Orlando, FL asked in Constitutional Law and Internet Law for Florida

Q: Can I get into legal trouble for using a picture of my ex and I as a blog header?

Hey! So June of 2018 I posted a blog post about an old relationship I had. As the cover photo I used a picture of my ex and I (prom). I never used his name or etc. I recently was contacted by his wife freaking out about the picture that’s been up for over a year now. Can i legally get in trouble if I don’t change it?

I just moved to Florida but the blog was posted while I was living in Missouri/Illinois.

1 Lawyer Answer
Enrico Schaefer
Enrico Schaefer

A: There is always risk and the devil is in the details. However, there are a couple of issues to consider:

1. Who took the picture? That is the copyright owner. Your use may depend on having the right to use the picture for this purpose. You would likely argue that the photo is subject to the fair use defense. https://www.traverselegal.com/blog/cease-and-desist-letter-dos-and-donts-a-copyright-attorneys-perspective/

2. Use of someone's name and likeness can create legal issues. Does the blog have a commercial purpose, sidebar ads, etc? https://www.traverselegal.com/blog/what-is-right-of-publicity/

3. I am assuming there is no nudity. Beware revenge porn issues. https://www.traverselegal.com/blog/revenge-porn-laws-by-state/

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.