Toyota ran into a sticky situation recently when it launched a new website for one of its vehicles, and the repercussions could have a lasting effect on branded websites that aggregate consumer-generated social media.
Toyota and its agency, Saatchi & Saatchi, launched a microsite for the 4Runner SUV that portrayed the vehicle as a perfect tool for outdoors escapes. The site incorporated Twitter streams and nature photography feeds from Flickr. The problem was that the Flickr stream started bringing in images from several photographers that were labeled all rights reserved -- meaning Toyota needed permission to use the photos, according to Ad Age.
The photos were quickly pulled, and the company said it will compensate the photographers, but the larger issue of aggregating social content remains. The photos linked back to the original Flickr pages, and while that's standard practice in the social sphere, it's not enough from a legal standpoint.
Skittles ran into similar issues earlier this year when it turned its traditional corporate website into a social media aggregator, complete with a Twitter feed that failed to filter out lewd comments about the brand.