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More rip offs of U/W photo stuff_slugs in particular

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I can appreciate all these factors coming into place. Can anyone else ie (jlyle) share as an example what have been figures paid for images? And what factor(s) were involved in this?

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I started off using this calculator for base pricing: http://www.stockphotopricecalculator.com/index.asp Using photos without asking first is an automatic 50% surcharge.

 

You have to register, and it gives you a good idea of pricing for different usages and audiences. I find it really helpful when I'm asked to price for something I haven't sold to before (like the cover of a corporate annual report). Once you've been through a few negotiations with a range of organisations and uses you get a better idea of what the market is willing to pay.

 

A lot of people expect photos for free. They send these ambiguous emails with lots of compliments asking if they can use some of my shots. When I reply and say, yes, no worries, here is my invoice they go mysteriously silent. The inquiries about specific photos are much more likely to follow through.

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Even that does not stop some...

 

I actually dislike intensely watermarks, but not for aesthetic reasons. Watermarks - in my view - reinforce the view that photographers should, in some way, be protecting their work. There is no need, no formal requirement...copyright is clear on this point and we can all leave them lying around for others to view...there are racks and racks of magazines available with plenty of images displayed...we should be at liberty to enjoy our property without concern, but there are many who do not respect this.

 

 

It's against the law for someone to steal my computer I left in my unlocked car. But it would be stupid for me to leave it out like that. My opinion is putting your photos out there without watermarking them is the same thing. And no Im not saying stealing your photo is right. I just, personally, think it's dumb to leave your computer out and get mad when someone steals it. Computer is a metaphor for photos. I just know someone is going to ask.

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I just, personally, think it's dumb to leave your computer out and get mad when someone steals it. Computer is a metaphor for photos. I just know someone is going to ask.

 

Stealing your computer deprives you of the computer. The removal of property in this way is theft.

 

Stealing a print of an image would deprive the photographer of the pleasure of viewing the image. This is theft.

 

Copying an image and publishing the copy does not deprive the photographer of their image. The source, the original, remains in place and therefore the 'theft' aspect simply does not register.

 

This concept is what many struggle with, but this overlooks the simple fact that property rights around Intellectual Property are not the same as real world goods. With Intellectual Property it is the right to copy where the true value lies and unless waived in writing, the creator and the creator alone enjoys this right.

 

This right to copy can be seen as somewhat abstract in this cut & paste world, but this simple principle is of paramount value. Why? Because the user of the image may wish to publish someone else's property for purposes the creator would not agree with, at a price that is unacceptable orin a way that may be considered derogatory. Permission first is of extreme value and in this world of email, Facebook, Wetpixel, Googie Image Search, Skype etc etc etc its easier than ever to contact the creator. After all, asking permission first is only good manners, isn't it?

 

So yes, watermarking is one way of eroding the aesthetic value of the work and encouraging the potential user to seek permission first. But a watermark does not disable copy/paste does it?. A watermark therefore is not comparable to locking your doors at night or alarming your car to prevent the involuntary removal of physical property.

 

I should add that using a watermarked image without permission is likely to attract damages for flagrancy - in other words, the user/publisher should have known what they were doing was wrong. Likewise for the removal of a watermark. I have successfully increased a claim on that basis.

Edited by decosnapper

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What about the legal ramifications of image theft.. Lets say a blog or website uses your image.. You try to contact them and get no response. What are the other options apart from going down the tedious and costly road of engaging legal intervention etc.. Is there some sort of process?

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A lot of legal issues depend on where you live. In the EU and UK I think the copyright laws are a bit easier to enforce than in the U.S. if the creator did not register his/her work with the copyright office. Most IP lawyers I have talked to in the U.S. suggest that the creators file all their images with the copyright office since if that is done then getting damages for infringement is easier. A lot will also depend on the use that the infringer gets from the image. If it is used for advertising then damages are more likely to be seen as appropriate than if it were put into a tumblr stream that shows cool pics from the net.

 

Bill

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I can appreciate all these factors coming into place. Can anyone else ie (jlyle) share as an example what have been figures paid for images? And what factor(s) were involved in this?

 

I use comparable Getty Image rates which vary depending on image size and use. The fee for a very small, web image of a common subject is pretty reasonable, IMHO.

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What about the legal ramifications of image theft.. Lets say a blog or website uses your image.. You try to contact them and get no response. What are the other options apart from going down the tedious and costly road of engaging legal intervention etc.. Is there some sort of process?

 

Like Bill said, the answer 'depends'. Who is using the image? What purpose? What jurisdiction? How long has the image been used? Is the image registered with the USCO?

 

All make a difference. Right now I have an image that has been used here, there and everywhere. I'm working through the commercial use UK infringers first, then european. Following that, the US...we then head into the territory of unknowns - for me at least - with China/Far East. I have to prioritise my workload & time so focussing on those easy to resolve quickly makes sense.

 

Often, a letter will be enough to get some form of resolution (note 'take it down' is not a satisfactory resolution). Anecdotally, the sooner the infringer seeks qualified legal advice, the better - the job of a lawyer is to reduce risk to their client and are usually aware of the spiralling costs of fees and legal costs if settlement is not swift. The lawyer is less likely to feel angry, bitter or resentful and will have a clear, cold view of the facts. Not all infringers can remain calm.

 

For bigger infringements I use legal representation. It takes a lot of stress out of the situation for me and frees me up to create, which is what I really like doing with my time. Two infringements are in that process, and in two weeks have spent about 5 minutes on the phone with the lawyer, clearing up a few facts and deciding on the next steps. Had I decided to manage those myself, it would have taken hours...

 

In all cases, I cannot stress the value of having some form of proof that demonstrates the fees/damages you seek are reasonable. In every case, the pressure to reduce the originally claimed fees is ever-present and requires counter-argument. The Getty price calculator is but one tool...better still are paid invoices detailing previous use of comparable work.

 

The moral of the tale? Value your work...no one else will.

Edited by decosnapper

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Simon I really think you could write a book about this subject of tracking down and resolving image copyright infringements. I know

I'd buy a copy right now especially since I've found yet another one of mine on a corporate website.

 

Cheers,

Jim.

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Simon I really think you could write a book about this subject of tracking down and resolving image copyright infringements. I know

I'd buy a copy right now especially since I've found yet another one of mine on a corporate website.

 

Thanks Jim...not considered that one...

 

By all means PM me if you want to chew over your latest example...

Edited by decosnapper

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Will take you up on that Simon, thanks for the kind offer.

 

Cheers,

Jim.

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