Flickr tricks

I sell my photographs through quite a number of agencies and I regularly get asked, "Don't people steal your images?"

Well ... no ... they don't actually. It does happen ... yes ... but it hasn't happened to me yet. Not that I'm aware of, anyway.

But any reputable agency will take steps to minimise the risk of theft. First, they will only show the image at small size and low resolution. So it isn't much use for any serious work. Then, on top of that, they will put a watermark on the image - a faint, transparent overlay of writing, lines or a copyright symbol.

That still doesn't stop people stealing them. My wife was in a seminar once where one of the presenters, in her PowerPoint presentation, used an image with an agency's watermark clearly visible. But such theft is small beer. And it demonstrates, to anyone in the know, that the presenter is a thief.

But be more careful if you post your images on Flickr or similar image-sharing internet sites. Some people, even professionals who should know better, post their images at full size and without watermarks.

And they get stolen.

Then the unfortunate photographer finds his/her images on sale at an agency under someone else's name and it is a headache to prove that you own the copyright, and get the images taken off.

Read about a recent case here

The moral of this story is, if you use Flickr (or similar) make sure your images are small, low-resolution ones and are watermarked. You can watermark them in Photoshop.

Better still ... don't use Flickr. What's the point?

4 comments:

Josephine said...

What's the point? What a silly question. What's the point of showing your art? What's the point of sharing information with the ones with the same passion as you? What's the point of learning? What's the point of knowing amazing people? What's the point of taking photographs anyway?

Such frustrated and sad people....

Josephine, again said...

Send you my photos? What's the point?

Alistair Scott said...

Thanks Josephine, even though you say my question is a silly one, and appear to be accusing me of being 'frustrated and sad' (have I read that right?).

You raise some interesting questions, and I think they’re important.

The subject’s too big to cover in a comment here so I’ll make a fuller blog post about it later today.

Alistair Scott said...

Send you my photos? What's the point?

I tried to explain. Discussion. Constructive criticism. Feedback. People helping each other to improve. We can all do that.

If you think your photos at ‘Art’ and all you want is Flickr-type comments about them, don’t bother.