Being a photographer and musician I’m often faced with this scenario; “What if someone uses my photo’s or tracks without permission and gains from it?”
I have been faced with that situation before but this rant is about MyPE being subject to what is more commonly known as copyright infringement. And just for the record, this happened not once but TWICE with the SAME company (Before any questions get raised, yes I do know this for a fact).
What gets me about the whole scenario is how a big publishing house effectively picks on a “little” guy and thinks “no harm, no foul”, despite them having the resources and the means to get their own photographs. Making use of someone else’s photograph and cropping out the copyrighted area is STUPID, and I’m sorry, but it also comes across as lazy.
So…for all the photographers out there that place their images online for whatever reason, here is a tip on how to better protect those photos and your OWN leg work.
Watermarking an image is your best bet, but watermarking in areas like corners, top or the sides of an image presents an opportunity for the image to be cropped, centering that watermark or placing it in a detailed area where cropping would be useless and making it as difficult to edit is the way to go.
The steps below are based on Photoshop CS5, but it should be relatively the same for most image editing programs (Paint Excluded) As an example I used one of MyPE’s photos found on this page.
Watermarks are mostly text based, so keeping that in mind here’s what you do:
- Place your watermark in the centre of the image, or any area that has some detail.
- Knock the opacity down quite a lot, to anywhere below 50%
- Lastly, choose the correct colour. If the image is predominantly dark, use a lighter colour and likewise if the image is light in colour
The most Important Tip:
As far as possible, stay away from free image hosting services and free blog services, try and host your work under your own name and domain, where you have much more control.
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