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Watermarks - copyright, year

 
 
Peter Chant
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      02-21-2011
Chaps,

if I add a copyright watermark to an image do I use the year I took the
photo or the year I did the digital darkroom work on it or when I first put
it on-line?

Pete

--
http://www.petezilla.co.uk
 
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John Passaneau
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      02-22-2011
On 2/21/2011 6:39 PM, Peter Chant wrote:
> Chaps,
>
> if I add a copyright watermark to an image do I use the year I took the
> photo or the year I did the digital darkroom work on it or when I first put
> it on-line?
>
> Pete
>

I believe it's the year you wish to assert your copyright privileges. So
any one of those dates would be appropriate. But I would choose the date
you made the image public.

John Passaneau
 
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Gordon Freeman
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      02-22-2011
Peter Chant <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> if I add a copyright watermark to an image do I use the year I took
> the photo or the year I did the digital darkroom work on it or when I
> first put it on-line?


Although copyright exists from the moment of creation, traditionally the
copyright period runs from the date of first publication (ie. displaying
it in public) so that is the date people have normally used in copyright
notices. However this practice only existed because copyright in photos
only used to last for a fairly limited period (50 years IIRC) so you
would want to maximise it by dating the picture as late as possible.

Nowadays in most countries photographic copyright lasts until long after
your death (bringing it in line with book authors) so the date you put
on it is pretty academic, but don't date it later than first publication
since you would have a hard time convincing a court in a copyright case
if the infringing person could show they had been distributing your
images earlier than the date you are claiming copyright from!
 
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Vance
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      02-22-2011
On Feb 21, 8:49*pm, (E-Mail Removed) (Floyd L. Davidson) wrote:
> Gordon Freeman <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> >Nowadays in most countries photographic copyright lasts until long after
> >your death (bringing it in line with book authors) so the date you put
> >on it is pretty academic, but don't date it later than first publication
> >since you would have a hard time convincing a court in a copyright case
> >if the infringing person could show they had been distributing your
> >images earlier than the date you are claiming copyright from!

>
> Only in a country that does not follow the Berne
> Convention, which specifically places no legal
> significance on any copyright mark. *It could be dated
> in the future... and there would be no significance in a
> court.
>
> --
> Floyd L. Davidson <http://www.apaflo.com/floyd_davidson>
> Ukpeagvik (Barrow, Alaska) * * * * * * *(E-Mail Removed)


I simply use the creation date for more, or less, straight
photography. For images where I have done something like compositing
I use the date the image is finalized.

Vance
 
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Peter Chant
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      02-22-2011
Floyd L. Davidson wrote:

> Peter Chant <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>Chaps,
>>
>>if I add a copyright watermark to an image do I use the year I took the
>>photo or the year I did the digital darkroom work on it or when I first
>>put it on-line?

>
> All of them are probably technically and legally valid,
> but it may depend on the laws of the country where you
> live.
>
> The instant you click the shutter, according to the
> Berne Convention which the laws of almost all countries
> are based on, an image is automatically copyrighted.
> The Convention does not allow there to be any formal
> requirements... but some countries do require exactly
> that. Some countries might, for example, require
> registration, some might require the item be marked as
> copyrighted, and (in the US) it may require that an
> image be "fixed in a tangible medium of expression".
>


As far as I am aware in the UK. I press the shutter and there is no need to
register.

> Obviously, whatever the formality required, once the
> requirment is met your image is copyrighted, and that
> is the earliest date that would be appropriate. Just
> keep in mind that there may be no requirement at all to
> mark it as copyrighted (that is true in the US), and if
> so there is no distinction between a "correct" date and
> any random date you might choose!
>
> However, consider that in the US and most countries if
> you modify a copyrighted work of art you are creating a
> "derivative work", which is also copyrighted (in the US
> that is automatic the instant it is "fixed in a tangible
> medium"). Hence if you edit an image, each intermediate
> stage that is saved to a file is automatically
> copyrighted at that instant. That would also apply to
> posting a copy of it to a web site, or to printing it.
>


That's what I wondered. I post process most things I'd put on line and I
treat the digital darkroom stuff as equally important to originally taking
the image. I've just put a shot or two up that were taken last year but I
did the work on this weekend.

> Hence an image originally made in 2009, might have been
> edited in 2010 for use on the web, and the intermediate
> file may have been used to print the file in 2011. It
> would not be incorrect to mark the print as "copyright
> 2009, 2010, and 2011".
>


I see what you mean. OTOH, just using the last date might make some sense,
as even if 2009 has expired (in 2060!) 2010 and 2011 might be extant. But
as you say, not wrong.

--
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Peter Chant
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      02-22-2011
Floyd L. Davidson wrote:

> Works for me too.
>
> I use GIMP, and have a Python script for copyright
> notices. The default Scheme scripting language is has
> been stripped of most facilities, such a file and date
> handling. Python allowed me to go look for a RAW file
> with the same name and extract a creation date from it.
> Hence that's the default assuming it can find the RAW
> file, or otherwise if it can find Exif data in the image
> file, and if that doesn't work it just uses the current
> year. Or of course I can manually type something else
> into it.


Funnily enough, I spent a bit of time on Saturday making my python script
for the same purpose. As of yet it does not touch EXIF nor use the file
timestamp - its not as advanced as yours. A script just makes it simple to
apply and consistent.

>
> Whatever, the original point was that it has absolutely
> no legal status or bearing at all. Putting a copyright
> notice on a photograph can be advertizing or it can be
> used as a warning to those who might not realize someone
> specifically owns it. But a court won't care if it is
> there or if it is accurate.
>


My point was that although I've shied away from watermarks before and I
_might_ for example decide in the future to put _some_ things out for
example under the Creative Commons, at present I'm undecided and two things
would annoy me:

1. Commercial use without asking.
2. Someone else passing of my photos as their own.

So, as in your example its a little hint that they are mine.

Another thing that annoyed me was the discussion on orphan works:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/02..._orphan_works/

....especially the discussion of the question on whether amateur photos
should automatically be considered orphan works.

Pete



--
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tony cooper
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      02-23-2011
On Tue, 22 Feb 2011 23:41:49 +0000, Peter Chant
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>
>My point was that although I've shied away from watermarks before and I
>_might_ for example decide in the future to put _some_ things out for
>example under the Creative Commons, at present I'm undecided and two things
>would annoy me:


I participate in some groups where images are posted and people
comment on, or critique, the photographs.

I can see using an unobtrusive watermark if the photographer is
concerned about the image being hijacked, but I see far too many
obscuring watermarks plastered over images in these groups. How can
anyone critique or comment on a photo that has been disfigured with
such a watermark?

Where I do see the need of an obscuring watermark is a "proof" type of
shot offered to the subject (or the subject's family) in anticipation
of an order for prints being placed.

The funny thing about photographers is that they will spend quite a
bit of time cloning out distracting bits from a shot, and then put in
an even-more distracting watermark. Like a watermark doesn't draw the
eye just like a trash can does?
--
Tony Cooper - Orlando, Florida
 
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Peter Chant
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      02-23-2011
tony cooper wrote:

>
> I can see using an unobtrusive watermark if the photographer is
> concerned about the image being hijacked, but I see far too many
> obscuring watermarks plastered over images in these groups. How can
> anyone critique or comment on a photo that has been disfigured with
> such a watermark?



I've tried being subtle.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/59714310@N06/5466714450/

However, for this photo putting it top left would have been better.

--
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PeterN
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      02-24-2011
On 2/22/2011 2:10 AM, Floyd L. Davidson wrote:

>
> Whatever, the original point was that it has absolutely
> no legal status or bearing at all. Putting a copyright
> notice on a photograph can be advertizing or it can be
> used as a warning to those who might not realize someone
> specifically owns it. But a court won't care if it is
> there or if it is accurate.
>


Not quite. While the copyright exists from the instant of creation of
the image, the notification serves multiple functions:
Copyright enforcement rights can be lost through lack of enforcement:
The notice serves as evidence that the holder intends to enforce;
the stealing of an image with a notice shows evidence of malice and
could subject the violator to punitive damages;
creates a presumption that the enforcer is the holder of the right.

--
Peter
 
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J. Clarke
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      02-24-2011
In article <4d6668c4$0$5677$(E-Mail Removed)-secrets.com>,
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) says...
>
> On 2/22/2011 2:10 AM, Floyd L. Davidson wrote:
>
> >
> > Whatever, the original point was that it has absolutely
> > no legal status or bearing at all. Putting a copyright
> > notice on a photograph can be advertizing or it can be
> > used as a warning to those who might not realize someone
> > specifically owns it. But a court won't care if it is
> > there or if it is accurate.
> >

>
> Not quite. While the copyright exists from the instant of creation of
> the image, the notification serves multiple functions:
> Copyright enforcement rights can be lost through lack of enforcement:


That's trademark. Copyright, under current US law, cannot be "lost".

> The notice serves as evidence that the holder intends to enforce;
> the stealing of an image with a notice shows evidence of malice and
> could subject the violator to punitive damages;


Under US law you can't collect punitive damages for copyright unless you
registered the copyright. Putting a notice on has no effect in that
regard.

> creates a presumption that the enforcer is the holder of the right.





 
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