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Old 03-06-2009, 17:36   #1 (permalink)
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Cool To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Hi one and all!

I am keen to seek words of wisdom and advice or opinions from you, if I may please?

I am setting up a webpage, through which I am going to sell me photographs. The provider is ifp3.com. (Have a look...it is a fantastic site)!!!!!! Anyway, one of their facilities is a download dock. Once someone has paid for an image, I can place it in the download dock and they can download it once they have entered a unique passcode that I will supply them with.

My only issue is that they could replicate the image without my permission, once they have the jpeg. I also know that hard copy photographs can be copied, so should I really be worrying? I am thinking of asking customers to sign a form agreeing that they will not copy the image or share it without my permission, but that will not stop the less honest of us. On the flip side, using the download dock would save time and money for me and my customer, especially for overseas sales, as they can simply download the image, rather than me posting it out to them and then them waiting for the photograph to arrive.

If anyone has any thoughts or experiences they can share with me, I would REALLY appreciate it!

Many thanks in advance, Jonny

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Old 03-06-2009, 22:28   #2 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Welcome back, stranger

You are right - anything can be copied. Your best advice will come from those who are regularly selling images, but I think you should be not thinking about selling a picture, but selling a licence to use the image in controlled circumstances.

Some members have the mindset that once you sell a picture you might as well forget protecting it.
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Old 04-06-2009, 16:40   #3 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Hey there! Thanks for your welcome! I am so glad to be back. Life is back on track, so here I am!!

Thanks also for your advice! I totally get where you are coming from and I shall be specifying on my site that the prices cover a licence to use the photograph, not the photograph itself!

Thanks very much and I hope to see you soon! J
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Old 04-06-2009, 21:31   #4 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

It's very much your own call this one. You're right, in the fact that once the image is sold, unless it is to a company such as a newspaper for specific usage under a contract then you will have a very hard time knowing what is happening with that image.
It may help knowing what sort of images and for what target audience. You can not sell prints of your images to people who need to use your image for layouts or ads etc, as they will require the original for work as they will always change an image.
You may be as well to use a stock library if it is for that purpose. But they will take 50%ish of the sale price, however they will back you up if someone tries to illegally use your image. Used to be a great company called Digital Railroad, but sadly is no longer.
If you are selling single images to individuals to have them as prints then only sell them as prints, if they want them for use on the web too then send them a print and a web size file.
Basically be as careful as you can, but you will never stop someone who is hell bent on trying to abuse the system.
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Old 06-06-2009, 10:04   #5 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Paid for as in How?...
Who retains the copywrite for the image?...
If you sell the copywrite with the image, you have no control in how it is used or for what...

I have done some specialised shoots for certain places where I was happy to hand over everything I shot on the day as it would be of no use for me to keep it... such as Weddings etc.... but if you want to keep the copywrite, you must specify that you will be keeping the copywrite at the time of sale, and set out clearly how the image may be used, and, who by.

Good luck...

I have never thought of putting any of my stuff up for sale by web....
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Old 06-06-2009, 11:18   #6 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

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Who retains the copywrite for the image?...
If you sell the copywrite with the image, you have no control in how it is used or for what...
You always retain the copyright. What you are selling is the permission (licence) to use the image in a controlled way. This could be a single print to hang on a wall, or for distribution in a family. However, you usually don't have any control on what actually happens to it, it is just that if the licence agreement is breached and you find out, you do have some recourse.
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Old 06-06-2009, 11:56   #7 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

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Originally Posted by Dabhand16 View Post
You always retain the copyright. What you are selling is the permission (licence) to use the image in a controlled way.
In theory yes that is supposed to be the case, but in practice the photographer does sign off the copyright at times. For example if it is a commissioned shoot and the company commissioning has expressly asked to be the copyright holders. Or you are working full-time for a company and your job involves capturing images for them, then chances are the copyright would be owned by the company and not the photographer (but you would need to check your contract for this).

Also i have worked on quite a number of advertising shoots (both as producer and photographer assistant), and there are occasions when you are up against the clock/light and the photographer will throw you a camera and ask you to shoot around the scene for different angles. The photographer (for the shoot not you) will always retain copyright on those images. It's just like if anyone has ever assisted a photographer on a shoot, (the copyright is supposed to be kept by the guy who releases the shutter) but the amount of times that a photographer captures an image is very few (depending on the type of shoot), he will nearly always ask the assistant to fire the camera.

Copyright should be clear cut, but in several instances it is a very cloudy area.
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Old 06-06-2009, 13:19   #8 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Yes, You are quite right Lolyton. I was talking about the shots taken by the photographer for the photographer.

If you are employed to take pictures it is often the employer who will hold the copyright.
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Old 07-06-2009, 09:26   #9 (permalink)
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Re: To download, or not to download?!?!?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by lolyton View Post
It's just like if anyone has ever assisted a photographer on a shoot, (the copyright is supposed to be kept by the guy who releases the shutter) but the amount of times that a photographer captures an image is very few (depending on the type of shoot), he will nearly always ask the assistant to fire the camera.

Copyright should be clear cut, but in several instances it is a very cloudy area.
This is how I have worked... the official photographer (say at weddings) needs a "Second camera" to catch those shots that dont get caught... everyone sees the photographer and immediately starts posing, or does the "Wait until we get Grandma in on this one"....
I walk around the edges, catching the little boy under the table stuffing cake in his mouth, or the Groom and Best man, pints in hand, laughing in uproar at some dirty joke... (and trying not to shake with laughter myself...)

At the end, I just hand the official photographer a handful of memory cards and that is it....
Ok, so I take HUNDREDS of shots, and perhaps they dont all get in the "Official" album, but some make it into the second not-so-stuffy album
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