Copyright Infringement could be occurring at epidemic levels
Image by the Author Christopher Boswell Copyright 2020 All Rights Reserved
“The right to be attributed as an author of a work is not merely a copyright, it is every author’s basic human right” ― Kalyan C. Kankanala
The Lack of Morality is Frightening
As I begin to type this article a thought pops into my noggin.
“How will this be received” It says.
I pause, and the truth is I don’t know. Maybe everyone will say thank you, but I doubt it.
Disclaimer: So, let me just say with that in mind, if you get your images in the proper manner, I am not talking to you. If I sound pissed off, it’s because I am.
Back to business, as I read the articles of writers here on Medium tonight, I find 9 out of 10, that I chose are not following the law regarding copyright with respect to image use.
Some of the authors even had PHD behind their names. Others are promoting themselves a best practice advisors in the world of literary art.
Not only that, News Break has provided good solid guidance on this, yet it is being ignored by a large percentage of authors.
Wait, before we go there, you may be thinking, what is Copyright?
noun: copyright; plural noun: copyrights
- the exclusive legal right, given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material, and to authorize others to do the same.
Copyright infringement (also referred to as piracy) is the use of works protected by copyright law without permission for a usage where such permission is required, thereby infringing certain exclusive rights granted to the copyright holder, such as the right to reproduce, distribute, display or perform the protected work, or to make derivative works. The copyright holder is typically the work’s creator, or a publisher or other business to whom copyright has been assigned. Copyright holders routinely invoke legal and technological measures to prevent and penalize copyright infringement.
"Certainly the interest in asserting copyright is a justified one." — Johannes Rau
Ahoy Matey Prepare to Walk the Plank
Just today, I was reading an article that had 10 pictures showing watermarks from stock photo sites that are designed to stop this behavior.
Sites like Bigstock and Alamy, even iStock. Someone has spent a lot of money and time to make those images hoping to make some income. Maybe even an entire living.
Someone like me!
The folks I am calling out are not giving the artist a credit line either.
Newsflash, most of the images on Google are not there for you to use for your own products.
They are simply thumbnails indexed from somewhere that picture was posted. When YOU use an image without authorization, you are telling the world you are not only an amateur, but that you don’t care about the law or ownership of creative products.
Guess what, I won’t even read your article!
I might even notify the copyright holder and point him to your indiscretion.
Here is what Medium says on this subject in case you missed it:
Copyright and trademark infringement
Respect the copyrights and trademarks of others. Unless you’re authorized to use someone else’s copyrighted work or trademark (either expressly or by legal exceptions and limitations like fair use), don’t do it.
According to the US Copyright office, the legal penalties for copyright infringement are:
- Infringer pays the actual dollar amount of damages and profits.
- The law provides a range from $200 to $150,000 for each work infringed.
- Infringer pays for all attorneys fees and court costs.
- The Court can issue an injunction to stop the infringing acts.
- The Court can impound the illegal works.
- The infringer can go to jail.
Guess how much it might cost from the leading stock photo companies? — — — — $2.99
Hmm, $3 bucks or jail?
I don’t know, tough choice, I guess for the overwhelming majority.
Hopefully, I don’t find you with one of mine.
Now this is what one of those photos on Google looks like as many of you know. However, I can use it in this form because I am the creator!
As the creator, an immediate copyright is made when I press the camera shutter.
You however are not, needing to buy a subscription then pay for the photo based on the use you desire. Or, choose not to and maybe the image above can represent your new bedroom view.
Imagine if you went on vacation, your house was just sitting there. It’s on Google, so I dropped in and started using it.
Or, I took 10 of your articles and made them into an eBook to sell on Amazon, never contacting or mentioning you? OK Right?
The Welcome Mat Was Out
So I can just use your house right? It’s on Google! The mat said WELCOME!
I guess you forgot to leave the key.
"I spend all my time right now trying to combat music retail and copyright." — Garth Brooks
Google had your name up there and showed me where to find your articles, you were giving them to us right?
Have I Made My Point?
Maybe, but only 20 people will read this so who cares.
Thanks, that’s enough out of me, for now.
I hope you found some value in this article, if you did please follow the links below for more of my recent work, maybe another will resonate. Until next time, Cheers, Christopher
© Christopher Boswell 2020. All Rights Reserved. Take it seriously.
When Christopher isn’t writing from wherever, he can be found traveling or capturing photographs somewhere in the United States. He may be generating Graphic Design, building a website, processing images or video, flying his Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, wrangling dogs, or backpacking and kayaking. He lives in Tacoma, WA. We invite you to learn more about Christopher at Real Window Creative