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Everything posted by Marjo

  1. Oh no Dave... Tell the lady you also have a son... Who is good at sending invoices
  2. I agree that this isn't the response for every situation, but it works well in many. I will be using it in situations where editors of large magazines that you know "know better" approach you with the "we will give you photo credit/ getting paid in in actual money is an unreasonable request/ you're the ONLY photographer who asks for [Gasp!] " m o n e y"!" type situation and also in situations where a potential client who might not " know better" asks you to do a job that basically constitutes maybe a day off shooting but 2 weeks of editing. ( The "could you just come snap a few quick pix of xyz since your camera takes such good pictures, It'll give you exposure!"). These are the Type of situations that prompt me to either ignore request completely (not a good solution) or write emails the length of dissertations (very frustrating). Having said this, I do give "casual" pictures to friends and I make donations to the two causes I support. But when ppl who get paid themselves out of a project approach me for "free labor or resources" I find Tony's text brilliant.
  3. We know how frustrating it can be to reply to requests for free images. Instead of composing yet another lengthy reply, you can now just send a link to the excellent reply that Tony Wu has composed and that he is sharing under a Creative Commons license. I find the text comprehensive, educational and polite, hence I will start using it as my standard reply for unreasonable requests. I urge fellow Wetpixelites to sign on and use it as well. Big Thanks to Tony Wu for putting together this tool!
  4. A good photographer has the tools appropriate for the job, the knowledge of how to use the tools and masters essential photographic techniques. In addition they should understand composition, vision, message. That is the foundation. Creativity, "eye", artistic skills are great and necessary as well, but but being able to "see" an image doesn't help much if you dont have the tools and knowledge to create the actual image. Then you need patience, persistence, planning and the opportunities and abilities to place you in proximity of whatever the subjects are. So my answer would be yes and no: Yes, you need good tools to be a good photographer. No, good tools are not enough to make a good photographer.
  5. It looks like their status has been changed back to "good" now on the secretary of state site. The site indicates numerous instances in the past where they did not file their financial report and were dissolved only to be later reinstated.
  6. I noticed today that both AWRY, Inc and Innovative Programs Group, Inc are listed as "Standing: Bad" and "Status: X - pending dissolution" with the Kentucky Secretary of State. This doesn't sound good for those who have the DEPP insurance plan (or for those that no longer do but have outstanding receivables from them). See Innovative Programs Group Inc on Fasttrack and AWRY Inc on Fasttrack
  7. I'd like to point out that the company name is NOT DEPP. That is just the name of the "plan". This is important if you are ever to deal with the Kentucky Department of Insurance or Better Business Bureau, as they will not find the company registered as "DEPP". The name of the company is Innovative Programs Group, Inc. There is really only 3 people to IPG and the other company "Awry" which appears to do their administrative work such as issuing the checks. Deane Lehrmitt (dwl@ipginsurance.com), Dixie Lehrmitt (Dixie@AWRYInc.com) and Sandy Hall (sandy@AWRYInc.com). Deane is the one who acts as the adjustor (and a President) at Innovatibe Programs Group, Inc and the one you will probably end up communicating with. The current email that works is dwl@ipginsurance.com (the similar address with a .net ending no longer works). If you need clarity in what you can find the detail for the companies in the public records here. Just plug in the word "lehrmitt" in the search and you will get a listing of all their companies. I have been unable to find out who actually underwrites their policy. I have asked right out and they have told me they don't need to tell me that. Calling them at any of the numbers they have listed has at least for me not produced any results, they have never called me back, and insist that email is the only way they will communicate. Good luck with your claim, hope this info helps with getting in contact with them.
  8. You could try, but don't hold your breath. DEPP would not give me e refund for all the months they have not been responding to my claim during which time my equipment has been out of commission and of course could hence not be flooded. But when there was just a few weeks left on my insurance, which I had told them (in no unclear terms) that I would not be renewing, they offered to cancel my plan and refund me for the premiums for those few weeks that were left. It would have shook out to a few dollars so the whole idea was preposterous at that point. Anyway, you could try but good luck getting any response from them, and arm yourself with plenty of patience. My experience has been to have to write hundreds of emails to them plus a whole lot of grief and misery and I still don't have a complete resolution to my claim. Once upon a time they were OK, that is NOT the case anymore, judging from the communications I have received from numerous people in the past half year. Waiting for 7+ months for a resolution, dealing lots of very unpleasant communication, and in the end being offered a piddly sum to be used to bid on a used camera of unknown condition on eBay was NOT worth it. Outside the US I would recommend either finding a regular insurance company to insure your belongings or weigh the risk vs. cost of new refurbished equipment. In my case I have opted to "self-insure", setting the equivalent amount of money aside each year in case of a problem.
  9. It goes absolutely without saying that I am not sending them my credit card info. They will probably use this as an excuse to never get me a replacement camera body, but in my mind a used camera body of unknown origin and condiion is not worth giving out my credit card info to them. In fact, I just cancelled my credit card and am having new one sent to me just in case, because I had asked them not to renew my coverage and even after having sent several messages to that effect and having received replies that they had taken note of this, I received a "renewal notice" from them. When I contacted them about it they told me the renewal notice was an automated message and that the renewal would not actually happen. I called my credit card company to see how I could ensure that they would not "forget" or "mistakenly automatically" recharge me and the credit card company recommended I cancel the card and get a new one, just to be on the safe side. They have not told me anything about this replacmenet camera body except that it will be a used body that is not refurbished or checked by any authorized service center. They have not given me any indication of where it was (or will be) purchased or obtained and at what cost. Now they just want me to send my credit card so they can deduct some amount of money from it. They have not told me what amount this is or on what amount it would be calculated. I assume they are referring to a 20% flood deductible of the purchase value of that used camera body. What that translates into in $ I dont know because they have not told me the purchased price of this used camera. I am not quite willing to just send a credit card so they can deduct some money based on what info they have(n't) sent me. I pointed them to the website where the manufacturer sells refurbished gear and to the lowest comparable model. There was a refurbished body there for $705. I was hoping they woud at least go for this, but no, they would not. I don't want a used camera in unknown condition. I certainly don't want to pay out even more money for a used camera of unknown origin and in unknown condition. I feel I was lead to believe that I would at least get a camera that would somehow be certified to be in good condition by an authorized service facility. It might not say that in the policy, but I feel that this is such a basic expectation that anyone would have. They made me pay premium on a $1300 purchase value, so I certainly did not expect them to give me a uncertified used camera body replacement AND want to further deduct (have me pay) money in addition. Is it within their right to do this? I dont know. What I DO know is that it I feel mislead and that I will personally never sign up for the "DEPP" insurance program offered by Innovative Program Group Inc. again.
  10. OK this is getting REALLY ridiculous now, hear this, 7 months later: Not only do the insist that they are going to give me a USED camera body (of unknown origin and condition to me) but now they want me to send my credit card into to them so than they can charge a deductible on the amount of the value of that. So: They told me that I had to insure the camera at its original purchase value ($1300), not its depreciated value. I have been paying the premium on this original value, and been lead to believe that in case catastrophy strikes, I will be reimbursed with something equivalent to this value (not necessarily expecting money but at least thinking I will get a camera which is worth the amount I have been insuring it for). But NO, they say they will not even agree to give me a refurbished camera body. They are going to send me some used body worth only a fraction of the amount I have been paying the premium on AND they want to charge my credit card a further deductible on top of that. So, basically for all I know I get to "buy" a used piece of crap that might come off ebay or off their shelf of previously flooded gear, from them. Right.
  11. Hi Guys! I would ask you to help me stop this irresponsible sports fishing operator who kills tiger sharks here in the Virgin Islands. Unfortunately, Tiger sharks, despite being listed as "Near Threatened", are not protected in territorial waters as long as they are not being taken in parks or MPAs. Yet, this is very disturbing. I have been living and diving in the USVI for the past 14 years. We see sharks from time to time on SCUBA, but it is rare and sightings of Tigers almost exclusively happens during turtle hatching time when the Tigers move in for the "buffet". A few weeks ago some local fishermen dragged a Tiger out of the waters and killed in there on St. Croix. This was in response to seeing several tigers eating a leather-back turtle. The intention of the fishermen was probably good, albeit misguided. We need our tiger sharks and other predators in the ocean to act as "housekeepers" weeding out the sick, slow and unfit for reproduction. Without them our fish stocks will collapse. Most of the old-time fishermen who have been fishing here for generations understand this. They have seen what has happened with the fish populations. Although there are some greedy bad apples, I haven't yet seen a local fisherman who would go out and target sharks. Now a new problem has crept in to our "paradise". Some "cowboy" who isn't really a fisherman set up an operation on the island of St. John last fall. His big thing is that he kills tiger sharks. Weirdly he is combining this with "showing off the sharks", even putting scubadivers in the water while reeling them in. It is appalling! He does not seem to have the faintest clue about how interconnected all species in the ocean are and what role the Tiger shark plays in the ecosystem. In fact he seems to think he is doing turtles and marlin a "favor' by killing off the Tiger sharks! I f you can spare a moment, I would be sincerely grateful if you you could follow the links below to his facebook group and youtube tiger killing video and let him know your opinion on running a business like this. With education, awareness and information, we can hopefully convert this killer into an ambassador for sharks. facebook group here youtube channel here
  12. How do you guys feel about this: Scenario: Your camera floods, you have paid insurance premiums on the full amount of the purchase value of the camera (As required by your insurance company) and then the insurance company wants to give you a used piece of equipment as a replacement. You suggest that you would rather take a factory refurbished unit and even point the company to the source where they can purchase one from the manufacturer at approximately half the price of the purchase price you initially paid for it. The insurance company makes no indication that they will go for this, but keep telling you they are still looking and have the right to give you a used unit. My problem with this is that in the case of a camera body, unless you have it checked by the manufacturer, you can not tell what condition a used unit is in. For all you know, it might have just flooded as well, have a horribly corroded main board, and while still working, it might not work in a few days, a week or a month down the road. So I ask the insurance company what they would consider a working replacement. This is what they say: "A working replacement is one that is completely functional at the time of purchase by us. As the policy permits replacement with used, reconditioned or remanufactured items, we cannot guarantee there are no inherent defects in the product, just as we cannot be assured there were no inherent defects in the item you damaged. All functions on the item in question must be working at the time we order the replacement. As you know, even if we replaced the item with a new camera, we would not be responsible if the item malfunctioned two months following delivery. Product malfunction is not covered by insurance contracts." So in effect, basically they say they could give you any unit as long as it appears to work when they purchase it. There is no guarantee that it has been checked for preexisting conditions (such as a refurbished unit would have been). So... basically you think you will get a unit equivalent to the value of what you paid the premium on, but I fear I might actually get a cheapo questionable used piece off of **** off of ebay. Now I don't still know what they will give me, if anything. Just that they have told me that it is their right to give me a used unit which does not have to even be refurbished. But in the light of what they tell me I feel I might as well have saved paying those insurance premiums and in case of flood purchased piece of used **** off ebay myself for the money. At least it wouldn't have taken 6 months.
  13. Today marks 6 months, half a year, since I submitted my claim. Still don't have a replacement or check.
  14. After much effort I managed to get a reply saying that @ipginsurance.net is no longer valid but to send communication to @ipginsurance.com instead. So update your files. Still not feeling any better about this.
  15. I have tried to send email to ipginsurance.net (Dwl@ipginsurance.net and info@ipginsurance.net) today and the emails bounce back with a 550 #5.1.0 "address rejected" message for both email addresses. Email to awryinc.com still appears to go through but I haven't received replies to those. Anyone knows what's going on?
  16. 5 months since I filed my claim, still nothing...
  17. I have an Ikelite 40D housing for sale, now that I don't have a 40D body to go in it anymore. Have given up on DEPP even processing my claim for my flooded 40D, so I might as well sell this. PM me if still intersted.
  18. Anyone else has noticed this: Reading the DEPP insurance policy, there is no mention in the policy of a company name. There is no mention of the broker (Innovative Programs Group) nor of the actual underwriter of the policy. At least my policy only contains the words "we" and "you", no other references. Perhaps I am the only one who was sent a "policy" like this, who knows. Anyone who happens to have a DEPP policy with Innovative Programs Group, can you check your policy and see if this is the case with what they sent you as well?
  19. Jack, I am not with DAN, but from my painful expereince I would say this: Be very sure to have something in writing about how long the insurance broker/agent can sit on your claim. Also, make sure that you get the information on who is actually the underwriter and contact information for then so you can contact the adjuster. Also seek some guarantees on communication turnaround and methods. Also find out about how a long-term relationship with the insurance broker/agent will affect you, i.e. is there any point in renewing and paying for the policy after you have had claims. I know DAN does answer their telephones and they are open about who is their underwriter and how to contact them, but apart from that I really can't say much about them, except that I have hear good things about them. Personally, I will henceforward selfinsure and have advised the company I have been with since 2004 to not renew my insurance.
  20. This weekend it will be 4 months since I filed my claim, no resolution, they just say they are still investigating.
  21. Tufi is also an option that has not yet been mentioned. Really, you can't go wrong wherever you choose to dive in PNG. I dove in Tawali , Walindi and off FeBrina on the Kimbe Bay - Fathers Reef - Rabaul stretch as well as around Port Moresby (Dive Center or Loloata). All of the sites were beyond spectacular. But if I had to choose just ONE place to dive for the rest of my life if would be Milne Bay, hands down. It is hard to even comprehend the concentration of weird and wonderful and unusual critter life sites like Lawadi packs per square inch, I haven't seen anything like it anywhere else. Also, the sites around Port Moresby where quite a surprise (Pumpkin Patch being my favorite for Rhinopias and Pygmy seahorses) , I could have not imagined that such splendid diving could be found so close to the city.
  22. One week turnaround to resolution: Pretty strong argument for the State Farm option. In my case "self insuring" would have probably been less costly than renewal of my dedicated equipment (possibly protection) insurance.
  23. In one week it will be exactly 3 months since I filed a claim with my insurance broker. I still don't have a resolution, despite numerous calls and emails and every effort to provice the insurance broker with any and all information they might want and need. If you are about to insure your u/w photo gear or renew your insurance, ask yourself if in the case of a loss you can live without your gear for several months while waiting for the insurance company to process you claim and if this service is worth paying for.
  24. Odd. I have absolutely no problem with doing that. This is what I do and it work just fine: On my main server I have all "master" image files on a drive mapped to a specific letter (F). On same main server keep the LR library (not the images tho) in a dropbox folder. On my other computers (Laptop, other workstations) I have mapped a specific directory to same letter F. This is where I keep whatever image files I am interested in working on, usually the last 500 GB of files or less (depending on what computer it happens to be). I also have the corresponding dropbox on those computers. Then I have a workstation where I occasionally work but never save any images to, but I sometimes bring a USB drive with images to it. This station has the dropbox folder, and as long as I map the USB drive to this same letter F, I can work with the LR catalog just fine. The only things to be mindful of is: Don't have LR running simultaneously on two machines. "Last changed" catalog "wins" in the dropbox scenario. Granted, working on the USB will be slower, and if you keep previews in dropbox, the sync before working or it will be slow.
  25. Well, that would depend on how tiny the subject is. On a (1.6x) crop sensor body, with the 100mm lens the 1.4 tc + 500D would give you a 4 x6 mm frame, at least according to my tests shooting mm lined subject . Very difficult to shoot underwater in reality.
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