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Protecting a good photo

urwise2 6 18 United States
9 Jan 2013 9:38PM
In todays world of internet, clouds, etc. I am concerned about protecting the ownership of a few of my favorite pics. As I gazed through the photo lessons on occasion I find a photo or two used as an example to drive home a lesson point with a copyright overlay on the pic. Can anyone explain to me how this is done so that I might do the same. I realize that once you release a pic into the mainstream or public forum you loose the exclusive rights to ownership unless it is copyrighted.

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LVanDhal 5 126 1 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2013 10:26PM
sorry I don't have any advice to offer but i will be taking a keen interest if anyone else has , as i lost control of a photograph last year due to its popularity with pinterest users, Originally i had created the content for a competition entry( on another site) and although the image did not win or even make a place, it caught a lot of attention, going "mildly" viral, what I found was that people are now plastering it on blogs, tumblr, etc and claiming as their own work, its then that i discovered its harder to prove you are the owner of an image than I thought.
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
9 Jan 2013 10:50PM

Quote:once you release a pic into the mainstream or public forum you loose the exclusive rights to ownership unless it is copyrighted.

Not so but I won't go into it here.

By starting a thread about copyright and the internet, you'll soon receive a heap of answers regarding how copyright works.

The only way to avoid the possibility of your image being copied/stolen/downloaded is to not post it in the first place.

Placing a logo or watermark upon it won't prevent anyone from taking it if they choose to do so and logos are easily removed. Many, if not most, people on here could remove one in seconds.
urwise2 6 18 United States
9 Jan 2013 10:50PM
I like the copyright overlay approach so I am waiting for someone to guide me in the right direction as to how it is created.
9 Jan 2013 10:55PM
Theres an article here , most software packages would have a similar approach so if you dont have Photoshop there are some free editing packages that could provide the basics for this.
urwise2 6 18 United States
9 Jan 2013 11:01PM
I agree with the comment concerning how easy it is to remove a copyright logo or watermark but one thing that cannot be removed is the date of the original posting. If the dated posting showing a copyrighted image is then counterfeited or altered from its original form then that is not only a violation of copyright but could be an even more serious legal issue for the responsible party.
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
9 Jan 2013 11:07PM
If someone wants to reuse your image in some way, then they will do so, regardless of dated postings, logos or whatever else you come up with to prove ownership.

I've recently had an image from my website being displayed via hotlinking on an arabian site about cats and their colours. They'd very kindly left my logo intact.
urwise2 6 18 United States
9 Jan 2013 11:12PM
Thank you for the article link. It was very informative.
urwise2 6 18 United States
9 Jan 2013 11:18PM
I understand that each country has their own version of what they consider intellectual property rights. Copyright is not a fail safe method but it will slow down those who have a conscious and live in countries that adhere to laws that respect authorship and intellectual content and property rights. It is the individuals choice to follow up and prosecute or not depending on the cost benefits.
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
9 Jan 2013 11:48PM
I think that you're misunderstanding the meaning of the trrm 'copyright.'
Copyright is automaticallly yours if you took the image. You don't need to write something on it for it to become copywritten to you.
mikehit 8 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
10 Jan 2013 12:04AM
In the US (like UK and most other countries) you have copyright as soon as you press the shutter. If I recall correctly, one difference in the US is that if you register the copyright, this opens up the possibilities of big wins in the courts - without registering your potential restitution is much less (this may explain at least some of the misunerstandings on internet fora).
10 Jan 2013 1:45AM
You can embed your info and a copyright notice into the exif of an image through your camera (model dependant) or by going into File>Info in Photoshop. However, this can easily be stripped (at least on basic views), but i would advise anyone to do this where possible as having your info there may not deter someone, but can prove ownership. I think most folk nicking a pic wouldnt even look at Exif.

I once bought a camera second hand and never got round to changing the settings on the camera. I was selected as a winner, but they contacted me to question the ownership of the image as it had the exif stamp of another photographer. Fortunately the person i bought the camera from was a friend and the issue was quickly cleared up and my win was allowed

Like i said, its not a fool proof way to protect an image, but if your camera allows you to enter an exif stamp or you can enter it on photoshop, them at least you have a chance of proving ownership.

Another way is NEVER throw away the original image. Doesnt matter how much you edit or play around with an image, try to keep an original and if possible a PSD of all the layers of edits. Every stage of work is recorded and unique
urwise2 6 18 United States
10 Jan 2013 2:21AM
Those are excellant ideas and should be considered by anyone who values their work. To post your work without affording yourself protection is like purchasing real estate without ever buying insurance to protect it. Taking the little extra time to safe guard yourself is again like saying it is a pain to pay the insurance premium but it sure is nice to have the policy when you need it.
urwise2 6 18 United States
10 Jan 2013 2:31AM
I remember many years ago when I was creating designs and printing Tee Shirts the correct way to assign the copyright was to put the copyright symbol the date and then your name or company. I recall something about the length of time afforded to you under the copyright before it needed to be renewed was different depending on if you used your name or a company. As I said before this was many years ago that I did the research into this but for some reason 20 years of protection seems to come to mind before renewal.
10 Jan 2013 3:00AM
Although basic (and somewhat updated/amended in terms in recent years through various countries, websites and agreements), this is a guide to UK Copyright for photography

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