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Visit Jean Maneke's website at, you can also e-mail attorney Jean Maneke at, or call her at (816) 753-9000 with your questions or for help on open meetings/open records issues, advertising regulations and other legal matters. Consultation is free to active members, and Jean is always eager to help. Jean also has a blog that discusses violations of the Sunshine Law in Missouri and ways to keep the SUN SHINING on Missouri government.


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    April 4, 2014April column

How does copyright law affect content on Facebook?

Recognize limits of ‘fair use’ doctrine

Several callers to the Missouri Press Association hotline in recent weeks have raised questions about issues that probably impact many of you, so this month I want to touch on a couple of those. Then I’ll give you a tip I think will really benefit you when questions about these and a multitude of other matters come up each day.

Recently, a newspaper in the state was covering a homicide story. While searching for photos to gowith the story, it happened onto a photo on Facebook of one person involved in the incident. The paperstaff was puzzling over whether to use the photo in its coverage online and in its print edition. Could it legally use that photo? Other newspapers appeared to be using Facebook photos, the staff determined, but online resources left them questioning the legality of using those photos.

Questions like this raise layers of issues, particularly those related to copyright. We’ve discussed some of this before. You know that the first issue is who owns the copyright to the original photo and are there defenses, particularly “fair use,” that would permit you to use the photo? Knowing that it’s posted on Facebook, how does that impact this issue?

If you have information on a copyright holder of the photo, the “best practices” argument would be that... continued...



Online Store Feature

2014 MPA BOUND Newspaper Directory

An alphabetical resource guide to all of the newspapers in the state of Missouri. $45.00



Thursday April 17th

Have you checked out MPA's April magazine? Link

Friday April 11th

Happy 73rd birthday to journalist and columnist Ellen Goodman! Goodman won the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Commentary in 1980 and has spent her life documenting social change and its impact on American society. Photo courtesy of washingtonpost. Link

Wednesday April 9th

It's not too late to register for the Missouri Advertising Managers Annual Meeting! Registration is open until Friday. We'd love to have you! Link



RT @CNN: An orangutan w/ air gun pellets in his body was rescued. See his story & the week in 33 photos…
Friday April 18th


Have you checked out MPA's April magazine? #MPA #journalism #missourijournalism
Thursday April 17th


RT @MoBusinessAlert: .@googlefiber expanding to Kansas City businesses
Thursday April 17th


RT @CoMissourian: Missouri public university officials are concerned income tax cuts could limit funds for education
Wednesday April 16th