Preventing Rip-Off of My Photos on DVDs

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by One4All, Jun 14, 2006.

  1. One4All

    One4All Guest

    I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    enjoyment & partly for my own ego.

    Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.

    What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    magazines, art prints, etc.)?

    Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    print purposes?

    My system is Macintosh G5, OS 10.3.9 (Panther). If more info needed,
    let me know.
    One4All, Jun 14, 2006
    #1
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  2. One4All

    Mxsmanic Guest

    One4All writes:

    > I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >
    > Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    > may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    > registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    > cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >
    > What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    > their format & file size, could use them for their own gain.


    Yes. Not necessarily legally, but in practical terms, they could
    certainly do so.

    > I know they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    > they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    > magazines, art prints, etc.)?


    It depends on the standards of the person using them. Even very tiny
    photos can be used on posters if the person producing the poster is
    satisfied with the result. A lot of really bad images are used to
    make money. I've seen large 8x10 postcards that had very visible
    artifacts showing that the original image was of low resolution--and
    yet they still made money.

    > Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    > a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    > print purposes?


    There isn't any. The risk of it being used in print is always there.

    One of the drawbacks to having photos in digital form is that it's
    very easy to use them for almost anything. Paper prints are hard to
    reproduce without large losses in quality, but with digital files you
    can do anything.

    --
    Transpose mxsmanic and gmail to reach me by e-mail.
    Mxsmanic, Jun 14, 2006
    #2
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  3. On 14 Jun 2006 15:42:42 -0700, One4All <> wrote:
    > I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >
    > Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    > may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    > registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    > cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >
    > What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    > their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    > they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    > they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    > magazines, art prints, etc.)?
    >
    > Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    > a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    > print purposes?


    Unless you're talking about HDTV sets, a TV is pretty low resolution.
    Downsample to 800x600, more than enough for standard TV (and reasonable
    for a computer monitor). Even at 4x6, that's not going to be a very good
    print.

    You probably could even go as low as 640x480.

    -dms
    Daniel Silevitch, Jun 15, 2006
    #3
  4. One4All

    Dmac Guest

    Mxsmanic wrote:
    > One4All writes:
    >
    >
    >>I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    >>share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    >>highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    >>think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    >>enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >>
    >>Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    >>may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    >>registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    >>cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >>
    >>What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    >>their format & file size, could use them for their own gain.

    >
    >
    > Yes. Not necessarily legally, but in practical terms, they could
    > certainly do so.
    >
    >
    >>I know they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    >>they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    >>magazines, art prints, etc.)?

    >
    >
    > It depends on the standards of the person using them. Even very tiny
    > photos can be used on posters if the person producing the poster is
    > satisfied with the result. A lot of really bad images are used to
    > make money. I've seen large 8x10 postcards that had very visible
    > artifacts showing that the original image was of low resolution--and
    > yet they still made money.
    >
    >
    >>Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    >>a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    >>print purposes?

    >
    >
    > There isn't any. The risk of it being used in print is always there.
    >
    > One of the drawbacks to having photos in digital form is that it's
    > very easy to use them for almost anything. Paper prints are hard to
    > reproduce without large losses in quality, but with digital files you
    > can do anything.
    >



    Sadly have to agree with Manic here. Once you put even 640x480 images
    into digital display, you have no protection against theft. Even
    Internet images get stolen and put to uses you never imagined when you
    decided to share your pictures.

    One way to make it harder for the image thieves - those blokes with
    masks, lurking in the shadows of Usenet and your friend's lounge rooms -
    is to compile a slide show into an Executable file. This way it gets
    seen but the images are all part of the one file which has to be reverse
    engineered to get the images out of it.

    Otherwise, do as I do and only put "disposable" images into digital
    display or on your web site and the rest distribute only on canvas which
    poses substantial hurdles for image thieves to copy.

    --
    From Douglas...
    My photographic site: http://www.douglasjames.com.au
    Canvas Archival and Metallic Prints: http://www.canvasphotos.com.au
    Dmac, Jun 15, 2006
    #4
  5. One4All

    Stewy Guest

    In article <>,
    "One4All" <> wrote:

    > I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >
    > Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    > may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    > registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    > cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >
    > What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    > their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    > they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    > they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    > magazines, art prints, etc.)?
    >
    > Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    > a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    > print purposes?
    >
    > My system is Macintosh G5, OS 10.3.9 (Panther). If more info needed,
    > let me know.


    Exactly what do you expect these potential felons to do with your
    pictures? My guess is most people will skim the disc once then toss it
    in a drawer (if you're lucky) or toss it in the garbage (if you're not)
    - the latter would mean the general population will get access to your
    marketable pics (that you haven't actually made money on...yet)

    Format pictures to monitor resolution 1024x768 is average these days.

    Add a watermark.

    Use maximum compression.
    Stewy, Jun 15, 2006
    #5
  6. One4All

    One4All Guest

    Thanks to all for some very good suggestions. This info is what I
    needed.
    One4All, Jun 15, 2006
    #6
  7. One4All

    Mxsmanic Guest

    Daniel Silevitch writes:

    > Unless you're talking about HDTV sets, a TV is pretty low resolution.


    Even HDTV is very poor compared to still images.

    --
    Transpose mxsmanic and gmail to reach me by e-mail.
    Mxsmanic, Jun 15, 2006
    #7
  8. One4All

    Mxsmanic Guest

    Stewy writes:

    > Exactly what do you expect these potential felons to do with your
    > pictures?


    Anything for which they'd normally be required to obtain permission,
    presumably--resulting in a loss of revenue for the photographer.

    > Add a watermark.


    Watermarks won't prevent image theft, even though adding them degrades
    image quality slightly.

    --
    Transpose mxsmanic and gmail to reach me by e-mail.
    Mxsmanic, Jun 15, 2006
    #8
  9. One4All

    Pete D Guest

    "Dmac" <> wrote in message
    news:eR0kg.9537$...
    > Mxsmanic wrote:
    >> One4All writes:
    >>
    >>
    >>>I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    >>>share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    >>>highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    >>>think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    >>>enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >>>
    >>>Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    >>>may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    >>>registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    >>>cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >>>
    >>>What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    >>>their format & file size, could use them for their own gain.

    >>
    >>
    >> Yes. Not necessarily legally, but in practical terms, they could
    >> certainly do so.
    >>
    >>
    >>>I know they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size
    >>>that
    >>>they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    >>>magazines, art prints, etc.)?

    >>
    >>
    >> It depends on the standards of the person using them. Even very tiny
    >> photos can be used on posters if the person producing the poster is
    >> satisfied with the result. A lot of really bad images are used to
    >> make money. I've seen large 8x10 postcards that had very visible
    >> artifacts showing that the original image was of low resolution--and
    >> yet they still made money.
    >>
    >>
    >>>Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    >>>a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    >>>print purposes?

    >>
    >>
    >> There isn't any. The risk of it being used in print is always there.
    >>
    >> One of the drawbacks to having photos in digital form is that it's
    >> very easy to use them for almost anything. Paper prints are hard to
    >> reproduce without large losses in quality, but with digital files you
    >> can do anything.
    >>

    >
    >
    > Sadly have to agree with Manic here. Once you put even 640x480 images into
    > digital display, you have no protection against theft. Even Internet
    > images get stolen and put to uses you never imagined when you decided to
    > share your pictures.
    >
    > One way to make it harder for the image thieves - those blokes with masks,
    > lurking in the shadows of Usenet and your friend's lounge rooms - is to
    > compile a slide show into an Executable file. This way it gets seen but
    > the images are all part of the one file which has to be reverse engineered
    > to get the images out of it.


    Not actually that hard to do Doug by just about anyone.

    >
    > Otherwise, do as I do and only put "disposable" images into digital
    > display or on your web site and the rest distribute only on canvas which
    > poses substantial hurdles for image thieves to copy.
    >
    > --
    > From Douglas...
    > My photographic site: http://www.douglasjames.com.au
    > Canvas Archival and Metallic Prints: http://www.canvasphotos.com.au
    Pete D, Jun 15, 2006
    #9
  10. One4All

    Andrew Guest

    "One4All" <> ruminated:
    >What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    >their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    >they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    >they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    >magazines, art prints, etc.)?


    To allay your fears, I recommend going to a photography site
    like flickr.com, to see what amazing, excellent photography
    people are willing to share at reasonably high
    resolution. Now, compare those photos to yours. If yours are
    far superior, then you may have something to worry about. If
    yours are at the same level or worse, then you really do not
    have to worry about someone using your images for commercial
    purposes. If they wanted to infringe on someone else's
    copyrights, they could pick from a large number of photos
    already available on the internet, which are far easier to
    obtain and already tagged for easy search.

    While i wouldn't feel great if someone were using my photos
    without permission, it's not all bad, as more people would
    get to see my photography, and it's not taking away money
    that I would have made otherwise.

    Andrew
    Andrew, Jun 15, 2006
    #10
  11. Andrew <> wrote:
    : "One4All" <> ruminated:
    : >What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    : >their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    : >they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    : >they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    : >magazines, art prints, etc.)?

    : To allay your fears, I recommend going to a photography site
    : like flickr.com, to see what amazing, excellent photography
    : people are willing to share at reasonably high
    : resolution. Now, compare those photos to yours. If yours are
    : far superior, then you may have something to worry about. If
    : yours are at the same level or worse, then you really do not
    : have to worry about someone using your images for commercial
    : purposes. If they wanted to infringe on someone else's
    : copyrights, they could pick from a large number of photos
    : already available on the internet, which are far easier to
    : obtain and already tagged for easy search.

    : While i wouldn't feel great if someone were using my photos
    : without permission, it's not all bad, as more people would
    : get to see my photography, and it's not taking away money
    : that I would have made otherwise.

    : Andrew

    One further thought. Be sure to keep an original copy with all the exif
    data intact. Then if you discover that someone has published your photo
    without permission you have proof that the image is originally yours and
    the date, time and such can back up your claim. At least if someone else
    made a profit from your work without permission you would have proof in an
    attempt to recover damages from the perpetrator.

    Another reason to keep a copy of all your originals direct from the camera
    on some form of archiving device (CD, DVD-R, etc).

    Randy

    ==========
    Randy Berbaum
    Champaign, IL
    Randy Berbaum, Jun 15, 2006
    #11
  12. One4All

    Guest

    Dmac wrote:
    > Mxsmanic wrote:
    > > One4All writes:
    > >
    > >
    > >>I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > >>share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > >>highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > >>think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > >>enjoyment & partly for my own ego.


    > One way to make it harder for the image thieves - those blokes with
    > masks, lurking in the shadows of Usenet and your friend's lounge rooms -
    > is to compile a slide show into an Executable file. This way it gets
    > seen but the images are all part of the one file which has to be reverse
    > engineered to get the images out of it.


    That means that the images can only be viewed on a computer, possibly
    negating the point of produced a DVD, which may be viewed on a TV with
    a suitable DVD player . It might also be tricky to get the same DVD to
    work with different operating systems.

    It also does very little to prevent copying the images. Once the image
    is displayed on a PC screen it can be copied, saved, and reprinted,
    albeit at lowish resolution.

    --
    Hywel
    , Jun 15, 2006
    #12
  13. One4All

    Marvin Guest

    One4All wrote:
    > I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >
    > Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    > may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    > registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    > cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >
    > What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    > their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    > they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    > they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    > magazines, art prints, etc.)?
    >
    > Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    > a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    > print purposes?
    >
    > My system is Macintosh G5, OS 10.3.9 (Panther). If more info needed,
    > let me know.
    >

    Screen resolution is nominally 72 ppi. If you want the image
    to be 6" wide on the screen, reduce the pixel count to a
    width of 72X6 = 432 pixels. If a friend or family member
    wants to make a print, they can ask you for the full-size
    image file.
    Marvin, Jun 15, 2006
    #13
  14. One4All

    One4All Guest

    Stewy wrote:

    > Use maximum compression.


    Sorry to be so dense, but as I said, this is new territory for me: So,
    using maximum .jpg compression will still yield a good image on a TV
    set? Even HDTV sets?
    One4All, Jun 15, 2006
    #14
  15. One4All

    Shawn Hirn Guest

    In article <>,
    "One4All" <> wrote:

    > I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    > share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    > highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    > think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    > enjoyment & partly for my own ego.
    >
    > Altho I trust my family/friends, once a DVD goes out, no telling who
    > may have access to it and may use the images for their own gain. I've
    > registered these images with the Copyright Center, but if the images
    > cannot be reproduced well, that would solve the problem up front.
    >
    > What I'd like to know is whether someone who copies these files, given
    > their format & file size, could use them for their own gain. I know
    > they could be used on a Website, but are they of sufficient size that
    > they could be used for hard-copy purposes (postcards, calendars,
    > magazines, art prints, etc.)?
    >
    > Putting it another way, what would be a sufficient file size to show on
    > a TV screen, while preventing that file's use, due to low quality, for
    > print purposes?
    >
    > My system is Macintosh G5, OS 10.3.9 (Panther). If more info needed,
    > let me know.


    The reality is the only way you can avoid having your photos stolen is
    to avoid giving them out. Even if you do as others suggested and degrade
    their resolution, an enterprising copyright violator can simply pass
    your photos through one of numerous filters to increase the resolution
    with minimal degradation.

    You can't have it both ways. You need to decide which is more important
    to you, preventing theft of your photos or sharing them.
    Shawn Hirn, Jun 15, 2006
    #15
  16. Shawn Hirn wrote:
    > In article <>,
    > "One4All" <> wrote:
    >
    >> I intend to burn some DVD's of images I've taken over the years to
    >> share with family/friends. These files are in .jpg format at high (not
    >> highest) quality. The files average 1MB each. Many of these images (I
    >> think) are marketable. I want to share my best photos, partly for their
    >> enjoyment & partly for my own ego.


    > The reality is the only way you can avoid having your photos stolen is
    > to avoid giving them out. Even if you do as others suggested and degrade
    > their resolution, an enterprising copyright violator can simply pass
    > your photos through one of numerous filters to increase the resolution
    > with minimal degradation.


    The latter is patent rubbish.
    >
    > You can't have it both ways. You need to decide which is more important
    > to you, preventing theft of your photos or sharing them.


    Others have offered practical ways you can do both.

    --
    John McWilliams
    John McWilliams, Jun 15, 2006
    #16
  17. "Marvin" <> wrote in message
    news:...

    > Screen resolution is nominally 72 ppi. If you want the image to be 6" wide
    > on the screen, reduce the pixel count to a width of 72X6 = 432 pixels. If
    > a friend or family member wants to make a print, they can ask you for the
    > full-size image file.


    Notebooks tend to have a higher ppi value as there is less space to cram in
    those pixels!

    My notebook screen is 9.75 inches horizontally with 1366 pixels wide which
    means it's 140 ppi, and the 432 pixel photo would be a microscopic 3" wide.
    Adrian Boliston, Jun 15, 2006
    #17
  18. Shawn Hirn <> wrote:
    >The reality is the only way you can avoid having your photos stolen is
    >to avoid giving them out.


    That is basically true. But, it is also true that you can't get
    into a car accident if you are never in a car, you can't die of
    food poisoning if you never eat, and you won't drown if you
    never go near water. All true, but it is absolutely not practical
    to implement such avoidance schemes as a solution to the problem
    cited.

    >Even if you do as others suggested and degrade
    >their resolution, an enterprising copyright violator can simply pass
    >your photos through one of numerous filters to increase the resolution
    >with minimal degradation.


    Where can I get one of these filters???? I don't need to steal images,
    but that certainly sounds useful in other ways! ;-)

    [Hint: they don't exist.]

    >You can't have it both ways. You need to decide which is more important
    >to you, preventing theft of your photos or sharing them.


    Or, you can share something which is less likely to attract a
    thief, but which does satisfy the particular recipients. That
    is easier said than done, perhaps, but the point is that by
    customizing the product to the customer, exposure is reduced.

    --
    Floyd L. Davidson <http://www.apaflo.com/floyd_davidson>
    Ukpeagvik (Barrow, Alaska)
    Floyd L. Davidson, Jun 15, 2006
    #18
  19. One4All

    2 Guest

    "Shawn Hirn" <> wrote

    > The reality is the only way you can avoid having your photos stolen is
    > to avoid giving them out.


    Right.

    > Even if you do as others suggested and degrade
    > their resolution, an enterprising copyright violator can simply pass
    > your photos through one of numerous filters to increase the resolution
    > with minimal degradation.


    Wrong.
    2, Jun 15, 2006
    #19
  20. One4All

    One4All Guest

    As I've said earlier, I trust my family/friends not to rip me off. My
    concern is that they loan the DVD to someone else. I think that if, in
    my narration at the beginning, I state that I do not want the DVD to
    leave their possession, they will honor that. An earlier poster said
    that if I'm lucky, my recipients will toss the DVD into a drawer & if
    unlucky, they'll trash it. Well, that's ok with me, regardless. I just
    don't want them to loan the DVD to another.

    I guess it gets down to a matter of trust, provided one informs the
    recipient of that trust.
    One4All, Jun 15, 2006
    #20
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