Archive for March 2010

31 Mar, 2010 | Posted by: photosource

DISSOLVED? -- Can Your Copyright Registration Be Invalidated? - One of the first things that an infringer will do in an infringement lawsuit is attempt to invalidate your registration so that you won’t be eligible for statutory damages. Fortunately, Congress recently revised the Copyright Act to make it more difficult to beat a registration.

23 Mar, 2010 | Posted by: photosource

TRACK THOSE INFRINGERS – Eventually, photobuyers of all types will soon need to be aware and be required to fulfill a "diligent search" for rights associated with photos they find and plan to use at websites, graphic houses, books and magazines. When a potential buyer stumbles upon a photo they possibly could use, whether on a website or through searching a browser or stock agency online catalog, PicScout software can determine who owns the image through software called PicScout ImageExchange It also includes details how to license the image. A new product defeats any excuses for not doing the ‘right thing’ and licensing digital rights of the image. It fits perfectly with the requirements the upcoming “Orphan” bills are likely to impose. The ImageExchange can be installed using Firefox here: Explorer and Safari versions will release soon. PicScout has been tracking infringement cases since 2005 and estimates that 80 percent of images used at commercial sites are infringements. SOURCE: More info: Suzanne Matick; Public Relations for PicScout; suzanne[at]matick[dot]net; 831-479-1888 12ORPHAN

WORKS UPDATE -- “ “- Because the British government has failed to address photographers' concerns and is trying to rush this legislation through Parliament without the opportunity for proper debate or amendments to clause 43 (formerly S42), getting S43 removed from the Bill is necessary.

IMPROVING YOUR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS. Talk to the IP Czar - Victoria Espinel is the U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator, her job is to help coordinate the work of the federal agencies that are involved with stopping illegal behavior related to intellectual property, including copyrights. Her office has requested the public to provide information about the costs and the risks along with suggestions for what the government can do to help.

17 Mar, 2010 | Posted by: photosource

GOOD PRECEDENT -- German Court Finds No Violation for Photographing and Licensing Photos of Property - The Photo Attorney says, “The law about property releases is often disputed. But as previously reported, no court has found that taking and selling photos of property violates any rights of the owner, unless the photographer trespasses on the property.” The case of Benjamin Ham is instructive on this subject. SOURCE:

10 Mar, 2010 | Posted by: photosource

REGISTRATION TOOLS -- ASMP to hold major copyright symposium: “Copyright and the New Economy: Issues & Trends Facing Visual Artists.” ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers) will present an important symposium on Wednesday April 21, 2010 at The TimesCenter in New York City. The event is part of ASMP’s Registration Counts copyright initiative to encourage all photographers to register their work and to provide registration tools and information. Though leaders representing different industries and points of view on copyright will explore significant issues, challenges and trends in the day-long program.

The symposium is free of charge to all interested parties, and participants can register now at

03 Mar, 2010 | Posted by: photosource

Educating Your Photography Clients About Copyrights
– Scott Bourne says when a client buys a print from me, I make sure it is accompanied by a Copyright Notice – and I am not talking about a little watermark on the print. Rather, I provide a document with the photo that explains it is protected by Copyright.

As the digital world makes creative works like writing and photography easier to be disseminated, discovered and downloaded, , the question comes up, who does this stuff belong to?????, cuz we’d like to thank them, credit them, and reward them. .
Well, as clever as the digital revolution has shown itself to be –it can’t always find the creator of the work. It’s come to be known as “orphan work”. No one knows its parent(s). What to do? Can a law be written that would solve this boondoggel? The Brits might have the answer. Here’s their proposal.
The problems with the Digital Economy Bill Clause 42 – Licensing of Orphan Works SOURCE: Editorial Photographers United Kingdom & Ireland and Carolyn Wright,Esq. the Photo Attorney.

ORPHAN WORKS OPPOSED IN UK -- The COPYRIGHT ACTION web site gets 60,000 page views from anxious photographers, EPUK(Editorial Photographers United Kingdom & Ireland) reveals how the bill’s clause on orphan works spells an uncertain future for photographers and publishers alike. As EPUK asks what are the dangers to photographers from orphan works legislation, it becomes apparent that hazards lie ahead for publishers as well.

From ASMP:

What are “Orphan Works”?
As described in a 2005 report that the Copyright Office prepared for Congress, an "orphan work" is a work (such as an image) that is protected by copyright but whose copyright owner cannot be identified and located. It is clear that such a situation harms both creators and users. However, the remedy that was proposed to the 2006 Congress was needlessly unfair to creators, leading ASMP and many other groups to seek changes when the bill was introduced.
Victor Perlman, ASMP

EPUK (Editorial Photographers United Kingdom & Ireland) believes that …
• Moral rights need to be implemented in full and made enforceable so that users of images are compelled to identify the creator as per European Library guidelines, helping to prevent creation of new orphan works as is the case in Germany.
• Although current law prohibits removal of identifying metadata it requires proof of intent to infringe. As human error, lack of care and software deficiencies routinely strip metadata proof is rarely possible, rendering the law unenforceable.
• A licensor of an orphan work will not know if minors depicted are wards of court or or otherwise protected. Model releases and exclusivity agreements will be ignored, creating liability for both the photographer and the licensing authority. Private or personal images at present protected may be licensed as orphans.
• Third party licensing will damage market value by setting a fee that does not take account of skill, cost of creation, exclusivity or value of a photographer’s reputation.
• The numerous provisions for statutory instruments are a carte blanche for future Ministers to change the rules significantly without proper consultation or Parliamentary debate.
• Unclaimed royalties will be treated as bona vacantia, diverting the creators’ income to the state.
• European Library guidelines that a non-responsive author does not make an orphan work have been ignored.
• European Library guidelines for a reasonable search are reduced to a small subset with no proposal for effective search protocols.
• The removal of exclusivity, the removal of moral right to objection and the UK licensing of work owned by aliens breaks our international obligations under the Berne Convention and TRIPS.
So where does EPUK stand with respect to the Digital Economy Bill?
We cannot accept blanket commercial licensing of orphan works. It sets up a free-input commercial supply channel that directly competes with and undermines our business.
We can accept some form of licensing or fair dealing exception that is limited to non-profit use within the non-commercial cultural sector. Precise drafting will be required to prevent use in competition with the commercial exploitation of the work.
We regard enforceable moral rights as a necessary and rational counter to any weakening of copyright holders’ exclusive rights.

We need an informal, low cost, quick, online method of enforcing rights and obtaining compensation for breaches. To deter infringement it is essential that the penalty for a breach is significantly greater than the lawful cost would have been, even if not all of the money charged to an infringer gets paid to the rights owner.