This is why your company needs an experienced marketer on staff. Real marketing directors have an understanding of intellectual property laws. Photographs, fonts, illustrations, and other design elements found online are not free for you to use, especially for commercial purposes.

via Brand’s Anatomy.

Recommended Posts


  1. I think this may apply to photographers too…..

    Checking out photographer’s blogs/portfolios recently I notice tons (most?) using unlicensed/uncredited music in their videos and slideshows.

    I know these same photogs would be pissed to find their unlicensed/uncredited images on a band’s website. So, why do they (we) feel it’s ok to use their music for our own commercial interests?

  2. I agree! Everyone in a creative field should study up on rights and usage. Get permission!

  3. I know I would be unhappyto say the least if I found an image or more of mine being used by any business to further theirs. I like the point made regarding unlicensed music for videos and slideshows. Which begs to ask the question; is the person using the music to attrack customers/viewers or the images used in a slide show.

    I worked hard to find a photo viewer for my website, it is not the easiest to work with but protects my work a bit form being , copied, saved as, downloaded, etc. I am still educating myslef to know how I can protect my work and may be I can pass it on to someone.

    This is a great follow up to the post on the leak regarding the meeting and formation of new copyright laws. Great read too!

    • @Ed Hamlin,

      No real way in protecting people from grabbing your images, as they can simple do a print-screen of the image and thereby bypassing all the mouse-click controls implemented on the website.

      The best way that I have found so far is to save the image at JPG-10 quality, not larger than 800 pixels on the longest side and also to print one’s name on top of the photo.

  4. Here’s an idea.

    Let’s *triple* the budget of the Copyright Office.

    They can use the extra money to set up an automated licensing system where, if somebody does something like this, the rightsholder submits a report, and the licensing system sends the infringer an invoice, with the amount of the invoice being based on a standard model (and adjusted for inflation.) The invoice includes a fixed transaction free to help pay the ongoing costs of the system and the rest is based on a consensus-constructed fee structure. The licensing system is responsible for collections, which saves the rightsholder a lot of transaction costs for what really should be fixed overhead.

    The infringer can pay it, or not. If they pay, the matter is resolved. If they want ongoing use rights, they can so indicate on their payment form and the rightsholder can either accept an ongoing license fee, or not. If the rightsholder says no, any future use is subject to significant civil penalties as well as additional mandatory licensing fees. (We want rightsholders to be able to grant exclusive licenses, after all.)

    If they *don’t* pay, the rightsholder can sue them, or not. If they do sue, and they win, and they prove that they tried to use the automatic licensing system to resolve the matter, then they get a statutory minimum award of, let’s say, $10,000 per work infringed plus attorney’s fees and costs. (Not per *use,* per *work.*) The current system of calculating statutory damages is a total joke: even brilliant and honest judges (and we do have plenty of them, believe it or not) arrive at wildly different statutory damage results in these cases.

    This is essentially the “send ’em an invoice and see if they pay” technique which many rightsholders use for a first response to infringement, only with teeth. Obviously it would need some refining (and that fee structure is going to be bitter) but I think it’s got possibilities. It’ll never happen, but it’s fun to think about.

  5. Just out of school I have chosen to be a wedding photographer as my “side job” while I try to get started in the photography that I actually enjoy (AMWPhotos | Boston Wedding, Portrait and Event Photography). I mention this only because this is the industry that has a ridiculous tendency to grab music like they own it along with any other protected material that they can. I have been appalled at the lack of knowledge level of ignorance that wedding photographers have about licensing and copyright.

Comments are closed for this article!