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Image theft

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Sharon Packer
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Re: Image theft

Postby Sharon Packer on Sat Apr 10, 2010 8:11 pm

Diana,

I think I know her.
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Re: Image theft

Postby Diana Duffy on Sun Apr 11, 2010 5:41 am

Sharon, I can only hope it's her, and not another one just like her! :lol:
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Re: Image theft

Postby Barb Young on Sun Apr 11, 2010 10:10 am

This is all very interesting. I'm used to dealing with the local h/j and dressage folks, all of whom are aware after all these years of my copyright (after hours and hours of dealing with it just like all of you). I'm trying a new event, starting next weekend, and this discussion is making me do some hard thinking about how I can get this information clearly in the game up front. The clientele are mostly kids and business folks, who do this sport for a hobby, and are desperate (I'm told) for photos. So I'm going to try to do some verbage and copyright agreement click throughs and stuff like that to try to explain copyright up front. I don't know if it's possible. I'm also thinking of raising my prices some and including a small, digital file with a print. I think I have a lot of thinking and work to do this week!! I hate annoying people, whether it's their fault or mine, and this is a small community. Gotta love new adventures!!
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Re: Image theft

Postby Carol Lynn Coronios on Sun Apr 11, 2010 3:00 pm

Barb, last season I began to offer a small web image with a minimum order ($25 - price of my 5x7, smallest size I sell) when the customer became a fan on FB. Seems to be working well. I put a border around it as Michelle Rudland does -

OCHC09-7296FB.jpg
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Re: Image theft

Postby Bernard DeLierre on Tue Apr 13, 2010 11:58 am

Sandman596 wrote:Again, I know this girl, she never bought a thing.

At what point do you say enough?

Mark


Hi Mark,
I don't visit this forum often. I glanced at this thread in a email digest I receive and couldn't resist taking the time to applaud your efforts to stand up for your rights AND the rights of all content creators. Plus your discipline to register your images. You even beat me on on that level! I don't have the discipline to register my images on a regular basis and even less right after a horse show! That said, I've been an EPNet member for many years and have seen many conversations about this topic. I can't recall anybody doing what you're doing. Big applause!!!!!!! And by the way, I've stopped doing shows.

I agree with the folks suggesting you try the nice approach first via a friendly written request. If this request falls into deaf ears, contacting your lawyer to draft a stern letter that outlines the potential costs (including legal) fees IS the right thing to do. Unfortunately, too many photographers are afraid to do this because they are afraid of repercussions. I say: "why be afraid of repercussions from people who blatantly steal and refuse to comply AFTER being educated?" I agree with trying to educate people but we can get tired very quickly if we don't have the luxury of "educating" due to lack of time or don't do the same shows every year which means we don't deal with the same crowd on a regular basis. And by the way, sending such a letter doesn't mean you will drag the offenders to court. Or is that really what you want? :-)

This type of legal action gets the word out faster. Sometimes I'd like to take a bullhorn and scream: "If you like my images, buy them for the intended use or negotiate a rate for commercial uses! If you like them and refuse to buy and ignore watermarks and ignore legal notices on my website, then face the consequences!" None of your clients or anybody who can read will be able to drive your business into the ground because you stood up for rights. Everyone will simply have a higher degree of respect for you and your work.

Now that I've ranted, I will say that trying to educate 'amateur' photographers standing over your shoulder to shoot or the young generation who is growing up with Facebook is practically impossible. I believe we don't have a choice as photographers to include some type of digital file within our sales offerings. And in my opinion, you do want your images to be shared on Facebook and social media sites. This IS good for your business. You just want to make sure the proper tags are being used so you get credit and drive viewers to your site in order to increase your business.

Don't quit! Enjoy what you do and make the best of the situation.

Best wishes,

Bernard

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Re: Image theft

Postby Linda Finstad on Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:23 pm

I dont mind people sharing my show pictures on face book - I agree with others who say a low res image really has not much value - after each show I post about 24 pics in a face book album and very often these images are tagged and used by the people in them as their profile picture - I see this as added advertising and intrest in my work. I follow up with these people in a very friendly manner inviting them to go see the rest of the show pictures and think about buying one for their wall at home.

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Re: Image theft

Postby Terri Miller on Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:52 pm

Linda,

Just curious: do you track how many orders come in from FB traffic?

Remember, it's only advertising when it increases revenue. :mrgreen:
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Re: Image theft

Postby Linda Finstad on Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:04 pm

I have made several sales directly from face book - I have sold gift certificates at Christmas time and also had photo shoot enquiries that resulted in bookings all from face book - I love it - its free - its current and lots of my customers are on face book and its not just the kids who like to keep in touch this way.

In response to the issue of adding digital files as part of a package - I am still holding out - in that area and charge $50 each for high res digital files of show pictures. Addmitedly I dont sell very many but I explain very politely why they are expensive. I am sure some people will scan the hard copy pictues but I feel that life is too short to worry about it and hey there is another show next week.

 

Re: Image theft

Postby Sandman596 on Tue Jun 22, 2010 4:27 pm

Update:

The amount I have collected from 23 offenders has skyrocketed to a significant amount, with another 54 offenders to even be contacted. This could amount to be almost 25% of total income for the year. Amounts have ranged from $300 to $5400 per offender.

I have also done a few things to limit the exposure for the theft, which has actually had a direct improvement on my sales at the shows, so a double bonus. Two of the shows I had record sales compared to previous years. The others, very close to records. So far this spring with new methods and collection from the theft, a banner year.

 

Re: Image theft

Postby Sandman596 on Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:15 pm

Linda Finstad wrote:I dont mind people sharing my show pictures on face book - I agree with others who say a low res image really has not much value.
Update:

You set the value of your work. If you don't think it is worth it, then others won't was well.

My three smallest items I sell are the same price. My 4x6, 5x7 and a single websized image just for FB and such. The reason for that is it costs me the same to be there, to pay the photographers, the gas to get there, etc...

Come on folks, get your head on straight and figure out your true cost of doing business.

Think of it this way. Say you bake and sell cookies.

Assume that you have to make each order separately. If I were to ask you to bake 3 dozen cookies, or to only bake 4 cookies, the physical cost in ingredients between the two isn't very much. But to make each order, it will take just as much time and effort to make the 3 dozen and the 4 cookies when it comes to the mixing, the cost to heat the oven, the time to bake the cookies, the time to cool them, package them etc...

You would need to charge the same for the 4 cookies as the 3 dozen cookies to cover your true costs. I really hope some folks can understand that. Otherwise you are just throwing money away.

I offer the web sized only because that is what some folks want or need. It also is a good point to the thieves that they were offered a product that fit their needs except for being free. Which if I did that, why would anyone purchase anything and then why be in business?

Also, when it comes to this business, I know that there just are some customers that will only purchase the smallest prices item available, and then try to scan it make a larger print. I have seen it many times. Nature of the beast.

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Re: Image theft

Postby Barb Young on Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:07 am

Linda Finstad wrote:I dont mind people sharing my show pictures on face book - I agree with others who say a low res image really has not much value.


It has as much value as you put into it, and as much value as the people copying it aren't buying a photo....as much value as your being at the show all day, putting all those hours into sorting and editing and posting, insurance costs, equipment amortization, travel expense, on and on. I'm sorry, but every photo I produce that's good enough to be seen by anyone has all that value attached to it, not to mention my unique experience, talent and style. But mostly the value is at least as much as the minimum you could sell that photo for. People who steal photos are stealing that purchase price from you, so make sure it's well watermarked with your contact info and think of it as an ad, or go after the thief.
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Sharon Packer
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Re: Image theft

Postby Sharon Packer on Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:45 am

Well said, Barb. I ask offenders to pay the $ 25 for a FB image. Typically they remove the image(s). One defriended me. :bawling: All but one has apologized. That said, FB has been a great marketing tool. When I post photos in my announcement of show photos, I tag winners and allow them to use the FB photo. This has generated very, very nice sales. As long as FB is a means of advertising and generates sales, it's a winning method. There is going to be theft whether it's Facebook or not. I find my photos on trainer's websites with the big watermark across it. These aren't kids. These are professionals who know about usage rights. For the photos on which I place a higher potential commercial sales value, I now use Digimarc tracking. I'm not going to hide my photos. But I do put watermarking, and now I Digimarc those images that I feel have commercial sales value.
Last edited by Sharon Packer on Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:13 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Image theft

Postby Joan Davis on Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:54 am

Cant agree enough w what Barb and Sharon are saying here!

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Re: Image theft

Postby Diane Horton on Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:59 pm

So I just found 45 of my proofs on facebook. The thief was asked if she bought all 45 images, her reply "Ummm, nope. if I did, the copyright wouldn't be there. I took screen shots and then cropped them, hence the red line"
Then the friend said "haha i tried that but i couldnt get it to work lol"

So do I post on her faceook site or email privately? I want to publically say something to her, such as she will be receiving the invoice of $XXX Suggestions......

I'm seeing red right now. :angry:

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Re: Image theft

Postby Diane Horton on Mon Jun 28, 2010 3:48 pm

I'm sending a private email, stating what has been said in here over and over. I also suggested she wouldn't like it if her students didn't pay her (she is a trainer(?)) And she is not advertising for me but it makes her as a professional (?) trainer look bad to be stealing images.

I'm tempted to go back to mailing proofs like years ago, but people stole those too, just not as often. People used to complain they couldn't see them or "Proof" was obstructing the picture.

Was trying to make proofs easy to see to entice more sales, but phooey on that. :evil: Back to making them small and nasty looking. My web site will explain why the proofs will look so bad.
I'm ticked off enought to pack it all in.

Ya know, we knock those photog's who don't spend time going through their proofs.... I'm kinda getting why they don't. Though culling is mandatory, rethinking cropping and straightening, etc in the future for shows.

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