’re right; that is because it’s not.

According to the terms and conditions of Facebook,

Copyright Terms of Facebook

This means that you may own the work that you post on Facebook. Still, Facebook has acquired the license to use the content however they wish, or transfer that right to anyone to use it anytime and any way they want to without your approval.

Also read: How to Remove Copyright Claim on Facebook

What Should I Do If I Don’t Want Facebook Licensing My Work?

Unfortunately, there’s no way around this. The only way to deal with this is not to post any work of yours on Facebook or to remove it if you already have.

This agreement ends if you remove your post from Facebook or delete your account. However, sometimes that still may not be enough. Facebook states that this rule does not apply “if the work has been shared with others and they have not deleted it.” If your work was ever saved by someone and they did not erase it from their end, Facebook still legally holds the license to use that content.

What Should I Do If Someone Has Copyrighted My Work On Facebook?

Facebook has laws to protect your content from copyright. If you post something publicly, everyone will have access to it and share your original post, garnering many views.

The downside to this is that they can save your media or copy your writings and post it on their own profiles, effectively making your work look like theirs.

You have to keep a strict check on whether anyone is appropriating your work yourself. If you think someone has violated the copyright terms, you can report it on Facebook, file a complaint through DMCA, or contact the person who misused your content.

What Comes Under Public Domain?

Any writer’s works become a part of the public domain a certain time after their death. It ranges from a minimum of 50 to about more than 100 years.

You can freely reproduce, publish or share the writer’s work without worrying about copyright infringement.

To Post or Not to Post?

Although the copyrights may still belong to you, once you post something on Facebook, you can grant them a free license to use your content however they see fit, even for commercial use! If you wish to exercise full control of your works, it’s probably a better idea not to post them on Facebook!

Want more information? These articles may interest you.

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