Mom Finds Out Her Baby's Photo Is Being Used to Sell Stuff Illegally

In more terrifying news for moms, one woman is suing a company for using her son's photograph on product packaging without her permission. The photo, which is of her 11 month old son, was used on a type of firework that apparently shoots flaming balls.

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The grey area here, though, is that the little boy, Sammy, is actually a famous Internet meme (you might know him as Success Kid). Copyright laws drop memes under "fair use," which means that they're ok for people to use and modify as long as they're not getting any financial gain from them.

But Sammy's mom is arguing that the fireworks company is getting financial gain from the photo because they're using it to sell products. And she's probably right. It also comes off like a little kid (and minor, let's not forget) is endorsing fireworks, which isn't really age appropriate.

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What's extra scary about this whole story is that in 2007, Laney Griner posted a photo of her son to Flickr, and now pretty much everyone on the Internet has seen his photo. People can edit it and change the text to say anything they want, and it's more or less out of Laney's hands to stop it.

Moms get a lot of flack for being hesitant about sharing photos of their kids. It's true that most of the pictures are just going to tumble down Facebook feeds until they're out of sight ... but what about the ones that don't? Do you really want photos of your baby associated with jokes about Internet porn and herpes? What about different products? Is it worth the risk?

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There are strong arguments both ways, but it really comes down to every mom understanding the risks and making the decision that's best for their family. There's probably a really good reason every mom made the choice she did, and is it really our place to judge someone else's decision?

Do you share photos of your kids on the Internet?

 

Image via wavebreakmedia/shutterstock

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