How to prevent photo from being used without permission?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by vvcarpio, Jul 22, 2017.

  1. vvcarpio

    vvcarpio No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I shoot for an architect who, along with the contractor, has a concern about the photos (which I took) being used without permission.

    Basically, two contractors were involved in the project. The first contractor, Contractor A, was replaced by Contractor B who eventually completed the project. (I'm not familiar with all the details but I understand there was "mis-information" with Contractor A so he had to go.)

    The concern is, if Contractor A finds the photos on the architect's website, there's no stopping Contractor A from using and showing the photos to his prospective clients and claiming the project is his. Or is there?

    I mentioned watermarking to the architect but I thought I'd ask here to see if anyone has encountered a similar situation and what precaution, if any, was taken.

    Thanks a lot.


     
  2. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2011
    Messages:
    5,332
    Likes Received:
    2,347
    Location:
    St. Louis
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    You have one option: Don't put them on the Internet. Otherwise you can't stop someone who wants the image from taking the image. Bottom line: If I can see it on my monitor I can take it and I can remove your watermark.

    The measures that you can take to disable downloading and to use watermarking are partially effective. They will deter some people from taking the photos. But they will not deter someone who knows what to do.

    Joe
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Gary A.

    Gary A. Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2014
    Messages:
    18,676
    Likes Received:
    5,965
    Location:
    Southern California
    Generally, If the image(s) is on the internet, there is absolutely no way to stop a person with even a small amount of computer competency from unauthorized used of an image.

    An online gallery which is password protected will provide some level of protection, but an image which is viewable by all is available for downloading by any computer competent person sans ethics.

    I am not an expert, hopefully an expert will jump in on this thread, I'm just giving the thread a bump.

    There are some techniques which will slow down and even stop a person lacking computer expertise, like right click protection, but I think a password firewall may be the easiest and best methodology. Password protection does not lend itself to mass advertising ... so there will be some weighing in on which is more important, image protection or marketing.

    What's to stop Contractor A from taking their own photos and using them?
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017
    • Like Like x 1
  4. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2013
    Messages:
    13,192
    Likes Received:
    3,209
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Interesting.
    If Contractor A was involved with the projects and have their own photos,
    then dependent upon the contract they would have full use to use *their own* photos.

    Contractor B is simply another, different contractor with their own separate contract.

    Essentially, to prevent the situation you mention, somewhere buried in the contract should be an exclusion of if the project was revoked under any circumstance then the contractor would not be allowed to use any likeness of the project (whatever that may be .. construction, concrete, who knows).

    But I doubt anything like that exists for photography related items in a contract.
    But like anything like this, refer to the contract as it contains *all* the answers. And if it doesn't refer to that, then that *is* the answer. But it may be different based on location, etc.
     
  5. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Messages:
    40,023
    Likes Received:
    15,009
    Location:
    USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Copyright the images with the US Copyright Office. Actually pay, and register and submit the images. THEN, later, Use Tineye, locate the infringement, and demand a STEEP payment for each unauthorized use. Of course...this involves some work on your part...but might make some financial reward for you if you're willing to invest time and money in doing all of the above.

    But uh, yeah...images are easy to steal, fairly easy to remove copyright watermarks, etc..
     
  6. vvcarpio

    vvcarpio No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2014
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I appreciate all the replies. I will show them to the architect. To add some more info, the purpose of the photos is to use them in an online article featuring the architect on a popular website, so they will be very visible and maybe easily searched. Also, if I understand the architect right, part of the concern (in addition to downloading the images) is something like Contractor A verbally telling his prospective clients to go look at this article in this popular website and saying those were his.
     
  7. Gary A.

    Gary A. Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2014
    Messages:
    18,676
    Likes Received:
    5,965
    Location:
    Southern California
    As opposed to a "copyright" ... how about stating "Built by Contractor B" or just having "Contractor B's" name on the photo. There is a point of diminishing returns on all this. I recognise the architect/engineer firm being very upset with Contract A, dumping a contractor in midstream is both expensive and extends the completion time of the project. But, while most/many/some/all of us would love to control the actions of others ... we can't.
     
  8. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2009
    Messages:
    40,337
    Likes Received:
    5,506
    Location:
    Iowa
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
  9. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    3,656
    Likes Received:
    471
    I'm not even sure why this is your problem. You made the images for someone else. That someone else can use them. If someone other than someone else uses it, it is his problem not yours. I come from the commercial photography business where we charged for time and expenses. The images belonged to the client. What they did with them was immaterial to me. Consider that as an approach to the problem.

    And if you care about someone using your photo, don't put it on the internet. I never put an image on the internet that belongs to a client. I could if I wanted to but it is easier to avoid any potential problems. If I put an image on the internet, it is one I made for myself and you can do whatever you want with it.
     
  10. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    Messages:
    6,268
    Likes Received:
    1,823
    Location:
    US
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    What's in your contract? is that with the architect? Did you license usage with the architect or the contractor(s)?

    If you licensed usage to the architect then only he/she is able to use the photos. Usage would need to be licensed with either/both contractor(s) for them to be able to use the photos.

    Then for publication there should be usage licensed with the magazine... I would imagine the first contractor could say whatever, but probably you and/or the architect need to be clear with the magazine which contractor should be credited. Give the magazine the proper information for which contractor did the work. That should help if the first one says he did the job, well, then its going to be in print that he didn't (or at least didn't complete it and isn't credited for the job).

    Get on American Society of Media Photographers - Homepage and look up contracts, licensing usage, etc. ASMP does webinars and there was one not too long ago on copyright. From what I understand you as the photographer automatically own copyright to what you photograph. However if the copyright is registered that's supposed to help in issuing a DMCA take down or pursuing violations and you can look up how to do that. Usually legally pursuing copyright violation is probably not going to be worth the legal fees/expenses, court costs, etc. but at least issuing a take down could stop the copyright violation.

    But if you license usage in a contract then you can get payment for pictures that are going 'out there'. And if you and/or the architect do likewise with the magazine, you'll be paid for publication.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017
  11. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    Messages:
    6,268
    Likes Received:
    1,823
    Location:
    US
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The images would belong to the client (the architect) if this is 'work for hire', meaning taking photos is part of your regular job.

    If that's the case then the architect needs to license usage of the photos to the magazine, and it would be up to the architect's office to learn how to register copyright and license usage, etc.
     
  12. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2009
    Messages:
    40,337
    Likes Received:
    5,506
    Location:
    Iowa
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit


    I too did commercial photography.
    I retained ownership of my copyrights as well as charging for my time, talent, and applicable expenses.

    Clients bought a use license from me that allowed them only very specific usage of my copyrighted images.
    If they used my images beyond the use license terms they were infringing my copyright.
    My attorney would send them a cease & desist letter and if the client was amenable we would then enter negotiations for them to pay for the non-authorized usage (copyright infringement) and an additional use license if they wanted to continue using the image(s).
    If the client was not amenable to negotiating my attorney would file an infringement action is US Federal Court.
    Over the years all such issues were settled, in my favor, before we had to go to court.
     

Share This Page