All posts tagged: Copyright

J. Paul Getty Museum opens up its collections of images

The J. Paul Getty Museum, which collects works of art including paintings, drawings, manuscripts, sculptures and photographs, is making its collections of digital images available for all uses without charge, marking a radical shift in its long-standing policy of charging for commercial use of its work. As a result, more than 4600 high-resolution images representing 4,689 objects will be download-able for academic and commercial use without restrictions. The J. Paul Getty Trust, which runs the museum, plans to add other images, until eventually all applicable Getty-owned or public domain images are available, without restrictions, online,” says the museum. “The Getty Trust was established 30 years ago on the instructions of our founder to diffuse and disseminate artistic and general knowledge,” Getty’s president and CEO Jim Cuno tells BJP. “That’s the only instructions he gave before his death. We feel one way that we could meet [his wish] was by making available broadly and for no charge images of objects in our collections in the spirit of disseminating them as artistic knowledge. It just seemed the right …

2013-12-11T11:27:35+00:00

French court bans Yan Morvan’s latest photobook

Yan Morvan has been documenting gangs in France’s suburbs for 40 years, he’s followed the Hell’s Angels, Skinheads and even serial killer Guy Georges, who took him hostage in 1995 and tortured him for three weeks. This experience forced Morvan to call it quits but, in 2000, he released the book Gangs Story, providing a retrospective of his work. In the book, Morvan includes the portrait of “Petit Mathieu”, a 17-year-old far-right activist who posed with a flare gun and a hammer – two weapons that were not outlawed in France at the time and which he could use in street fights. Sued by his subject, Morvan was forced to remove the image from the book. In 2013, after Morvan partnered with Kizo, a former gang member, on the production of a new documentary about France’s suburbs, the book publisher La Manufacture de Livres re-edited Gangs Story, adding a new series of images shot between 2009 and 2012. Also included in the final edit was Mathieu’s portrait. Earlier this month, Mathieu, whose full name has been withheld, brought …

2013-12-11T11:40:17+00:00

Controversial copyright framework receives Royal Assent

Despite wide opposition from the photographic industry, the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill received Royal Assent on 26 April, enabling the government to introduce, through regulations, controversial copyright reforms. The bill, which became an act of law last week, was sponsored by Vince Cable and Lord Marland of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The bill was originally written to eradicate unnecessary bureaucracy but presented a series of provisions, introduced through the back door by the Intellectual Property Office, to allow the use of orphan works, such as images that lack metadata and whose copyright owners cannot be found. While the bill has received Royal Assent, the proposed copyright changes have not yet been approved by the government, as the Intellectual Property Office is still consulting the industry on the changes. Yet, once finalised, the government will be able to introduce the controversial regulations, which will face minimal legislative oversight – a committee of MPs can approve or reject the regulations but cannot amend them. If introduced and approved, these regulations would have seismic …

2013-12-11T11:59:50+00:00

Study exposes social media sites that delete photographs’ metadata

The International Press Telecommunications Council has released a new study into the use of images by social media websites, finding that some of the most predominant ones, such as Facebook, Twitter and even Flickr, remove photographers’ metadata from images they host. The IPTC represents some of the world’s major news agencies, news publishers and news industry vendors. “A social networking site is only as good as the information its members choose to share,” says Michael Steidl, IPTC’s managing director, in a statement. “If users provide rights data and descriptions within their images, these data shouldn’t be removed without their knowledge.” The IPTC has tested 15 social media websites, looking at how image sharing, through upload and download, affects the integrity of embedded metadata as defined by the IPTC standards and the Exif standards. The results show that Facebook and Flickr are some of the worst offenders, with most of the metadata removed from the original files uploaded. Twitter has also been found to remove Exif and IPTC metadata from its files. Google+, however, passed all of IPTC’s …

2013-12-11T12:05:51+00:00

Swiss photographer in legal battle to publish photobook

In Jesus’ Name, produced in 2012, is Christian Lutz’s third book in a series documenting power around the world. In 2007, the Agence Vu photographer published Protokoll on political power, and Tropical Gift in 2010 on economic power. In Jesus’ Name documents religious power and is the result of an investigation within the International Christian Fellowship, “one of the most important free churches in Switzerland”, says the photographer. However, legal proceedings filed by a group of 21 people Lutz had photographed have put a stop to the book’s production. The group argues that it never granted Lutz the right to use their image, a fact the photographer denies. “A judge [at Zurich civil court] confirmed the decision to block the release of the book on 24 January,” Lutz tells BJP. “We have now asked for the writ, which we should get in the next few weeks. Once we get it, we’ll decide whether or not we appeal, but I can already say that the publisher [Lars Müller Publishers] and I are getting ready for a potential lawsuit.” Lutz first met Leo Bigger, …

2013-12-11T12:11:27+00:00

Photographers find support in House of Lords in copyright fight

In a heartfelt speech, crossbench party member Lord Greenway vocalised the worst fears of photographers and picture agencies – that changes to copyright law would jeopardise their livelihoods and rights. Speaking earlier this week in response to discussions about the licensing and usage of Orphan Works for commercial and non-commercial purposes, Lord Greenway explained he had once worked as a photographer and as a result has an archive of photographs, both his own and those he has acquired. “In effect, I have what could be termed a small photo library,” he said. “I am concerned about this measure because copyright is, and always has been, a minefield. To my mind, what we are doing here risks making it even more of a minefield. What will be the position for the large number of photo libraries, which, after all, make their living from selling reproduction rights for photographs? There is a risk that if the Bill goes through as it stands, some of them could go out of business.” Lord Clement-Jones, Liberal Democrat Peer and spokesman …

2013-12-11T12:11:56+00:00

Photography industry shows mass opposition to government copyright changes

The controversial provisions are part of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill, sponsored by Vince Cable and Lord Marland of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The bill was originally written to eradicate unnecessary bureaucracy but presents a series of provisions, introduced through the back door by the Intellectual Property Office, to allow the use of Orphan Works such as images that lack metadata and whose copyright owners cannot be found. However, in an unprecedented move, 73 organisations and individuals have co-signed a briefing letter sent to members of the House of Lords to express their deep opposition to the changes to the UK’s copyright laws. Among the signatories are Thomson Reuters, British Pathé, Press Association, Getty Images, Associated Press, Corbis, Magnum Photos, the Mary Evans Picture Library, the Association of Photographers, the British Association of Picture Libraries and Agencies, The Art Archive, Nature Picture Library, ITN, Stop43, Image Source, the Royal Photographic Society and many others. “The reason why all these organisations came together is because these proposals to change the UK’s copyright …

2013-12-11T12:12:49+00:00

Agence France-Presse infringed on photographer’s copyright in landmark Twitter case

The case, launched in early 2011 by Agence France-Presse against freelance photographer Daniel Morel, is moving forward, as district judge Alison J Nathan has found in summary judgment that the news agency, as well as The Washington Post, did not have the right to distribute Morel’s images of the devastating 2010 Haiti earthquake. When the disaster hit, Morel was in Port-au-Prince. According to a counter-claim the photographer filed against AFP, Morel spent most of that day photographing. With the help of a friend, he created a Twitter account in the username PhotoMorel, where he posted, through the Twitpic service, 13 images he had taken. Morel accuses AFP of distributing and selling his images without prior permission, and has countersued, alleging that AFP had violated the Copyright Act of 1976, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and the Lanham Act. Morel also brought those claims against Getty Images, which has a worldwide distribution deal with AFP, and a range of other media organisations, including The Washington Post, all of which also used Morel’s images without authorisation. In this week’s landmark …

2013-12-11T12:13:15+00:00

News agencies go on the offensive, call for judicial review of copyright changes

The world’s largest news agencies have delivered a Letter Before Claim to the UK’s business secretary Vince Cable, in what is described as the first step in the process of initiating a Judicial Review – a formal legal challenge to planned governmental legislation. Associated Press, Getty Images, Reuters, British Pathé, Press Association, and the Federation of Commercial and Audiovisual Libraries are objecting to Clauses 66, 67 and 68 of the Enterprise and Regularoty Reform Bill, which will allow the government to make changes to copyright exceptions, reduce the length of term of copyright, and allow the licensing of Orphan Works. In its Letter Before Claim, the consortium of news agencies call into question the government’s rational to propose these changes. “The consortium believes that the economic growth arguments originally put forward to justify the Government’s proposals are without basis and has challenged the Government’s plans to introduce its proposed changes through so-­‐called `Henry VIII clauses` -­ secondary legislation which is not subject to the full scrutiny of Parliament, which includes visibility to the public.” Despite …

2013-12-11T12:13:44+00:00

Proposed UK copyright changes spark worldwide protests

The American Society of Media Photographers, Professional Photographers of America, National Press Photographers Association, Picture Archive Council of America, American Photographic Artists and Graphic Artists Guild have submitted a joint letter to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills in the UK to express their deep concerns over the provisions presented in Clause 68 of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill. The bill, which was first introduced in the House of Commons in May, has been sponsored by Vince Cable and Lord Marland of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. It was written to “get rid of unnecessary bureaucracy” but presents a series of provisions to allow the use of Orphan Works such as images that lack metadata and whose copyright owners cannot be found. The bill is expected to reach the committee stage in the House of Lords on 03 December, but has already attracted criticism for rights owners, photo and stock agencies, as well as photographers who fear that the provisions will make it legal to use images without authorisation from …

2013-12-11T12:31:10+00:00

BJP Staff