Reading time: 3 minutes

Many businesses are turning to services online for advertising and marketing purposes. Some of the well known available are social media websites. For business owners who actively post on social media to promote their goods or services, it would be helpful to understand the terms of service of your use and how your ownership of your copyright material may be affected.

Ownership and Licensing

Most social media websites do not claim to own any of the copyright material you have posted. Through your use, however, you do provide the social media platform with extensive rights in the form of licensing provisions. Many social media platforms may actually have very similar rights as the copyright holder. This would include rights to:

  • transfer their licensing rights;
  • sub-licence the copyright material; and
  • use of the copyright material on a royalty-free basis.

You should check with the social media platform to determine the exact level of licensing rights you agree to. Ownership and licensing clauses are particularly important to businesses in the creative industries or businesses that share valuable intellectual property.

Transfer of Risk

Although many social media platforms have such a wide-reaching licence, they typically have very narrow terms when it comes to risk. Effectively this means that many social media websites disclaim all liability from the items you post on the website. Further, there are often clauses minimising the liability on the social media platform.

Governing Law and Jurisdiction

In most instances, online businesses take the necessary steps to draft business terms and conditions for their website. These terms and conditions should have the relevant clauses that note down the governing law and the jurisdiction that applies to each transaction. The governing law refers to the laws that will apply to the transaction. The jurisdiction refers to the court where a dispute may be heard if one were to arise. If there are no business terms and conditions, parties to an online transaction may need to fork out extra legal costs to simply determine the issues mentioned above. For many of the larger social media platforms, you will notice that the governing law and jurisdiction clauses refer to the State of California.

Public Use

It is important to be wary of the extent at which your copyright material is available and allowed to be used by others. The uses may be as broad as copying your copyright material or distributing or modifying your material. Of course, as a business, this may end up being beneficial to you as it can allow for the viral spread of your material.

***

If you’re a business that is operating and using social media platforms, make sure you understand their Terms of Service particularly when it comes to the use of your copyright material.

Questions? Get in touch. 

Webinars

How Franchisors Can Avoid Misleading and Deceptive Conduct

Wednesday 18 May | 11:00 - 11:45am

Online
Ensure your franchise is not accused of misleading and deceptive conduct. Register for our free webinar today.
Register Now

New Kid on the Blockchain: Understanding the Proposed Laws for Crypto, NFT and Blockchain Projects

Wednesday 25 May | 10:00 - 10:45am

Online
If you operate in the crypto space, ensure you understand the Federal Government’s proposed licensing and regulation changes. Register today for our free webinar.
Register Now

How to Expand Your Business Into a Franchise

Thursday 26 May | 11:00 - 11:45am

Online
Drive rapid growth in your business by turning it into a franchise. To learn how, join our free webinar. Register today.
Register Now

Day in Court: What Happens When Your Business Goes to Court

Thursday 2 June | 11:00 - 11:45am

Online
If your business is going to court, then you need to understand the process. Our free webinar will explain.
Register Now

How to Manage a Construction Dispute

Thursday 9 June | 11:00 - 11:45am

Online
Protect your construction firm from disputes. To understand how, join our free webinar.
Register Now

Startup Financing: Venture Debt 101

Thursday 23 June | 11:00 - 11:45am

Online
Learn how venture debt can help take your startup to the next level. Register for our free webinar today.
Register Now

About LegalVision: LegalVision is a commercial law firm that provides businesses with affordable and ongoing legal assistance through our industry-first membership.

By becoming a member, you'll have an experienced legal team ready to answer your questions, draft and review your contracts, and resolve your disputes. All the legal assistance your business needs, for a low monthly fee.

Learn more about our membership

Need Legal Help? Submit an Enquiry

If you would like to get in touch with our team and learn more about how our membership can help your business, fill out the form below.

Our Awards

  • 2020 Innovation Award 2020 Excellence in Technology & Innovation Finalist – Australasian Law Awards
  • 2020 Employer of Choice Award 2020 Employer of Choice Winner – Australasian Lawyer
  • 2020 Financial Times Award 2021 Fastest Growing Law Firm - Financial Times APAC 500
  • 2020 AFR Fast 100 List - Australian Financial Review
  • 2021 Law Firm of the Year Award 2021 Law Firm of the Year - Australasian Law Awards
  • 2019 Most Innovative Firm - Australasian Lawyer