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Thread: Watermarking your Web Images - Do you do that - and why?

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    Watermarking your Web Images - Do you do that - and why?

    Comments and subsequent conversation on this thread made meponder – how many Photographers (still) watermark their images for internetdisplay?

    I am particularly interested in W&P Professional Photographers – but even though this is posted in the Business Section (assuming double posting is not allowed) - I purposely posted an open question to garner a wide range of comment and opinion and from those who shoot and post not-for-profit/sale images, also.

    WW

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    Ausphotography Veteran Speedway's Avatar
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    I was shooting a race meeting about 2 years ago and my son overheard a person telling another who had just purchased some photos from me "Dont buy them if you want any I can download them from his site, remove the name and print them for free. I was going to have a go at him but that would have been counter productive as he was a member of the club. When I got home I redid watermarks on all the shots on the website, all shots are more heavily watermarked and I have since sold shots to the same person. I use a transparent watermark across the main subject on all my shots and no one has said anything negative about them. One club uses them with permission on their own website. See attached sample photo.
    Keith.


    IMG_5468W.jpg
    Last edited by Speedway; 24-01-2012 at 11:21am.
    Keith

    Canon 400D Gripped, Canon 7D LCD Timer Gripped, Canon 70-200 f2.8L is ii. Canon 2X iii Extender, Canon 50mm 1.8, Sigma 150-500, Sigma 18-250, Sigma 17-50 F2.8, Sigma 10-20, Tamron 90mm Macro, Yonguno YN460 & 460ii Speedlights and a Hanimax TZ 1 Flash, Wireless Triggers ,LED Macro Ringlight, Extension Tubes, 3 tripods, 2 monopods, PS Elements 5 & 10, PSP9 and canon s/ware, various filters and other photographic paraphernalia all packed in a computrecker backpack + 3 smaller bags and an aluminium case.

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    William I do water mark but to be honest it is not for people that want to copy and print images from the web as I only ever upload low res images so they look good on screen but if someone wanted to print them they would look terrible.
    So the main reason I put a small non intrusive water mark on images is so if people share or send my image around there is still some kind of link back to my business name.. This is pretty much just for Facebook as I don't water mark any image on my website as they are not usually shared as much as they are on the Facebook page.

    This is my example of how I watermark.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt shepherd View Post
    . . .So the main reason I put a small non intrusive water mark on images is so if people share or send my image around there is still some kind of link back to my business name.. This is pretty much just for Facebook as I don't water mark any image on my website as they are not usually shared as much as they are on the Facebook page.This is my example of how I watermark.
    Thank you.
    For clarity I was NOT thinking of your example as an example "a watermark" in the context of the Original Post - I would term yours as more the artist's signature.Yes I understand - Low Res, Looks Good but if knocked off - Prints Poorly.

    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedway View Post
    . . .I use a transparent watermark across the main subject on all my shots and no one has said anything negative about them. One club uses them with permission on their own website. See attached sample photo.Keith.
    Thank you.
    It is clear to me now I should have been more precise as to the definition of "watermark".
    Your example is more the style watermarking I mean - certainly large and across the centre of the image.

    WW
    Last edited by William W; 24-01-2012 at 1:28pm. Reason: corrected spellung

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    Matt - its worth pointing out that not many people would be either interested or informed about downloading and printing your image - the reality is that if it looks good on the monitor, most abuse now happens when people use and abuse your intellectual property in similar situations - ie ONLINE. So be very wary of thinking that youre safe because its just a low res image. Sadly most abuses now seem to be online to online, as opposed to people trying to actually print them out.

    William - to answer you as helpfully as possible - I would consider it sensible advice that if you're in business, that you should ensure that in certain situations if you're uploading to various places (Facebook and other social media places), that its good practice to watermark your images. To specifically answer you my W&P colleagues (in the very large majority) always watermark. Its just simple common sense and it doesnt take too long to do it. Sure it can be removed, as a locked door can be broken down or picked - why not protect your asset?
    William

    www.longshots.com.au

    I am the PhotoWatchDog

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    Quote Originally Posted by Longshots View Post
    Matt - its worth pointing out that not many people would be either interested or informed about downloading and printing your image - the reality is that if it looks good on the monitor, most abuse now happens when people use and abuse your intellectual property in similar situations - ie ONLINE. So be very wary of thinking that youre safe because its just a low res image. Sadly most abuses now seem to be online to online, as opposed to people trying to actually print them out.

    William - to answer you as helpfully as possible - I would consider it sensible advice that if you're in business, that you should ensure that in certain situations if you're uploading to various places (Facebook and other social media places), that its good practice to watermark your images. To specifically answer you my W&P colleagues (in the very large majority) always watermark. Its just simple common sense and it doesnt take too long to do it. Sure it can be removed, as a locked door can be broken down or picked - why not protect your asset?
    That is a good point but at the end of the day your image is still being shared and some may see that in a bad way but the way I see it is that more people are actually seeing my images and they still have my name on them so if they wanted to see more or purchase prints they can find me. But I can see were you are coming from in the way that someone could use images for there own personal gain ie advertising etc. But that is very hard to stop unless you put a big water mark right through the image and I am not willing to do that as i feel it takes to much away from the image.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Longshots View Post
    - to answer you as helpfully as possible . . . if you're in business, [ . . ] you should ensure that in certain situations if you're uploading to various places (Facebook and other social media places), that its good practice to watermark your images. To specifically answer you my W&P colleagues (in the very large majority) always watermark. . .
    Thank you.

    To clarify your answer in my mind:
    1. Your W&P Colleagues watermark all work which is uploaded to the internet or they only watermark images which are uploaded to Facebook and Social Media sites?
    2. And - your W&P Colleagues, in the main, use facebook and other social media sites as a marketing stream?
    Quote Originally Posted by Longshots View Post
    [Watermarking is] just simple common sense and it doesn’t take too long to do it. Sure it can be removed, as a locked door can be broken down or picked - why not protect your asset?


    That's why I posed the question for discussion:
    I am not of the opinion that it is fait accompli - "common sense" - but indeed clarification by answering the two follow-up questions has bearing on particular circumstances and the addressing of same.



    WW

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    An image that looks good on screen will print up ok at 6X4 which is my main seller to drivers and familys at the track. My online sales are larger prints 8X12 & 12X18. Over the years I have seen a few people with thousands of dollars of race car but have photos coppied off the net with badly removed watermarks to hand out in the pits after the races. I have also been asked to scan, copy and remove watermarks from photos. when I asked why was told they thought $30 was too dear for the photo I told them it would cost them $50 dollars to do what they wanted plus $30 for the print but I wouldn't do it anyway, they walked away muttering to themselves.
    Keith.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedway View Post
    An image that looks good on screen will print up ok at 6X4 which is my main seller to drivers and familys at the track. My online sales are larger prints 8X12 & 12X18. Over the years I have seen a few people with thousands of dollars of race car but have photos coppied off the net with badly removed watermarks to hand out in the pits after the races. I have also been asked to scan, copy and remove watermarks from photos. when I asked why was told they thought $30 was too dear for the photo I told them it would cost them $50 dollars to do what they wanted plus $30 for the print but I wouldn't do it anyway, they walked away muttering to themselves.
    Keith.
    Yeah I understand were you are coming from. Isn't it unbelievable how people wont pay $30 for an image but will spend so much time trying to get around paying for it.

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    I haven't reached the point of selling individual images yet, but I do know that when I'll be putting them up, I'll have a big fat watermark across it like displayed above.

    However, the photos I do now are the same as Matt Shepherd. Just in the corner and low res web sized images.

    Decided to "shave" my signature ;]
    Now mostly shoots with: Canon 5D MK3 & Canon 24-70 f/2.8/50mm f/1.8 (also have a 550D with a variety of lenses/goodies and a Sony Nex-5N)
    PP with: Lightroom only, Photoshop is merely a 9-5 work tool for me.

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    I do it cause it looks cool



    Wayne.




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    I decided to watermark mine , To try and stop the majority of honest thieves , I ones that may think twice if they see the Copyright symbol , Wont stop all , But will make a few think, I hope !!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by William; 24-01-2012 at 6:44pm. Reason: Added "I hope"
    Canon : 30D, and sometimes the 5D mkIII , Sigma 10-20, 50mm 1.8, Canon 24-105 f4 L , On loan Sigma 120-400 DG and Canon 17 - 40 f4 L , Cokin Filters




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    I recently posted about a dozen photos from a wedding on FB with a watermark across the bottom - the bridesmaid copied them cropped the watermark off and reposted them in her album - when i pointed out (nicely) that she was breaching copyright and a contract i had with the bride and groom - she reposted the originals. - In the main i think it was ignorance - more than an effort to make them appear to be hers - after all she was un some of them ...

    Unfortunately many people just don't realise (or care) that its theft - and a little watermark at the bottom really doesn't protect you alot - people crop and don't really care about the effect that that has on the image.
    Jeff - Jeff D Photography
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffde View Post
    Unfortunately many people just don't realise (or care) that its theft - and a little watermark at the bottom really doesn't protect you alot - people crop and don't really care about the effect that that has on the image.
    Precisely why I changed my watermark to the one above.
    Keith.

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    Ipstar have been playing around with the satellite causing dropouts and hiccuus and I thought this haden't uploaded so you can remove this one.
    Keith.
    Last edited by Speedway; 26-01-2012 at 3:54pm. Reason: doubled up

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    Bit of a balancing act really , I just want to stop the honest thieves with a reminder Watermark, Keiths should stop them You'd reckon, You can always do an Image search for stolen images using "Tineye" https://www.tineye.com/login If your really worried about theft - Bill

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    I do. People will find ways to steal them if they really want to. But my watermark is also about marketing. It gets your name seen.
    "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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    I usually fuss around with my images to make sure they can't really be blown up or printed without looking like crap. My watermark is fairly subtle as I really don't like the big obnoxious ones. I'd rather see the image as it's meant to be seen without text getting in the way and tend to move on fairly quickly from those images. It's a double-edged sword.
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    After seeing some of my images used in a commercial application and another reproduced on a mouse pad without so much as a courtesy request I now whack a copyright watermark right across the middle of all shots.
    Sharing is one thing, but helping yourself to anothers work is something else again.
    Cheers
    Grant

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    Personally, i have only really posted my photos here and on facebook which is only shared with my family and friends. So i havnt watermarked those images. However, if i was publishing them online, etc. I would watermark them for sure, it serves two purposes in my opinion. The first being to help protect images from being stolen/used without permission, and secondly it can help get your name "out there" or atleast into the viewers mind. Just my opinion

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