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FaceApp goes viral again, but have musicians read its terms?


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Photo-manipulation app FaceApp is enjoying a second spurt of virality this week, thanks to a feature that takes your photos and turns you into an older person.

Musicians are enjoying the trend too: Sam SmithDrakeDiploCarrie Underwood and the Jonas Brothers are among the artists joining the fun by posting their virtually-wizened selves on Instagram. We wonder if these stars’ lawyers are now browsing the terms and conditions for FaceApp with interest.

“You grant FaceApp a perpetual, irrevocable, nonexclusive, royalty-free, worldwide, fully-paid, transferable sub-licensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, publicly perform and display your User Content and any name, username or likeness provided in connection with your User Content in all media formats and channels now known or later developed, without compensation to you,” explain the terms.

Meanwhile, the media is already focusing on possible privacy implications of the app having access to people’s photo libraries. Some of this is based on people jumping to conclusions about an app developed in Russia – talk of “national security and privacy risks for millions of US citizens” from US politician Chuck Schumer, for example. But the core concern has more legs: people are quick to gleefully jump on a new social craze, and slower to think about who’s making the app concerned, and what permissions it’s asking for in relation to their data.

Stuart Dredge

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