Thursday, May 30, 2013

How your images can become an orphan work

very quickly
What is an orphan work?
a few years ago I posted a blog entry called Glorious Colours in Nature
and included this image of  some  peacock feathers I had scanned.  The image to the left is the print out of the original blog entry when my background was black. 
I did a reverse image search and it's all over the flipping place,being used on book covers, blog entries, religious sites, for sale, on pinterest. Some sites using it still have my file name attached to the image and it's listed on polyvore as mine with a link back, but over time others added their own file name or the file name got changed when it was shared.

Each time someone shares an image it's like Chinese Whispers, by the time it's spread all over the net nobody knows who it belongs to.

However in the end it's NOT impossible to trace the image back to me. Astonishing that one site Free4Twitter is offering it for FREE without any consideration to the fact that it was subject to copyright on google search.
AND
Here it is used on a book cover and nope, you guessed,I don't get any royalties or credit. 

 BIG story in the UK
Changes to UK copyright law that will put fb, twitter and instragram images at risk.
"many images found online are being "orphaned" shortly after they appear due to the fast and ubiquitous nature of images that are uploaded, retweeted, shared and pollinated around the world, making it impossible to track down the original owner."

Not impossible,reverse image search can find the original owner ;)

LESSONS TO BE LEARNED
I made the mistake of thinking that because I had so few visitors to my blog, very few comments or inquiries about my work that people were not interested and just passed by.
OBVIOUSLY NOT

I certainly didn't imagine my scanned peacock feathers would be used. I assumed anybody can scan peacock feathers and I just plonked the photo right here on my blog.

My big lesson is to never underestimate or undervalue my work or photography again. 

  1. Always watermark/embed a signature no matter how mundane you think your image is.
  2. Reduce your image file to a thumbnail size
  3. Add your blog address into the file name
LINKS

What happens to images on Pinterest
Tips for protecting your images on Pinterest

Creators Against Pinterest

Your Photos?
 Not according to photo sharing apps 

Tips and Techniques to Protect Images 
courtesy of Greg Cope

Tools for cropping & resizing images 
FreeTech4Teachers

Artist Marketing Resources has a wealth of information for artists as well as excellent links.  






1 comment:

Cyranetta said...

Sheesh! All of these "discoveries" must make you feel like Alice down the rabbit hole, where all the rules and perspectives are twisted...