How to protect people from scanning your work

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Sharonbo, Feb 16, 2010.

  1. Sharonbo

    Sharonbo TPF Noob!

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    Hello all,
    I am very new to all of this. My problem is, how do photographer protect people from scanning photos?
    I have already had this happen. They buy a couple photos, scan and reprint so they do not need to purchase anymore from me.
    How do other photographer prevent people from just buying a few photos and scanning to make packages for themselves?
    Any help would be appreciated.
    I am so frustrated!
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    I think the first step is education. Most people probably don't realize that this is illegal, so you need to educate them.
    You can mark the back of the photo with copyright notification. My lab uses Kodak professional paper which already has 'do not copy' on the back.

    That should hopefully cover the honest people. But if people are bent on ripping you off, then it's going to be hard to stop them.

    One way to deal with that, is to structure your pricing so that you don't rely too much print sales. Charge more for your initial fee. Charge more per print etc.
     
  3. cirekoy

    cirekoy TPF Noob!

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    With desktop scanners so cheap and the average public's views on copyright becoming more and more "lax", there's no avoiding this. I'd suggest charging for a CD of the imagery...customers that really want to do their own printing will do so no matter what. I know a lot of photographers that are relying on print sales less and less; some don't even offer prints anymore and just burn CDs/DVDs!

    You could also offer larger prints or a more unique product line (e.g. a photo on canvas) that a customer would not be able to print out on their desktop printer, and might not know to look for on their own.
     
  4. ghache

    ghache TPF Noob!

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    i usually show them my sigp228 and tell them they owe me money.
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Textured prints help, they don't produce very good copies if scanned.

    That usually means having accesss to a pro lab like Miller's Professional Imaging or H&H.
     
  6. cirekoy

    cirekoy TPF Noob!

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    Also keep in mind that legal threats, etc. are all well and good...but it normally isn't worth arguing over and having that (ex)customer bad-mouth you to his or her friends. It's just bad PR. Better that they hire you again and you miss out on the print revenue than they never hire you again and talk bad about you because you "threatened" them. It doesn't matter who is in the right, their perception is what is important from a marketing/PR perspective.

    This is one of those "pick your fights" carefully topics, in my opinion.
     
  7. gardy90

    gardy90 TPF Noob!

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    i would go with a S&W snub:p
     
  8. Jamie71

    Jamie71 TPF Noob!

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    I agree, Textured Prints. Millers Lab, Mpixpro and Whcc all offer this service. I think the prints look pretty neat with texture too :)
     
  9. jnm

    jnm TPF Noob!

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    I'd just take how much you want to make on prints per shoot, roll it into the price, and automatically include a CD or DVD with reproduction rights for personal usage. you could go the route of selling the rights separately but people may just view it as you trying to make money for something they expect anyways.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    So, what do you do when the client has an 5:4 print made from a 3:2 image off the DVD you gave them, doesn't allow for the difference is aspect ratio, and figures some how you screwed up, not them? And then show all their firends and family, "your mistake". :D
     
  11. erichards

    erichards TPF Noob!

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    I have in the past sold the DVD of pictures to people as part of a package price along with a copyright release. Explain this is a release for them to print the pictures, however you still own the copyright so you can still advertise etc. with the pictures. This allows them to print pictures with out violating copyright laws and you still own the images. Also, recommend a good print shop and if there is a resolution limitation on the images let them know. This way they should (most of the time) get good images off of the disk that you have sold them.
     
  12. jnm

    jnm TPF Noob!

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    nobody that has ever printed a picture in their life is going to say you screwed up and made a mistake, ratios are what they are.
     

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