Win Photo Contest and Lose Copyright (and More Rights Grabs)


Canon USA Hawaii and its co-sponsors: LavaNet, KRATER 96, and Nikkan San are sponsoring its “Annual Canon Amateur Photo Contest.”  Three winners will receive either a Canon EOS Rebel XS Kit, a Canon Powershot G11 Camera, or Canon Powershot SD1200IS Camera.  Unfortunately, the rules provide that:

I agree that the copyright to my photograph will be assigned to Canon U.S.A., Inc. in the event
it is selected as a winner in this contest.

“[you] agree that the copyright to [your] photograph will be assigned to Canon U.S.A., Inc. in the event it is selected as a winner in this contest.” is a website designed to let you “enjoy the excitement of multitude themed photo contests from the comfort of your own home.”  But the terms of using the website mean that you agree:

[to] grant Competico a perpetual, irrevocable, royalty free, worldwide license to use, publicly display, distribute, sublicense, modify and otherwise fully exploit any Multimedia file that you submit to Competico. Competico may do any or all of the foregoing for . . . services, products or advertising. . . . You understand that by using these services your Content will be publicly available to others and that has no obligation to prevent the unauthorized copying, dissemination, alternation or other use of your Content by others.

Similar things happen when you submit content to  Specifically, the Terms of Use provide:

By submitting Your Content to NowPublic, You automatically grant . . . NowPublic and its licensees an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, royalty-free, transferable, sublicensable and worldwide licence to reproduce, copy, publicly perform, publicly display, publish, reformat, translate, excerpt (in whole or in part), distribute, prepare derivative works (including collections) of, incorporate into other works and otherwise use and exploit Your Content in connection with the Site and NowPublic’s (and its successors’ and affiliates’) business, including, without limitation, for promoting, advertising and redistributing part or all of the Site and derivative works thereof in any media formats and through any media channels, and to grant and authorize sublicenses of the foregoing.

The Government of Canada and its Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC), a Crown Corporation, which operates the Locals Know website.  When you submit a photo to the website, you agree to the following:

By submitting any contribution to the Sites, including without limitation text, photos, graphics or video (“Content”), you agree to grant the Canadian Tourism Commission a worldwide, irrevocable, sub-licensable, non-exclusive license, to exploit your Content as the Canadian Tourism Commission sees fit, including without limitation, modifying it or adapting it. Without limiting the foregoing, you grant the Canadian Tourism Commission the right to publish, broadcast, display or distribute your Content by any means and in any media. You expressly waive, to the fullest extent permitted by law, any moral rights you have in respect of the Content and agree that no rights of attribution shall be enforced by you. You grant these rights free of charge.

Looks as though we’re off to another bad year of rights grabs!

Thanks to Joseph Holmes, Frank Fennema, John Goldsmith, and Damien Franco for submitting these topics.

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