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Thread: Image stolen (again). Anyone recommend a WA copyright lawyer?

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    Image stolen (again). Anyone recommend a WA copyright lawyer?

    I've just found a clothing company using one of my images on their facebook page. My watermark is still on it even. This particular clothing company had previously been told they couldn't use it, but looks like they decided to use it without permission.

    I have no experience in dealing with this sort of thing so was going to consult a lawyer and send an invoice. Is there anyone over here in WA that could be recommended?
    I welcome comments and critique. Say it like it is.. I'll appreciate your input. Suggestions on how to improve are always very welcome.

    You are free to edit my images as long as the results are posted in the thread you took the image from and nowhere else.

    www.facebook.com/teacophotography
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    This is pretty concerning and I hate to say this but, are you sure its not Facebook themselves stealing your work? as they do have the rights to any image due to being uploaded onto their site..

    As far as any Australian company or international goes, I'm pretty sure this a major no no and a breach of Australian copyright laws, there is a thread around the AP site regarding the laws and I'm sure someone or a mod will redirect you to that link for a follow up..

    Undoubtedly it's best to seek legal advise in this situation and at best all you can do is send them a email / PM regarding the image/s until you can get that advise from professional help.

    Hope that helps alittle..
    Photographer & Retoucher at L'Obsession Secrète

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    get screen shots etc. gather as mch info as you can, cause if they remove the photo, you need proof it was on their page.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    Your post sent me searching for my latest Better Photography as Issue 66 had an excellent article on just this topic (titled Google Image Search but it is about image theft by internet) by Shelia Smart. I would scan it for you but my scanner/printer is US at the moment - maybe some other APer could do it and email to you? Or you can buy the issue online and download it as pdf, or check your local library and make a copy.

    Her points:
    1. As Rick said, get a screen shot and include the date in the image.
    2. As damages rise the longer the image is on the website, use the Wayback Machine (www.archive.org) to determine how long it has been there.
    3. Send a polite email (example in the article) informing them the image on their website is yours and they have breached your copyright. Mention how long they have been using it (from step 2), a figure in $, a time limit (5-7 days usually) within which you expect to be paid, or invite them to negotiate a licence fee for a period of x years.

    Sheila says in most cases they will apologise and remove the image - it is then up to you whether or not to pursue them and would depend on the length of the breach and the size of the company and the level of exposure (ie is it their main marketing image?).

    Sheila charges $250 per annum per website for her images, just to give you a guideline. Her lawyer (luckily she gives his name!) is Philip Argy (Sydney though but he may be able to direct you to a local one) www.philipargy.com

    It does seem the larger the company the more they will obfuscate and delay so be prepared to fight it out for a lengthy stoush!

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Analog6; 22-04-2012 at 7:52am.
    Odille

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    exactly what Rick said for the moment until you get some legal advice. Make sure the copies of the screen can be dated to accurately show when they were copied.
    Nikon and Pentax user



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    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    Gees Odille, 'obfuscate' ?

    I'm getting confussed just thinking about what it means, and my head is starting to hurt too.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

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    Thanks for the info everyone....screen shots now safely on my hard drive. This is the second image in as many weeks that has been used to commercial use without permission. I've contacted a lawyer by email so hopefully should find out what to do soon. One thing i do know, is that the invoice ain't gonna be as cheap as $250.

    I'll let you know how i get on....
    Last edited by teaco; 22-04-2012 at 11:22pm. Reason: a monkey dropped a banana on my keyboard

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    Quote Originally Posted by trublubiker View Post
    Gees Odille, 'obfuscate' ?

    I'm getting confussed just thinking about what it means, and my head is starting to hurt too.
    That's what big corporations will do to you, Kevin, make your head (and wallet) hurt!

    teaco - I just reprised the article. It depends on the image, the company, the usage and the photographer. I hope you nail 'em!

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    Member MJay's Avatar
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    It is also worth noting that-

    "Facebook respects the intellectual property rights of others and is committed to helping third parties protect their rights. Our Statement of Rights and Responsibilities prohibits users from posting content that violates another party's intellectual property rights. When we receive a valid notice of IP infringement, we promptly remove or disable access to the allegedly infringing content. We also terminate the accounts of repeat infringers in appropriate circumstances. "

    There is an option on photos to report them, one of the options is to report them for breaching IP rights.

    A friend who had issues on facebook found one of the best ways to get in contact with them and get a quick response was to fax them. (Yes, apparently facebook has a fax...)
    Last edited by MJay; 23-04-2012 at 11:51pm.

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    I find it hard to believe a lawyer will cost you less than what you can invoice them for, so maybe try contacting yourself first (send the screen shots to show you have proof) and threaten legal action if account not paid with X days
    Part time Real Estate and Product photographer | CANON

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    Yip, just send them an invoice, you dont need a lawyer up until they refuse to pay




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    Darren
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