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I have a childminding facebook group, which is a closed group and someone has printed off pictures when they are not part of it

Usk, WA |

I have permission from my parents to post pictures on the page, however I have discovered that someone who is harrassing my family has printed off pictures of my husband with the children, is this legal

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

Making unauthorized copies of your photographs would be a copyright infringement, but you probably won't be able to find an attorney to bring an action unless you registered the copyrights in those images with the Copyright Office before they were infringed. As to the harassment elements, that is something you may wish to speak about with an attorney - without knowing all of the facts about how the photos are being used and what is being done to harass your family, there isn't much we can do to answer your question.

Obviously, this isn't the proper place to post those details - just as you didn't want someone taking and reproducing your family photos without your permission, I doubt you want these personal details out on the internet where anyone can find and copy or link them.

No information you obtain from this answer is legal advice, nor is it intended to be. You should consult an attorney for individualized advice regarding your situation. No attorney-client relationship is formed by my responding to your question.

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Asker

Posted

Wish the police would take the harrassement seriously, been going on for 2 years now, the photos are of my business and my husband playing with the children that I look after, and the group on facebook is a closed group, so she was not allowed access to that group

Posted

It depends on exactly what you mean by legal. Printing pictures off the internet may not be legal, but it also may. It depends on exactly what they did with them and whether they had to breach some sort of agreement to get at them.
And harassing people is rarely legal, regardless of anything else.

Answers and information provided here does not create an attorney/client relationship.

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Posted

Wish the police would take the harrassement seriously, been going on for 2 years now, the photos are of my business and my husband playing with the children that I look after, and the group on facebook is a closed group, so she was not allowed access to that group

John E. Whitaker

John E. Whitaker

Posted

If you want to use the legal system to stop it, do this: Take several really nice pictures that you think this person would download and reproduce; immediately file a copyright registration on all of those pictures (about $40); then upload all those pictures to the facebook group. Assuming this person then does in fact download the new pictures, you have an enormously strong case for statutory damages and attorneys fees. That kind of financial exposure is usually fairly crippling. If you want to discuss the details and pitfalls of this strategy, feel free to give me a quick call. Like others, I provide a free initial consultation.

Bruce E. Burdick

Bruce E. Burdick

Posted

The registration bait and sting ploy. Like it John. To borrow Gerry Elman's sm , that's strategic lawyering.

Posted

Unless you can articulate some injury here, I suggest you pick your battles. There is nothing illegal about printing a picture off the internet. The bigger question, as noted, will be how they used that material exactly?

Further, it sounds as if you are not even the copyright owner of any of this material but rather those that provided the pictures to you would be.

Also, even where some technical infringement occurs if it is so de minimus (which is likley the case here) it will not arise to a cause of action and even if you could afford to bring this matter to court it would be a huge waste of your time, energy and of yes a whole lot of your money.

If you require further clarification, most of us here, including myself, offer a free phone consult.

Best regards,
Frank
Natoli-Lapin, LLC
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The law firm of Natoli-Lapin, LLC (Home of Lantern Legal Services) offers our flat-rate legal services in the areas of business law and intellectual property to entrepreneurs, small-to-medium size businesses, independent inventors and artists across the nation and abroad. Feel free to call for a free phone consultation; your inquiries are always welcome: CONTACT: 866-871-8655 Support@LanternLegal.com DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed on the basis of this posting.

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Posted

Wish the police would take the harrassement seriously, been going on for 2 years now, the photos are of my business and my husband playing with the children that I look after, and the group on facebook is a closed group, so she was not allowed access to that group

Frank A. Natoli

Frank A. Natoli

Posted

Yes, but so what? What harassment? What did she do with the photos? You understand what I'm asking here? What exactly is the problem you are complaining of? You are also free to file a civil claim for harassment in your state's small claims court so long as the defendent is also a state resident (as is the rule in most states, not sure about WA).

Bruce E. Burdick

Bruce E. Burdick

Posted

there's nothing illegal about printing a copy of an image off the Internet.? Really? So i can copy all of Getty Images copyrighted stock photos without permission without violating their exclusive right under 17 USC 106 to copy?

Frank A. Natoli

Frank A. Natoli

Posted

Don't be ridiculous. A family friend just had a baby and posted some great pictures online. My wife printed one out and it hangs on our fridge. Are you telling me that was "illegal" Bruce? Does our friend now have a cause of action? Everything in context buddy...

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