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Can I get in trouble for copyright infringement if I post someone else's picture on social media without their permission?

Copyright law protects original creative works, including photographs, which means posting someone else's photo without permission is considered copyright infringement.

Even if a photograph is not copyrighted or is in the public domain, unauthorized use can still violate copyright law.

Public domain images are generally older works whose copyright has expired or were created by the government or certain public organizations.

Always verify the copyright status of an image before using it, considering factors like originality, authorship, and intended use.

If someone else took the photo and owns the copyright, you need their permission or must purchase the copyright from them to use the image.

Failure to obtain permission can result in legal consequences, including monetary damages and injunctions.

The "fair use" rule allows limited use of copyrighted material without permission, but this is often misunderstood and can be a gray area.

Under the fair use doctrine, it is permissible to use limited portions of a work for purposes such as commentary, criticism, news reporting, and scholarly reports.

There are no legal rules permitting the use of a specific number of words, musical notes, or percentage of a work under fair use.

If a photograph is used in a commercial website, you may be liable for civil damages, especially if you can reasonably expect to profit from publishing the photo.

Creating original content is the easiest way to avoid copyright infringement, especially when posting videos or photos on social media.

Unpublished works are less likely to qualify as fair use than published works, especially if copying from unpublished works deprives the author of their right to decide when and whether the works will be made public.

If someone posts your photo online without your consent, pursuing legal action can be challenging, but you can take certain actions, such as asking them to remove the photo or reporting the incident.

Photographs taken after 1988 enter the public domain 70 years after the death of the creator, and photographs taken prior to 1988 enter the public domain 50 years after the death of the creator.

All photographs belonging to the federal government are public domain, and you can use them without permission.

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