EFF trounces Zillow, McMansion Hell will return from copyfraud purgatory


Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/06/29/legal-bullies.html


For a crash course in Fair Use, I highly recommend the documentary Sonic Outlaws - which mainly focuses on the U2 vs Negativland suit.


TLDR for Zillow:


I feel like the end of that as missing a “U mad bro?”


She has informed Zillow, however, that she is not interested in using its site for her blog in the future.

Sounds like at least one victory for Zillow.


Wait wait wait – Zillow’s corporate counsel is Christopher Poole?

It’s perfectly clear to me now that the issue is moot.


Big incompetent bully.


Ooh I hadn’t heard of this. I’ll have to check it out.


Serious question. Can I sue Zillow for using my house information/pictures without my permission?


Looks like Zillow dropped the complaint after receiving the EFF’s letter. Now the company’s partner relations dept. can tell the pissy real estate agents and brokers who pushed them to try to bully Wagner that they gave it the old college try but taking it further would be foolish (as foolish as buying one of those ridiculous houses).


IANAL, but probably not.

For the pictures, did you personally create them? If so did you publish them in a way that allowed you to keep all rights & control to the pictures? If you didn’t create them then did someone you hired create them and did they assign all rights to you? Were these pictures published in a way that allowed you to keep all rights & control as above? If so, then you may have a case. Otherwise no, highly unlikely (see Streisand effect).

As to the information, is it public information? If you bought then home second hand then the information on the home was probably published previously by someone who had the right to publish it and Zillow is then just reporting on that information. Much property information is easily found via municipal websites & permit records as well. All of that is public information. Unless you built the house, have confidentiality contracts with everyone who was involved and everyone who has ever visited, and can prove that the information was obtained in violation of one of those contracts then you have no recourse.

Again, IANAL, but Zillow is perfectly within it’s rights to collect, arrange, and display publicly available information. They just can’t go turn around and sue someone for doing the same.


She’s only using Zillow because it’s an aggregator. So all the pictures are in one convenient place. They’re not Zillow’s photos; they belong to the original property listing. The identical pictures are on Redfin, Hotpads, and so on.


No, but you can ask Google to obscure your house.


My brother-in-law did this. His house is blurred out in street view. The houses on either side are not.


that’s just odd… besides mine has the kitty keeping his eye on the google car as it goes by, or mostly being disappointed he can’t open the door with his kittycat mind powers.


Maybe he is trying to flip the Google car with his kitty cat mind powers.


These guys are from England and who gives a $hit.


Is this going to mess up my Zestimate?


Boo… YAH!


Google complies by putting up a billboard in your front yard :wink: