Jul 1, 2020 - Technology

Scoop: Twitter removes photo from Trump tweet after NYT copyright complaint

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Twitter has removed a picture from a tweet by President Trump on Tuesday after it received a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) complaint from the New York Times, which owns the rights to the photo.

Why it matters: This is the second time in two weeks that Twitter has had to take down content from Trump's account due to a copyright violation.

  • Twitter and Facebook both removed a manipulated video tweeted by the president's account two weeks ago after the parents of the toddler subjects featured in the video lodged a copyright claim.

Details: A Twitter spokesperson confirmed that the tweet in question had been actioned due to a DMCA complaint from a rights holder. A Times spokesperson confirmed that it filed the take-down notice and that Twitter took action.

  • The copyright complaint was posted to the Lumen Database, a database that gathers legal complaints and requests for removal of online material.
  • Twitter notes in its copyright policy that it responds to valid copyright complaints sent to it by a copyright owner or their authorized representatives.
  • Twitter regularly shares the total number of DMCA takedown notices and counter-notices it receives for Twitter and Twitter-owned Periscope content.

Between the lines: The photo shows a picture taken by Damon Winter, a Pulitzer-Prize winning photographer for The New York Times. The photo was taken by The Times to accompany a feature it wrote on then candidate Donald Trump in 2015.

  • Twitter confirmed that the image in question that was taken down was utilized in a meme that was tweeted by the president.

The big picture: The action comes as Big Tech platforms are increasingly cracking down on the president's accounts for violating its policies or spreading misinformation.

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