Hey You!….Did You read our "Terms and Conditions"?….Didn’t Think So

(please note that the lack of fan-fare is intentional…Copyright protection seems to be everything..Read on..Daniel)

Welcome all to another thought provoking session hoping to leave you, the reader, “Something To Think About…”®. Social Media (So-Med®) is the arena which many of us use to interact, to promote (sometimes shamelessly), to share new tips and information on the horizon of exciting stuff, AND what’s even more awesome than all of that: Spread the news of original or exciting new programs that will enhance our business and reputation (those ones that I need to list under "Must Use").

The interesting thing about all these new programs or aids in the So-Med®circles is that a lot of people sign up without reading all of the fine print. Would the person(s) who actually read all the legalese, please stand up and shout "Hooray" (insert cricket noise here). I’m sure we all have the best of intentions when signing up, and we have every intention of using all the programs to their fullest potential, keeping in mind copyright restrictions and the fact that all our thoughts may not actually be the property of the thinker (after all, in all the world, covering all time, space and dimensions; I’m sure someone has had my next thought before…). Pat Pending1 once suggested that ‘For every original thought or idea in this world; there are numerous duplicates, all valid and equally distinct’.

Whenever we sign up for "The Next Big Thing" there always seems to be that little box marked Terms and Conditions, along with a line about having read and completely understood what they cover. Many just check the box, anxious to move on and set up their shiny new account, without realizing completely what they are signing. I know on a number of fronts, I’m guilty of that too; but realize that the fine print is there for only one reason, and that is to protect the makers of the program or So-Med® site from libel or misuse of their proprietary technology. A lot of large words, in simple speak, the author of the program or social-site is looking to protect their interest from being sued if it is discovered that shady practices have happened without their knowledge, which copyright holders believe to be misleading or untrue. Check and protect your rights, and as stated in my previous blog, If it isn’t your property or it sounds too good to be legal official; watch your back and in turn, your bank account.

A couple of weeks ago (case in point), my friend The Radical Recruit (Geoff Webb) posted his usual Friday report from vacation in Mexico; only to have Youtube a major video sharing service reject it on the grounds that some ones rights/ creative content was being violated. Knowing Geoff, nothing could have been further from the truth, and if anything, he was trying to give a little “love-traction”® to a particular musical artist. Too bad, who knows what another 2-10,000 views could have done for them; we’ll never know. Facebook has covered their bases, feel free to look through the fine print in review; and the same goes for every platform where the “goodwill” could be corrupted into something that the programmer had not intended.

Its really sad that we have become such a litigious society, and every move made comes under someone or another's scrutiny. “We did not intend for our site/program to be used in that manner…Take it up with (members name here)-> Here is their information for you Mr. Wronged Person, so sorry for the inconvenience…(right!). Make sure your ducks are in a row, and that content being used by you in promotions or posts is something fit for public conception (spelt: public domain) before someone is knocking on your door. Believe me when I suggest that those with the biggest reputations end up being a little less shiny (a reputation) after being reviewed for "creative content" and lose.

This is meant as a general "what if" blog, the kind of hypothetical approach that I, as the “devils advocate” has been known to start. I like conversation, spice it up with a little controversy and watch the opinions fly. Please, would all the experts rise, and explain how best intentions could be looked upon as profiteering in the philosophical sense of the word. For once, I’m all out.

Until Next time, Pinterestingly enough (check the fine print there too, folks before posting)

The Sourcers’ Apprentice®

The Daniel J. Smith

©2012 thedanieljsmith (ask before quoting…just kidding….or am I?)

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