Yeah, but it will probably come as no surprise to find my views less than positive...
As far as I can tell, Flickr are using the Creative Commons CC-ND-CA-BY material for commercial gain via print sales, with no revenue share being handed back to the creator. That's the nutshell...here's a longer view.
Creative Commons has at its heart a series of tags that allow photographers (amongst others) certain use rights without asking permission first. So by tagging the image CC-BY-NC-ND means anyone can use an image as long as:-
BY - there is a byline or credit.
NC - non-commercial.
ND - no derivatives
The credit bit is basically an assertion of moral rights. Generally these need to be asserted, and I charge double for anyone not crediting my work, but nevertheless BY makes it clear. Non-commercial is interesting as I charge for pretty much every single use with only prints (tangible objects/physical goods) generally being given away...bloggers, twitter users, corporations, charities - basically the rest of the world who functions with money - pays. Many who think their use is free fail to remember they are paid a salary, their employer has overheads with everything from the cost of the building to the tea/coffee fund etc, yet there is 'no budget for images' whilst at the same time issuing shareholder dividends...I digress...Finally the no derivatives means no on may alter the work as it stands.
As I understand it (feel free to chip in if you use CC... been a long time since I looked at it...) you cannot revoke a CC license. Its a one-way street and once published as such, there is no going back. So what I hear you cry? Well how about you find the Anti-Nazi/Nazi League using your images under CC and as your moral values are not aligned yet your name is associated you want it removed and them to stop using the image? No matter how much you object and find it objectionable there is nothing you can do.
So Flickr are using the work of their members and quite within the terms. The members are wondering why...and I am wondering why no one didn't see this coming? It is, after all, the new way of making money; free content and no sharing of the dosh. And no, there is nothing anyone can do - which is pretty much why I chose to give CC a very wide berth a long time ago.
Hope this helps?
- MikeVeitch likes this