Photographers and the Obsession with Copyright

Photographers and the Obsession with Copyright

35 posts
11 Feb 2014
ATVLONDON
Photographer
ATVLONDON
I've noticed a few threads on other sites whereby Photographers are complaining about copyright issues and how their watermarks are being removed by models using them on their portfolios.  I just wanted to mention a young lady I know who photographs mainly babies and young children at her home studio.  She is very busy and her success is due to the fact that she takes about 40 images, places them on a CD for the customers to print and manipulate as much as they want.  She doesn't care how many copies they make or what they do to them.  She has made the money she wants from each sitting.  She charges about £60 for an hour sitting.  I couldn't believe it when she told me she doesn't have any issue with the images being used anywhere else.

Posted 11 Feb 2014
RealityImaging
Photographer
RealityImaging
That's fine. They are still her copyright. Interesting to think that what if her images ended up on some pervy website for kiddy fiddlers if she wouldn't care what happened to them?

Posted 11 Feb 2014
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
She's made her money and is happy with that, and if that business model works why should she shoot herself in the foot with potential future customers by being an arsehole regarding enforcing her right as copyright owner.

Photographers are generally far too precious with their images especially when they have little commercial value beyond the money made on the initial shoot.

Posted 11 Feb 2014
RedChecker

She's made her money and is happy with that, and if that business model works why should she shoot herself in the foot with potential future customers by being an arsehole regarding enforcing her right as copyright owner. Photographers are generally far too precious with their images especially when they have little commercial value beyond the money made on the initial shoot.



Agree with that, I mean generally those who go away and edit the shit out of the images probably wont really understand/respect the photographer enough to credit them anyway. If the photographer has made her money and she is happy with what she is making then great stuff, personally I probably would be quite similar to her. I wouldn't be precious over images which mean very little to me - if its standard boring studio stuff of people that mean nothing to me then it wouldn't bother me at all.

Might be different if it was a concept I had spent a great deal of time or money doing - but thats a little different. I can understand people being pissed off if those images were taken and used commercially.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
Keltica
Photographer
Keltica
Thanks for sharing that but if I punched you in the face, YOU might think that's OK but it's still an offense in law, and that's what we have to hammer home, like piracy, it's ILLEGAL and being so, photographers and others who producer work must have protection under law.



Posted 11 Feb 2014
redbaron
Photographer
redbaron
If it works for her fine, clearly she knows the value of her work. I agree with the sentiment about copyright but it seems to me it is those who do it for a hobby who get the most irate over that. Besides she is not surrendering copyright. Merely giving them 'full rights' usage.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
Edited by redbaron 11 Feb 2014
profilepictures
Photographer
profilepictures
The law is the law, and each to their own in relation to this ladies business. For me, I appreciate my stuff might never get anywhere in financial and popularity terms, but nonetheless, its mine and isn't made in a glib or superficial manner; however anyone else sees it, if I make a picture of a person, its a sincere attempt to show them as well as I can and my interpretation of what will make them look great. I only give out stuff I'm personally pleased and proud of and perceive that's how I want the picture to look. It isn't open to further interpretation or alteration from that point on and rightly or wrongly, I'll throw a helluva hissy fit if someone is rude enough to start fooling with my pictures.

The closest emotional response I can equate this feeling to, is having offered a sincere and thoughtful gift, to be told the recipient doesn't like it.

Posted 11 Feb 2014
stolenfaces
Photographer
stolenfaces
Keltica
Thanks for sharing that but if I punched you in the face, YOU might think that's OK but it's still an offense in law, and that's what we have to hammer home, like piracy, it's ILLEGAL and being so, photographers and others who producer work must have protection under law.
As described it doesn't sound illegal at all. She seems to have granted a license to the purchasers, although it is possible that she has actually transferred the copyright in the contract she has with her client, or maybe she just chooses not to enforce her rights. If she let's the clients know that she will not enforce her rights before the contract is entered into, it may be that non-enforcement is an implied term of the contract. Normally 'illegal' is used in connection with breaking the criminal law. Hitting someone in the face is a criminal offence. The creator of a work has certain rights, which they can enforce in the courts, but it is not a criminal offence to ignore those rights. From the story (as told) it sounds a very sensible commercial approach to the modern world, where the clients she is working with are worth more as repeat customers than attempting to sell them more products from each session. It is never going to be worth suing them for misuse.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
Keltica

Thanks for sharing that but if I punched you in the face, YOU might think that's OK but it's still an offense in law, and that's what we have to hammer home, like piracy, it's ILLEGAL and being so, photographers and others who producer work must have protection under law.


It's only illegal if you chose, as copyright owner to assert your rights.

However, if you'd been contracted to do a specific job in which you gave out the digital versions of the images, unless you'd agreed otherwise in a contract it would probably be fair to assume that your client can subsequently do as they pretty much please with the images.  I very much doubt a court would be sympathetic to your crusade if you subsequently went after one of your clients based on asserting your copyright simply because you weren't happy that you struck the best deal you could.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
Edited by RedChecker 11 Feb 2014
magpie1
Photographer
magpie1
The full story of the quoted 'young lady' in the original post does not mention anything about business issues such as tax, liability insurance, house insurance informed for running a business from it etc.etc. one presumes these issues have been addressed and everything is legitimate, if the business is an additional income then the pricing and business policy appear to be just £60 for a package that brings her in some money and no worries afterwards, maybe if a dissatisfied customer, makes a complaint to Trading Standards things might be different?
But the relinquishing of copyright etc. devalues the entire process for everyone and the approach is one of the reasons why its easier for copyright eroding legislation to be proceeded with and buyers such as press agencies drive fees down.


Posted 11 Feb 2014
ATVLONDON
Photographer
ATVLONDON
@Magpie.  As far as I'm aware everything she does is legit regarding the paying of taxes etc.  However, I'm not nosey enough to start questioning her about her personal details as I am not affected by them and she seems to be getting lots of recommendations for her work.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
paule
Photographer
paule
If the business model works for her fine... you can include images with a package without losing copyright, most people just want to be able to share with family and friends.. which imho, is fine..

The issue may come if one of her clients enters one of her photos into a competition, posts on a magazine site, uploads them to a stock site or if they are uber enough: used by commercial media providers of any description..

Will she then be happy that her photos have been used, without any recognition?


Posted 11 Feb 2014
stolenfaces
Photographer
stolenfaces
magpie1
The full story of the quoted 'young lady' in the original post does not mention anything about business issues such as tax, liability insurance, house insurance informed for running a business from it etc.etc. one presumes these issues have been addressed and everything is legitimate, if the business is an additional income then the pricing and business policy appear to be just £60 for a package that brings her in some money and no worries afterwards, maybe if a dissatisfied customer, makes a complaint to Trading Standards things might be different? But the relinquishing of copyright etc. devalues the entire process for everyone and the approach is one of the reasons why its easier for copyright eroding legislation to be proceeded with and buyers such as press agencies drive fees down.
Copyright is hers to do with as she likes. Yours is a argument similar to 'home taping is killing music' - did that do the music industry any good? No, because it was palpable rubbish. People paid for a LP or CD and then weren't able to make a legitimate tape copy to play in their car or a mixtape. Meanwhile the record companies were paying millions in marketing to get their music played on the radio. And so when MP3s came along they didn't look again at how to get the public to pay them, but hid their heads in the sand. You would have to sell very few photos to have time to spend your time policing them. If you try to enforce your copyright over a facebook mum, what do you achieve? If a court were to award you damages they would be based on your loss... which would be 50p, £5 or nothing ?? In this case it's almost certainly better to make a virtue out of necessity.
Posted 11 Feb 2014
stolenfaces
Photographer
stolenfaces
paule
If the business model works for her fine... you can include images with a package without losing copyright, most people just want to be able to share with family and friends.. which imho, is fine.. The issue may come if one of her clients enters one of her photos into a competition, posts on a magazine site, uploads them to a stock site or if they are uber enough: used by commercial media providers of any description.. Will she then be happy that her photos have been used, without any recognition?
Why would she care ? She's competing against uncles and sisters and photo machines, not against Bailey
Posted 11 Feb 2014
magpie1
Photographer
magpie1
No not an argument similar to "home taping" apart from the copyright erosion the 'Dutch Auction' principal of ever descending charges comes into play, if somebody offers what she does for £55, then does she come down to £50, then its £45, then £40-----?

Posted 11 Feb 2014
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