Calling All Photographers & Artists-Help Copyright Alliance Protect YOUR Copyright

Posted Apr. 19th, 2014 by Daniel J. Cox

Calling All Photographers & Artists-Help Copyright Alliance Protect YOUR Copyright. It’s time to put down your cameras, art brushes, sculpting clay and design tools for 15 minutes of business that will help you earn a better living at what you love to do. Photography & Art.

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The Copyright Alliance has your back. Take a few moments and support them supporting you.

I subscribe to a newsletter by a terrific organization known as the Copyright Alliance. These folks help us protect the rights to our photographs and art work. They recently sent me an email alerting me to an ongoing discussion by a group known as NetMundial. NetMundial is in the process of presenting a Draft Outcome Document on Internet Governance in a meeting to be held Monday, April 21. (Yes, I know, this first paragraph has nearly put me to sleep just writing it but please keep reading).

The Copyright Alliance needs all photographers and artists to voice their feelings about this new document (there is a Public Comment period that CLOSES on April 21) being drafted that will effect anyone sharing or posting their photographs on the internet. The information below is copied directly from the Copyright Alliance email. Please read the text below then follow this link, Draft Document on Internet Governance,  or the link provided in the text. At the bottom of this Post I have provided sample language that I used in the comment sections to voice my concerns. You can use my text verbatim or put it your own words. Here is the email from the Copyright Alliance.

Dear Copyright Advocates,

Discussions are ongoing about the future of the Internet, and it’s important that artists’ voices are heard.

NetMundial, a global multistakeholder process, is meeting Monday, April 21 to discuss a Draft Outcome Document on Internet Governance. That document, available at  http://document.netmundial.br/  shows no trace of recognition of the importance of intellectual property protection for a healthy Internet ecosystem.  Paragraph 13, for example, says:

 “The ability to innovate and create has been at the heart of the remarkable growth of the Internet and it has brought great value to the global society. For the preservation of its dynamism, Internet governance must continue to allow permissionless innovation through an enabling Internet environment.”

Another aspect of the draft that deserves comment is paragraph 2 through 8, dealing with Human Rights, which lists several rights spelled out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but omits any reference to Article 27(2), guaranteeing authors and creators the right to benefit from their moral and material rights of authorship.

The draft is currently open to public comment.

We encourage you to post a brief comment on the document, which stresses the need to recognize intellectual property protection and the rule of law generally as key ingredients of sound Internet governance. Here is a suggested comment that you can post: We think a strong vibrant internet is core to the future of independent artists but that all creative and innovative people need to respect one another’s creative output and the concept of permissionless innovation rejects this notion of respect or you can write something in your own words.

Public comments must be received by Monday, April 21, 8 am EST, to help shape the final document. We think it’s vital that artists and creators speak up during this process.

To post a comment, go to http://document.netmundial.br/, click on “Internet Governance Principles”, scroll down to the paragraph on which you wish to comment, and click on the comment balloon on the right. You will need to provide your name (which could include affiliation) and e-mail address.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Thank you!

Best, Cecile Remington

Below is the language I added to each issue outlined by the Copyright Alliance above.

Paragraph 13 Response

There needs to be language to recognize intellectual property protection and the rule of law generally as key ingredients of sound Internet governance. I believe a strong vibrant internet is core to the future of independent artists but all creative and innovative people, such as photographers, need to respect one another’s creative output and the concept of permissionless innovation rejects this notion of respect.

Paragraph 2-8 Human Rights

Nowhere in this section is there any reference to Article 27(2), guaranteeing authors and creators the right to benefit from their moral and material rights of authorship. Intellectual property rights such as art and photography need to be acknowledged as commercially valuable to the artists and should be protected online as they are offline.

It was extremely easy to find the document, track down the specific paragraph that the Copyright Alliance has alerted us to and then add your voice.  PLEASE take a few minutes and let them know you want your rights as an artist considered in this new document that will provide governance for the internet in the foreseeable future.

Just because you are artistic doesn’t mean you can’t be successful. Taking the time to do this small amount of “Business” will help you and all artists coming behind us, make a reasonable and comfortable living from their passion for creative expressions. FILL THIS FORM OUT BEFORE APRIL 21. THAT’S THIS COMING MONDAY!

 

 

Add Your Voice!
There are 24 comments on this post…
  1. Renee LiggettOn May. 4th, 2014

    I wish i’d been aware of this before the end date. I would have added my voice to the cause. Would like to know results of this.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn May. 4th, 2014

      Renee,

      If you follow the link you should be taken to a page that gives you information regarding all info collected. Let me know if you don’t find it and I’ll track down a link to get this information to you and others.

  2. Benjamin HubertOn Apr. 27th, 2014

    It would have been nice to get this information before the expiration date stated in this article. But aside all of that I do agree that we need to have copyright protection there are people who have little moral or ethical principles and prefer to sit on there butt and say “Oh yes didn’t I take a great image” when they where not even there. They need to be exposed to the lite of day for what they are.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 28th, 2014

      Benjamin, I would have loved to get this info out sooner myself but I got the email alerting me just a day before the deadline. Thanks for adding your voice.

  3. Bob HaineOn Apr. 26th, 2014

    Thanks for the information–very interesting. I’m a photographer learning my craft and trying to figure out the business side of it as well.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 28th, 2014

      Thanks for adding your thoughts. Keep the Natural Exposures page book irked since I often write about the ins and out of the business side of photography.

  4. Pereko MosiaOn Apr. 21st, 2014

    Hi there, how much I must pay for copyright registration

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 22nd, 2014

      Pereko, In the United States it’s about $40.00US for 1 or unlimited number of images. Are you in the states?

    • Ted W BishopOn Apr. 26th, 2014

      Copyright Protection Lawyers

      My original work posted on social media, has been taken and reused without permission to often. Some years ago, I sought a legal assistance after a realtor used my original work without permission in there ads. Lawyers in the area thought it was difficult to litigate. I use bridge to put copyright notices in much of my work, and burn them on DVD.

      Is there reasonable legal solutions?

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 28th, 2014

      Ted, I can not believe an attorney suggested that it would be difficult to litigate a local realtor who infringed the rights of your photos. The US Copyright Laws are very straight forward. There are two types of copyright.

      First and foremost is the copyright you have the minute you take that image. If you can prove it’s your photo, which typically isn’t difficult if you have the original file, you can order the person using your work to “cease and desist”. Then you have the ability to charge them for the use of that image and generally, when somebody has used one of my photographs without permission, the fee is 3X what I would have normally charged. How do you figure out what you should normally charge? I use a program called FotoQuote. This will explain how to charge for the use of your pictures. It’s not cheap software but if you do get into selling your work it’s indispensable. Another way to research what should be charged for the use of an image is to visit either Getty Images or Corbis. Signup for an account, select a photo that may be similar to the one somebody wants to license and then go through the pricing process they have online. This will give you an idea of what you should charge.

      The second, more powerful form of copyright protection requires that you “Register” your images with the US Copyright Office. This is relatively inexpensive since you can register an unlimited number of images on one registration form. Currently the cost for electronically registering your photos is $35.00US. I’ve heard this fee may be going up but even if it were a $100.00US it would still be a bargain.

      I really appreciate you taking the time to add your voice on this issue. Look into some of the links I’ve included here and feel free to stop by with any further questions.

  5. Bernard Clyde BeckOn Apr. 21st, 2014

    If there is a move afoot to deny the creators of art and photographic expressions for the intent of defrauding those who create it, then this should be shot down in flames.

    Why should my art or photography be “public domain”? If it is to be public domain, then all the patents and copyrights on everything should be also. Then we shall see the demise of all business enterprises, all means of earning a living, and complete anarchy.

    Is not the creator of art entitled to the fruits of their labors?

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 21st, 2014

      Bernard, Well said and I agree 1000%. Individual artists, photographers, and creatives of all kinds are at a huge disadvantage to the large corporations who have massive amounts of cash to protect their intellectual property rights, patents, etc. A current example is Apple who is fighting tooth and nail, speeding hundreds of millions of dollars to fight Samsung for stealing ideas that Apple came up with. I’m rooting for Apple just like I’m rooting for photographers who need to earn a living by protecting the images they create. Our big problem is we don’t have the millions of dollars that a company like Apple has. That’s one of the reasons I’m a member of the American Society of Media Professionals. I often wish they were more effective but they are about all we have as individual photographers right now. If I had a nickel for every time one of my images is used without authorization I would be making a very good living from just those sales. Thanks for stopping in and adding your voice. By the way, another effective option is contacting your senators and representatives, something I’m doing, to explain the side of the little guy like ourselves. Remember the squeaky wheel is the one that gets the grease. We all need to voice our frustrations more to our politicians.

  6. Jeff SullivanOn Apr. 21st, 2014

    I followed the link, and comments are closed. Was the deadline actually the 20th? Is there somewhere else we can provide the feedback?

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 21st, 2014

      Jeff, the initial public comment period has switched to a more specific commenting option that is at this address: http://document.netmundial.br/. Keep in mind that you have to take a few minutes and really study this document and pick the things that related to your concerns. That’s never easy since we’ll all so busy but if we want our voice to be heard, if this is important to us, we need to ad our voice. I plan to in the next day or so.

  7. Judy SolomonOn Apr. 20th, 2014

    The Internet is the way of the future for artists of all types. To not have the ability to protect our photos is ridiculous when it’s available in all other venues. The internet must follow suit with the laws that are already in place. I can not see any other way.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 21st, 2014

      Could not agree more Judy. Thanks for adding your voice.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 20th, 2014

      Marc, Actually I think you mean “Register the photo” which is the best way to go. However, that still does not address the need for the internet community to understand, just because it’s on the internet does not mean it is free. We need to encourage people to respect other people’s intellectual property/photography.

  8. Carol RummensOn Apr. 19th, 2014

    There needs to be language to recognize intellectual property protection and the rule of law generally as key ingredients of sound Internet governance. I believe a strong and vibrant internet is core to the future of independent artists but all creative and innovative people, such as photographers, need to respect one another’s creative output and the concept of permissionless innovation rejects this notion of respect.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 20th, 2014

      Very well said Carol. Thank you for your input.

  9. Michael WilliamsOn Apr. 19th, 2014

    Michael Williams
    Michael Williams Photography

    The value of intellectual property can’t be left to chance, yet that is what is happening here. There would be very little art in the world if the people who create that art had no legal protection as could happen here. The internet is a vital part of the arts community nowadays. It cannot be granted some kind of under-the-table allowance to circumvent laws that exist in other parts of society. Thanks go to all of those individuals who monitor such things. They do us all a favor.

  10. Portrait of Christine Crosby

    Christine CrosbyOn Apr. 19th, 2014

    Thanks for alerting us to this Dan!! It’s a REALLY important issue and I appreciate your vigilance in keeping us informed of what’s happening with changing laws and policy! I really believe this is a critical issue facing not “just” us as photographers, but writers, musicians, traditional artists, and the myriad of other creative persons out there sharing their gifts and personal productions! I’m “on the job” to help spread the word, asap!!

  11. Portrait of Ron Cunniff

    Ron CunniffOn Apr. 19th, 2014

    Thanks for posting this Dan. I’ll be adding my voice. Copyright seems to be the theme this month. Related to this, the Copyright Office is raising some of its rates. Registration of collections goes from $35 to $55 on May 1st.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 19th, 2014

      Thanks for your interest and support Ron. Regarding the fees being raid for Copyright Registration, I have to say I feel it’s still as superb deal. If they need more money to do an even better job than they do, I’m all for it.

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