One of the most underhanded tactics sweeping the online and publishing world is the hijacking of photo rights through inequitable terms buried in the fine print of legalese for contests and web sites. The perpetrators will no doubt surprise you, they include the likes of Facebook, National Geographic + PDN, Popular Photo, and more.
This issue is not a new one and has reared its ugly head in the past on other photo sharing sites, but now this tactic is becoming increasingly common with major players. Offending words such as perpetual, royalty-free license and irrevocable are being introduced to hijack the rights to photographs of well intended photographers looking to play the odds to have their work recognized in a contest or just to simply share with friends.
So what does this mean? It means companies, that used to pay for quality photography to fill the pages of their publications, are now taking advantage of well intentioned photographers to develop royalty-free photo libraries they now can tap to fill the pages of their publication or place in promotional advertisements.