- Basics of Copyright
- 1. WHERE... is the work used and which national law is applicable?
- 2. WHAT... is a protected work?
- 3. WHO... owns the copyright in the work?
- 4. WHICH... rights in the work are protected?
- 5. HOW... may other people use a work?
- 5b. HOW ... can other people use a work? - Contractual licenses
- 6. AND... responsibility and sanctions?
The user plays a central role in how social media functions. In fact, the user usually generates the content and then determines the group of recipients of their communications. Users also create links and references to third-party content, thereby rendering it more visible (Federal Council, Cadre juridique pour les médias sociaux [Legal Basis for Social Media], Report of the Federal Council in Fulfilment of the Amherd Postulate 11.3912 of 29 September 2011<769</, p. 11). In other words, the arrival of Web 2.0 and social media has turned Internet users into content providers, and now web users determine what content gets broadcast (Salvadé V., Droit de l’auteur et technologies de l’information et de la communication [Copyright and Information and Communication Technologies], Schulthess, Geneva, Zurich, Basel, 2015, p. 17).
Copyright also applies on social media. This means the user is responsible for the content they make available on the Internet, in particular, when they violate copyright (Legler T., Le rôle des différents acteurs de l’Internet [The Roles of Various Internet Stakeholders] in: Dallèves L./Bagnoud R (ed.), Internet 2005, CEDIDAC, Lausanne, 2005, p. 4). Anyone who provides content which is illegally published on social media is therefore legally liable (Federal Council, La responsabilité civile des fournisseurs de services internet [Civil Liability of Internet Service Producers], Report of the Federal Council of 11 December 2015, p. 63). When they can be identified and tried, they face civil and criminal prosecution.