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Old Nov 21, 2006, 5:32 AM   #1
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Please could someone explain to me where I stand on the Copyright of my images.I recently supplied a printing firm with my pics along with a strict copyright notice.My pic tures where edited/manipulated without my permission by someone else before print.

How can I stop this happening again


TD
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Old Nov 21, 2006, 5:40 AM   #2
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What was the exact scenario here? Were you just getting pictures printed and are complaining that they cropped/adjusted the levels etc before producing them for you, or had you provided them with photos on a commercial basis for use in a catalogue etc?
If the former is the case, then there's a good chance these adjustments (if relativtely minor) that the machine did it automatically (which most consumers would probably appreciate, although I can see how it's annoying for people who already had them exactly as they wanted).
If it's the latter then I'd say it depends what they did to them, although I can't think of much they could have done that should really be a problem beyond disappointment at not seeing something close to your straight shot on the product: as someone who works in a magazine production capacity my understanding is once we've bought an image for use we can do pretty much what we like with it before print (make it black and white, crop heavily, clone out unwanted background elements, cut out someone's head and put it on a lion's body etc), as the copyright on the contract is just limiting us to when and where we can use the picture (ie, once in a single issue, in as many issues as we like for the next year, we can do whatever we want with it forever etc).
In future you could specify 'you are not licenced to alter this image in any way' or similar in the contract, but it's likely whatever manipulation was done to it was pre-planned before your image was selected to be the one used, and if you say know they'll use someone elses work instead.
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Old Nov 21, 2006, 6:24 AM   #3
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I had taken pics for a local Drama group for there production brochure.In return I received advertising space in the brochure.The images where edited by someone with a "slight" grasp of photoshop,bad B&W conversions ,pictures extracted from background and placed on solid colour( badly).The point is ,If they wanted B&W they should have consulted me first (as outlined in my copyright notice), I would have gladly done it.

I`m so mad because its not good advertising for the launch of my Photography business.

TD

thanks for the reply Mr Pogo
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Old Nov 21, 2006, 6:42 AM   #4
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Doh, there's not really too much you can do to prevent that sort of thing from happening then (regardless of what you've said they can or can't do), except next time perhaps use bigger letters and capitals to say any manipulation must approved/done by you
Copyright's only as good as far as you can enforce it, and in a situation like this I can't see an easy way seeking satisfactory redress (suing is expensive and would likely generate you negative press coverage with a small group like that), and with it being a one of publication rather than something regular like a newspaper it's not exactly practical to ask for correction etc in the next issue :S All I can do is suggest again that next time you provide images for something like is to really hammer home that any image manipulation must be approved or carried out by you, offering this story as explanation as to why you're so strict about it.
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Old Nov 21, 2006, 11:34 PM   #5
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Now, I'm not a lawyer so my comments should not be considered legal advice. Only an opinon of another photographer.

I'm not sure this is an issue of copywrite law, its sounds like an issue of contract law. Copywrite law convers that they can't use the image without your permission (which you gave.) It does not say if they can edit it or not once you have given that permission.

If the contract doesn't say "you manipulation" then I would bet they are free to do with it what they want. And I bet that a local drama group would not have the money that they would be worth going after in court (assuming you could show breach of contract - for example, your contract with them included that you require final signoff on the image.)

A different tact might be that you could do a similar (much better) edit of the image and show them it. Say that you feel they did a lousy job editing the image and that it reflects badly on you *and them*. Instead, they should have ask you to do it... and show them your similar (but much better) edited image. Tell them how your image shows *them* in a much better light, and you as well... a win-win for both of you.

And then point out that it would have saved them time to have you do it, as they would have freed up that person to do other things for them instead.


In other words, appeal to their own self interest.

Eric
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