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Instagram Copyright Penalties – What to Expect?

Instagram copyright penalties

Instagram Copyright Penalties: Instagram is one of the most widely used social media platforms. Instagram’s copyright infringement happens when a person uses an original work of authorship without the owner’s permission. Now that people can share almost anything on social media, committing copyright infringement has become fairly easy. Nevertheless, Instagram copyright does come with a major set of consequences.

Copyright infringement on Instagram can make your photo or video be taken down. Moreover, the photo-sharing platform also has a Repeat Infringer Policy, and if you continue violating copyright owners’ exclusive rights or trademarks, Instagram might disable your account or remove your page.

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What is Copyright?

Copyright represents a set of exclusive rights every author gains automatically when they create original content. When it comes to Instagram, the content that can be copyrighted includes:

  • Visual and Audio-visual works: Paintings, photographs, video games, TV shows, movies, etc.
  • Written works: Magazine and newspaper articles, poems, novels, manuscripts, song lyrics, etc.
  • Audio works: Sound recordings, songs, speech recordings, etc.

In the majority of cases, if you take a picture for Instagram, you own the right to it. However, ownership matters might get complicated sometimes. Here are some situations you should know of:

  1. Being in the picture: It might be counterintuitive but don’t own the rights to an image just because you are in it. The rights generally belong to the person who took the photo.
  2. Taking a picture of the same subject: You can’t prevent others from taking similar pictures of the Empire State Buildings. However, you can prevent copies and reposts of your work.
  3. Taking pictures for someone else: If taking pictures comes under your duties, as mentioned in your employment contract, your employer will be the copyright owner.

What Comes Under Instagram Copyright Infringement?

Copyright infringement is the violation of the author’s exclusive rights. Most often, copyright infringement on Instagram means copying another person’s content or using it for financial purposes without proper authorization.

As copying or reposting another person’s creative work is quite easy on social media, many people do it without knowing about the potential consequences. Copyright infringement on Instagram might include the following:

  • Playing a copyrighted song.
  • Sharing videos with copyrighted music playing in the background.
  • Copying or reposting work by other people even if you give credit or add a disclaimer that you don’t intend to infringe on their rights.
  • Editing or modifying someone else work.
  • Posting content found anywhere else on the internet or on other social media platforms.

How to Steer Clear of Copyright Penalties on Instagram?

Copyright infringement on Instagram can get your profile suspended and lead to financial losses. Copyright owners take their rights quite seriously. Thus, it is important to keep the potential violations in mind. Here are some ways how to prevent copyright infringement on the photo-sharing platform:

  • Post content you have developed yourself or have licensed properly.
  • Get permission from the content creator before you post their work.
  • Share directly from the content creator’s Instagram account instead of copying and sharing.
  • Ensure use comes under the Fair Use Doctrine:
    • If you’re using content for commercial purposes, it won’t come under fair use.
    • Factual works such as maps databases might come under fair use.
    • Using minimal copyrighted work as needed is considered fair use.
    • Parody and commentary generally fall under fair use.

It can be tough to determine if fair use is applicable. However, such factors are essential considerations to help you make a decision. If you own a piece of work, have asked for permission, or use the platform’s own features to share posts, you will stay safe.

Repeat Copyright Infringement Policies

If copyright strikes become a common issue for your Instagram account, you will face more substantial penalties than a simple video takedown.

More specifically, Instagram’s copyright rules explain that repeat offenders might get their account disabled or their page removed. Instagram users whose accounts get disabled because of copyright infringement might never be able to reactivate their accounts.

In addition, even if repeat Instagram copyright offenders can keep their accounts, they might lose access to specific functionalities or features. However, even this penalty can end an influencer’s career who depends on Instagram deals for income.

Last Few Words

Copyright infringement might cause your content to be taken down. However, if you continue violating copyright owners’ exclusive rights or trademarks, your account or page might get disabled or removed altogether. Therefore, always make sure your content comes under the Fair Use Doctrine.