Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by decosnapper

  1. Fixed that for you... A cursory glance at the topics shows a strong leaning towards a very kit-biased line of what camera to buy and what secondhand kit others wish to sell. Very rarely is there a question about composition, light or anything about the creative side. Which is why I had to ask for a password reset. It had been a very long time... Back to the original thread. I can't offer anything in this case, but I would urge everyone entering competitions to read the terms and conditions carefully, and then check them against the Artists Bill of Rights (http://www.artist-bill-of-rights.com/guides/bill-of-rights-introduction) and perhaps check if the terms offered by the competition is supportive of creators? Is there a rights grab? How can the competition exploit the images? Is a credit for the winners mandatory? Are the judges identified? This list is not exhaustive, but I would encourage anyone entering a competition to check and if there is any doubt to find another more worthy contest.
  2. There are several things one can do:- 1. Refuse to supply image use rights for fees that fail to reflect the cost and risk of creation. 2. Register your works with the US Copyright Office and hand over all infringements to an attorney. 3. Carry on creating and publishing images but use them as PR for another product, goods or service from which you can derive benefit/payment from. Asking photographers and their egos to stand their ground with option 1 is not going to happen any time soon, but I subscribe to this policy. Option 2 derives an irregular but handsome income stream for me in spite of not publishing anything new for nearly two years. Option 3 helps sell all sorts of things; trips, books, courses - whatever. There will be other ways and means. But its not stock, direct sales or Facebook likes of that I'm quietly confident. Besides, the concept and practice of underwater 2D imagery is a bit old hat. Here's the latest from Scapa Flow:- https://skfb.ly/IGBF And yes, some have been licensed. And work quoted for.
  3. For some, this is the new way of making money. If there is any hint that the individual or company responsible can be traced to an address, forget DMCA (a truly dreadful piece of legislation...) and find an attorney/lawyer who will work on contingency. Takedown notices simply reinforce the view its OK to take and then remove if asked...meaning they simply carry on and find another creator's work. It has occurred to me that since around 2010 there has not been a day when I have not been in litigation of some form...such is the new way of making money.
  4. Whenever I see an image I have a natural curiosity to understand its creation and - crucially - the level of manipulation applied to achieve the end result. How many of us share our rushes? All of them? On the back of the camera after the dive? On the editing screen? Not many I guess, because initially* it can feel like taking a s**t in public. And yes, the perfect published world will only reinforce the view that anything that isn't processed/cropped/magic dust/filtered beyond belief is not worthy. And at some point, credibility/belief is lost. But there is nothing really new with that one. So yes, unrealistic expectations with regard to backscatter. Unless you are diving the truly crystal clear waters under waters of the Ross Ice Shelf or in Te Waikoro Pupu Springs in New Zealand**. *initially it did feel like taking a dump when sharing with another photographer. But that emotion passes...and its quite liberating. Highly recommended. **Last time I heard, diving had been banned in Pupu Springs.
  5. Forget agencies. Ring the picture desk and negotiate directly. Higher return...less grief...quicker payment...
  6. Something I have been working on for a while now is underwater 3D photometry. The subject are a pair of WW2 era Valentine Tanks. Used extensively by the allies, these are duplex drive (DD) variants designed for amphibious landings. These examples were lost during Exercise Smash in 1944, a training exercise leading up to D-Day. A further 5 tanks were lost and sadly six of their crew drowned. The models are derived from around 700 individual frames, all shot on one dive:- Firstly, the intact example:- https://sketchfab.com/models/4f755bb9f4d74e98aa34bf40dc1d31fc Secondly, the damaged example:- https://sketchfab.com/models/2f76cf180a8c4dd184515d2fbeeb64bf The tanks are annotated to highlight a few of their features.
  7. Cheers all. Second Valentine Tank is processing right now...and the offshore Coronation wreck site comprising cannon & anchors (not all of it...) is under way... Watch this space!
  8. So it sounds like I'm asking for the moon on a stick. Here's why:- https://sketchfab.com/models/2f76cf180a8c4dd184515d2fbeeb64bf
  9. ...yeah, I know...another "what wide angle works.." thread... So I have a very specific requirement to shoot material with a rectilinear lens. Here's the requirements/fits with list:- As wide as practically possible, but NOT fisheye. NOT zoom in any way or form. FX frame - D700 Min focus 1m minimum. Closer better but not essential. Subal DP FE4 glass - corner to corner sharpness at F5.6 to F8 to "no visible difference to centre of frame". So what fits that list? Real world used it in anger experience most welcome...
  10. Asking if they have a budget is not unreasonable...if they say "sure...it's in the ball park of $xxxx" then you know they are serious. If they say "budget?" then perhaps they might be looking for freebies. Size, or indeed existence of budget needs establishing very early on. You can waste a lot of time figuring out what you charge only to find out they have no money...never intended to have money and were wasting your time. It's the golden rule of the freelance; find out what the budget is and then plan to take all of it. Additional services, extras, you name it you sell it.
  11. From getty: Advertising, worldwide, 500 placements of ONE image of a billboard, sports and leisure for 1 year. That came to just over £6000 So if your sports company wanted to use an age for worldwide advertising for 1 year that's the kind of price Getty would charge. Being paid by the hour might seem like a good idea...but IP is best sold on the right to use.
  12. Do not sell on time. This may (stress may as US law is not my thing) that the images are shot on "work for hire" basis which means you do not own the rights. Do not sell on time. Price up a single image for 1 year worldwide advertising rights on Getty. Then perhaps double the number for exclusive use. Then figure out how many images they might want and multiply. That "might" put you somewhere in the right ballpark to start negotiations. Then check the legal side. Here in the UK we have the diving at work regulations and an advertising commission would fall under this remit. Check lo local laws. Doing it right should keep you and the client out of court. That's my quick thoughts. Best of luck.
  13. Reminds me of the Obama "Hope" poster. This one settled out of court and the details remain confidential, but its a good example of where a simple "Do you mind?" would have saved a lot of bother. Before you do anything, ask yourself this question:- "What do I want the outcome to be?" And some choices might be:- Do nothing and carry on. Recognition the work was a derivative from your photo. Payment. Destruction of the derived work. I think all are possible. If it were me I would probably start by asking for 2, 3 and 4 with an option of dropping 4 if they turned out to be pleasant to deal with. But only dropping 4 if they were nice people who realised they made a mistake and that it needs correcting....but its your image and up to you.
  14. I had some tentative discussions with Solent News a while back, but they went no further. With all of these deals, the key thinks to think about are:- What's in the contract? Is there a sub-licensing clause?* What triggers payment? What percentage? What is the average license fee they charge? How likely will my work attract top fees? If I were to contact the picture desks directly, could I make more money with less effort? Anecdotally, I have heard that licensing fees for use on some very high profile websites can result in a mere £10 into the creator's pocket. And this is for a site receiving hundreds of thousands of hits a day. And the terms usually mean the use rights are in perpetuity - in other words, forever. And these popular sites are then scraped for content by the infringing masses...who then use your work for whatever purpose they see fit and yes I have seen my own work ending up in some very unsavoury places that would not have been licensed under any terms. So you need to do a bit of homework. Figure out what the likely return is** and make a judgement call. If you can't guess already I'm not a fan and my work does not end up with syndication agencies. *I can go into more detail about why sub-licensing clauses are the work of the devil himself and are to be avoided at all costs. Been there, not good. **If they won't tell you, or give you a rough idea, then this would ring alarm bells.
  15. Sure. I use this site to view what meta data an image file carries:- http://regex.info/exif.cgi Its a great tool. Your site may decide to strip meta data - heaven only knows why sites do this for any legitimate reason - but it can happen.
  16. It was only a small sample, but none of the images have any embedded meta data? Why is this important? It can be used by others to help find you when your images walk from your site.
  17. 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?
  18. In light of a couple of things, I'm going to reopen the debate. Firstly, if you weren't giving away your work on FB now (and I will still argue you are - see below) then you may well be soon:- http://photofocus.com/2013/09/09/facebook-changes-terms-of-service-photogs-be-wary/ And secondly, this conversation may well be relevant:- 1st phone call; Me; I have just shot an image that would make a great DPS* for ****** magazine - can I send you a low res? Editor; Sure, please do. Follow-up call; Me; Hi - what did you think of the image? Editor; Great, yep...except the art director says he's seen it on Facebook...so we won't be using it. Me; I'm offering FSBR** and can categorically state its never been posted by me on Facebook...can you ask them to check? I would love to know who posted it if its there... Mufflled exchange off the phone while editor asks art chap to look... Editor; Ah no, its not yours - similar subject but useless as a DPS...gutter goes right through the subject...we will run yours...can you get us the high res?....and how much? In this world of everything is free, how can a commercial publication make money by showing its readers something they can see for free elsewhere? Like I said, if giving your work away works for you then by all means carry on as its your property - at least until you upload it to FB and then share commercial rights with them, with no money in exchange. In a perverse way it means those who give stuff away undermine the market, but in certain cases allow others who don't to exploit a unique content gap and fill it at a higher rate. Each to their own I guess. *Double page spread - one image across two pages **FSBR - First British Serial Rights
  19. The terms of social media use give broad use rights to the publisher and others. This can mean simple sharing amongst others or for full-blown commercial advertising. That's part of the deal. You get to showcase your work and in exchange give away very broad rights indeed. Well yes, capitalism has indeed. Funny thing is I have never seen other photographers as direct competition really...and actively welcome competition as it raises all of our collective abilities...But my main point is those who espouse capitalism and derive significant profits or benefits have decided to put the cost of overheads for things like website content at zero. Or to put it another way those who publish my work have unilaterally set the fee at precisely nothing without asking me, even when there is a huge spoiler of a watermark running through the image that visibly asserts my rights and my phone number is embedded in the meta data...its just ignored. I really am at a loss to understand this...equally I am at a loss to understand why anyone would pay for stuff they can just help themselves to when there are no apparent or obvious consequences - that is until I show up and ask them to do the decent thing and pay only to be told "we don't pay for images..." and then the process of asserting ones rights commences... This is not capitalism, its theft. This is not a definition of a functioning market between willing buyer and seller. This is what I mean by not being able to compete with free. Always made more sales by knowing who would most likely use the image before I created it, rather than using a scattergun approach. But even when I used social media to push my work, the volume of infringements did not slow down, nor did anyone make contact asking to use before publication. It became apparent that I was adding more material to a conveyer belt that eventually ended in infringing publication. It can be a great tool. Its just not worked for me. I'm taking a very long view on the image market and right now I am actively choosing not to participate in the electronic world. That does not mean I have stopped creating, nor does it mean I have stopped selling my work, its just not online. Couple of points; Luck is like hope - its great when an unforeseen sale happens but I don't see hope/luck as good strategy for business. When creating an image I usually have an end publication or use in mind. It is, if you like, stacking the odds of a successful outcome rather than relying on the chance of someone finding the image. As for the court case, don't look at the headline figure. The judge "only" awarded £350 for two months online use - or £175 per month. The rest was further damages for ignoring a watermark and first british serial rights. The balance was costs. I was happy with the original valuation for what was quite a low traffic site and for the additional damages. I would have rather sold the rights, but that didn't happen and once published the infringer took away any chance of selling an exclusive license. And whilst selling an image for a lot more than the court case achieved might seem like a good deal, without knowing the use rights that were sold its pretty much impossible to make any form of sensible comparison. Like I said, don't always take the headline figure at face value. And sometimes its worth going to court to assert your rights, to stand up for fellow creators and help set guidelines as to why ignoring a watermark is a bad thing. I really wish other creators would stand up for themselves and in doing so help others, but I do recognise its a personal decision. Finally I will add this; I have been known to refuse very lucrative use rights because the intended purpose of publication was not in keeping with my own values, or was misrepresentative of the subject in question. This right - the right to say "no, not at any price" is often overlooked by the masses - until something goes wrong that is. But by then its too late...right now I have an uncredited image doing the rounds, acting as a non-attributed advert you might say. Of the 3000 or so infringing uses there are political agendas, religious bias and other disagreeable uses I would not allow at any price. And all of this from an image someone else decided to share on my behalf...
  20. I'm going to share my thoughts on this. A great image costs a significant amount of money. Consider the time one invests in the craft alone, let alone capital expenditure on kit, gas, travel etc. And all underwater activity comes with risk that needs mitigating somehow. Every great image needs to cover the costs of the entire business, including the duds when the vis wasnt great or the weather wont cooperate. And I find it morally repugnant to find a company making money from my work but singularly failing to even consider paying the creator anything. Last year 80% of my income came from recovering damages from infringers. For a long time I let things go but when income from legitimate sales was falling way below the cost of production something had to change. The sharing of my work for free was a direct and measurable loss. Yes there was still demand for my work, but no one wanted to pay for it. You could say the 'advertising' budget was killing me. I can only speak of one case that ended up in the High Court where someone went and published an image without even considering the watermark. There were two other instances, both involving media organisations whose profits were in the hundreds of millions of pounds, where the publisher just ignored the visible statement asserting my rights. Ugly watermarks are no deterrent to those who crave content. In all cases of infringement I have dealt with the meta data is either stripped or ignored. I cannot say how many near miss infringements have been avoided but I can say that precisely no one has contacted me for a legitimate sale as a result. I'm more than happy to see competitors give their work away. From personal experience I would say the 'free' business model in a capitalist economy is unsustainable. The more I look at the business models of others I have a suspicion that deriving a direct income from the licensing images is becoming less and less important as other means of being paid are available. In short, recovering my losses from infringers was enough to replace the lost legitimate sales. But the entire process is a miserable thing to do and has ensured I no longer want to keep adding more free content to that treadmill. To anyone who gives their work away I say this; Its your property and you are entitled to do with it as you wish, but is it really OK to see companies derive profit from your creative endeavours?
  21. Ask the client what the budget is. Treat that fee as a starting point and negotiate upwards. As a guide, use a stock library pricing calculator. Find the highest fee and have that in your mind when discussing it with them. They may well have done the same...
  22. I started pulling all my work from stock around 2 years ago. The value of either individual sales or use by large subscription deals had dropped to single digit dollar levels. At the peak I had four figure volume of work available for licensing through various agents. I was seeing images licensed for worldwide perpetual use by large publishers and I would end up with maybe one or two euros commission. The other issue is what is known as a sub-licensing agreement whereby the first agent you can sign to ends up selling your work through other stock libraries. This means the 100% sale fee can be split twice or three times before you see your money. I After pulling all images from stock the issues I have since found is that:- a) Not all publishers using stock paid for it at time of download, and the agency never chased these up. b) Even after pulling material from stock some agencies continued to license my work. c) when contacted, none of those in either a) or b) think they have done anything wrong. These issues have continued to cause me more problems than the original submission is worth. As an aside, Getty are now allowing bloggers free use of images. There are rules and its not quite a free-for-all but the monetisation of this use is not as daft as it seems. Getty - who own the rights to the meta data describing your photo - can hang advertising alongside the image. As the entire process is based on meta data and its relevance to the advert, I don't anticipate Getty paying a share to the photographer any time soon... So in summary, if you want to earn beer money go and work in a bar or stack shelves in the supermarket. By the time you have sorted, ID'd and described and keyworded your work the return on your time - not including the time to actually shoot the stuff - is so low you may just end up wondering why you bothered. After pulling from stock I have missed the 'income' precisely zero. It made no statistical difference to turnover. And if you choose not to allow your creative efforts to be licensed by a third party for practically nothing then I will salute you.
  • Create New...