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what do you think? are images of a map legal???

YES
16 (38.1%)
NO
26 (61.9%)

Total Members Voted: 36

Author Topic: Is a photo of a map legal?  (Read 14235 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

hali

« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2009, 11:14 »
0
Okay okay, let's rewind a little. What is the legal consequence of this? Is there an expert here? Who is liable? The photographer? we'll say who is not well-informed about the copyright restriction;
 the buyer who uses the images , we assume since they are in the business they know about  Intellectual Property Infringement,
or the agency, who obviously know the rules and regulations of the need for MR, PR,etc.

Can someone stand up and confirm who is liable? ???


cmcderm1

  • Chad McDermott - Elite Image Photography
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2009, 11:20 »
0
How long is the copyright valid?  I believe 75 years protection is afforded under printed copyright.  Thereafter, once the copyright expires, the material is in the public domain.

« Reply #27 on: January 23, 2009, 11:30 »
0
I took small camera (Samsung NV3). It's point and shot camera, and it can take close ups from distance of about 1cm. I took it in my hand, and put it close to my eye, and tried many times until I was satisfied. Even this image of a butterfly was taken with this camera from some 5cm distance



[Off Topic]: Nice ad for a camera :)
And we see it's accepted.... Looking for a long time for _small_ P&S that sometimes can be used for stock, how it works out? Do you reduce image sizes? Modify EXIF for those too restrictive with camera types?

RT


« Reply #28 on: January 23, 2009, 11:34 »
0
Okay okay, let's rewind a little. What is the legal consequence of this? Is there an expert here? Who is liable? The photographer? we'll say who is not well-informed about the copyright restriction;
 the buyer who uses the images , we assume since they are in the business they know about  Intellectual Property Infringement,
or the agency, who obviously know the rules and regulations of the need for MR, PR,etc.

Can someone stand up and confirm who is liable? ???

Well there is no definitive answer because the laws are different in each country, and it's dependant of who registered what and where.

But say for instance a major car manufacturer saw one of it's products being represented and they thought it was in breach of their IP (there's four types of IP) then you can be pretty sure they would have registered it worldwide.

As for who's liable again it's dependant on where and how, but in general terms the brown stuff runs downhill if you get my meaning, and speaking from experience in the UK if it does ever go to court ( most don't they settle out of court )the photographer will in most cases be there gripping the rails ! Because at the end of the day it is us the photographers that are selling our work, agencies will face the music but in terms of the big one's like Getty, Corbis, Alamy etc they pretty much have themselves covered in their t&c's , the only microsite that I'm aware of that is wise to this fact is iStock.

My best advice to anybody re IP is that if you're going to sell a photo of something and it's blatently obvious who made it don't bother, not as RF anyway.

And no I wouldn't call myself an expert and I don't think anybody would claim to be, because it's a legal battlefield.

One final point in regards your comment about the photographer not being well informed about copyright law, certainly here in the UK ignorance of the law is not a defence.



« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 11:36 by RT »

hali

« Reply #29 on: January 23, 2009, 11:40 »
0
true RT, English Law basics - "Negligence is no excuse".  We are still able to submit it as Editorial though, right?   eg. Alamy gives us RM and Licensed, and let us select Worldwide restriction for editorial usage only. That more or less keeps it proper and safe to us the maker of the image and to the owner of the Int Prop, right?

« Reply #30 on: January 23, 2009, 11:57 »
0
Okay okay, let's rewind a little. What is the legal consequence of this? Is there an expert here? Who is liable? The photographer? we'll say who is not well-informed about the copyright restriction;
 the buyer who uses the images , we assume since they are in the business they know about  Intellectual Property Infringement,
or the agency, who obviously know the rules and regulations of the need for MR, PR,etc.

Can someone stand up and confirm who is liable? ???
Again I can only speak about US copyright because I'm not licensed in any other country, though I can say that basti is mistaken about grouping all countries outside the US because the Berne Convention governs most countires, including the US, but that's getting off the point.

The photographer WOULD be liable if it was infringement because only the copyright owner has reproduction rights and the rights to may derivative works. The buyer/end user WOULD also be liable for the same reasons. BUT READ BELOW!

I would like to reiterate that I don't believe that the specific image in question would be copyright infringement. There have been several people in this thread that have equated it to photographs of cars and this is an incorrect analogy. Maps are treated under copyright law in a special way and don't really receive the same copyright protection that other works have because of the non-original nature of maps and their utilitarian function. Only the original elements of a map are copyrightable.  So for instance, on most maps the names, symbols, key, etc. are not copyrightable.

Most map makers know that in court it's hard to win an infringement suit unless it can be shown that the infringer didn't create the map independently. This is why almost every modern map has at least one intentional mistake, and most have several. On world maps they will normally misspell a few names or add fictitious names. On local maps they'll add fictitious streets. It is a common practice to "seed" maps with "trap" streets and names. It's really the only way to prove infringement of maps. So, unless that portion of the map that was photographed contained one of those trap elements, it really wasn't copyright infringement because it would be impossible to prove in court.

tan510jomast

« Reply #31 on: January 23, 2009, 12:17 »
0
EDITED
Most map makers know that in court it's hard to win an infringement suit unless it can be shown that the infringer didn't create the map independently. This is why almost every modern map has at least one intentional mistake, and most have several. On world maps they will normally misspell a few names or add fictitious names. On local maps they'll add fictitious streets. It is a common practice to "seed" maps with "trap" streets and names. It's really the only way to prove infringement of maps. So, unless that portion of the map that was photographed contained one of those trap elements, it really wasn't copyright infringement because it would be impossible to prove in court.

Ha! much like some gallery photographers embed some hidden trademarks only obvious to them in order to prove that their print, or a portion of that print was copied. Good practice, I must say. It may or may not stand up in court, but at least, it's some protection to the maker of the image, for sure.
Good one yingyang0.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 12:19 by tan510jomast »

zymmetricaldotcom

« Reply #32 on: January 23, 2009, 12:44 »
0
I confirm the practice of seeding fake streets and elements. Worked in a map company one summer in the nineties (Canada), the practice is widespread.  Mind you, in a map book of the whole city of San Fran, it might be one or two street names. 

I don't recall any specific talk of litigation based on the fake streets, because as the boss (a geography professor) said, "With maps, once you publish it, it is a 'fact' and others can copy it".    As far as I understood it,  the fake elements were planted to see who was copying your maps and that's it.     

I do recall that the agency successfully sued another company that used a graphical style that was too similar to theirs. i.e. 'You have red highways with 10pt text in xx font' etc.     So the bottom line is: redrawing in a distinctly different graphical style seems to be OK, even if it includes unique data that could only possibly have come from a particular source.

Another anecdote: My dentist in Germany got a lawyers letter demanding 1400 euros for having used a tiny map excerpt on their practice's website, which was taken from the main online map website in Germany. A very tiny sample, just a couple lines representing the streets. From my understanding he would clearly have lost had it gone to court, so he simply paid up. There are teams of lawyers in Germany trolling for this sort of thing.   

My advice: stick to those funky maps from the 1700's with sea dragons, or put your Photoshop skills to use and make a new map before trying to profit from it.

 



« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 12:52 by zymmetrical »

« Reply #33 on: January 23, 2009, 12:51 »
0
I think it is not illegal, as I have this type of image accepted in many sites.  StockXpert rejected them - maybe for this issue, I can't remember anymore - and I never submitted to IS (why? good question!).

I believe it is important however not to make it a reproduction of the map, that is, no straight shots but instead angle shots with selective focus like this.  This is not the kind of image someone who needs a map would buy instead of buying the map.

Regards,
Adelaide

tan510jomast

« Reply #34 on: January 23, 2009, 15:24 »
0
hey Keith (zymmetrical),
I tend to think that when we show an article in the photograph for stock usage, unless it is for editorial , most of it is merely symbolic or an inference to the subject. So it makes more sense to simply design your own map, in this case, rather than risk it to use some part of an Atlas. 
Then again, this is my thinking. Others may beg to differ.

RT


« Reply #35 on: January 23, 2009, 16:33 »
0
true RT, English Law basics - "Negligence is no excuse".  We are still able to submit it as Editorial though, right?   eg. Alamy gives us RM and Licensed, and let us select Worldwide restriction for editorial usage only. That more or less keeps it proper and safe to us the maker of the image and to the owner of the Int Prop, right?

Well setting an editorial license for your images will offer you a form of protection, but it doesn't guarantee anything to the owner of the IP.
Alamy make things easier for us the contributor because of their submission process, we tick boxes to say whether the image needs a property release to be used commercially and whether or not we have one, the Alamy buyer agreement sets out what the buyer needs to do in order to comply with the license, after that it's down to the buyer - incidentally you don't have to set all those restrictions, that's a tool for you to control how it's sold it's not set in stone, another useful feature I quite often use is to set restrictions in the description field, that way there's no confusion at a later date should a potential buyer claim they didn't understand the restriction, which if you read the forum occassionally you'll know it confuses most contributors.
I've been with Alamy for over five years and since I started people have been asking for a one tick editorial box, who knows it might happen one day  :D

« Reply #36 on: January 23, 2009, 16:47 »
0
I think it is not illegal, as I have this type of image accepted in many sites.  StockXpert rejected them - maybe for this issue, I can't remember anymore - and I never submitted to IS (why? good question!).

I believe it is important however not to make it a reproduction of the map, that is, no straight shots but instead angle shots with selective focus like this.  This is not the kind of image someone who needs a map would buy instead of buying the map.

Regards,
Adelaide
I think you're right Adelaide. I think the main point here is usefulness of a photographed map. I repeat again, among thousands of maps that show this region, no one could tell who did this map. Especially because this artist has to use some other map to trace this one. And maybe his source map has traced from some other map, etc... 

Tuilay

« Reply #37 on: January 23, 2009, 17:20 »
0
true RT, English Law basics - "Negligence is no excuse".  We are still able to submit it as Editorial though, right?   eg. Alamy gives us RM and Licensed, and let us select Worldwide restriction for editorial usage only. That more or less keeps it proper and safe to us the maker of the image and to the owner of the Int Prop, right?

Well setting an editorial license for your images will offer you a form of protection, but it doesn't guarantee anything to the owner of the IP.
Alamy make things easier for us the contributor because of their submission process, we tick boxes to say whether the image needs a property release to be used commercially and whether or not we have one, the Alamy buyer agreement sets out what the buyer needs to do in order to comply with the license, after that it's down to the buyer - incidentally you don't have to set all those restrictions, that's a tool for you to control how it's sold it's not set in stone, another useful feature I quite often use is to set restrictions in the description field, that way there's no confusion at a later date should a potential buyer claim they didn't understand the restriction, which if you read the forum occassionally you'll know it confuses most contributors.
I've been with Alamy for over five years and since I started people have been asking for a one tick editorial box, who knows it might happen one day  :D

If someone pressed charges on the contributor. It is the onus of the one pressing charge to prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud.
When you ticked off all the editorials limitations for Alamy, for example, you show that you knew it was not meant for commercial usage, and insisted upon Editorials Only.
That more or less covers your indemnity. The fact that the buyer did not understand this, does not make you liable. You set it up accordingly , as Alamy intended, and you intended. If the buyer so misunderstand the application, the buyer should clarify this with Alamy or the site that represents you.
But you have done all to show to the court, in the event of a suit, that you knew it should only be Editorial and you set the options as such. So the contributor is not going to be liable. BECAUSE he did NOT intentionally defraud the system.
The court does not penalize someone who FOLLOWS the rule.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 17:28 by Tuilay »

RT


« Reply #38 on: January 23, 2009, 19:21 »
0
If someone pressed charges on the contributor. It is the onus of the one pressing charge to prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud.

That's criminal law - 'Innocent until proven guilty' , IP is civil law and doesn't work that way, over here anyway.

When you ticked off all the editorials limitations for Alamy, for example, you show that you knew it was not meant for commercial usage, and insisted upon Editorials Only.
That more or less covers your indemnity. The fact that the buyer did not understand this, does not make you liable. You set it up accordingly , as Alamy intended, and you intended. If the buyer so misunderstand the application, the buyer should clarify this with Alamy or the site that represents you.
But you have done all to show to the court, in the event of a suit, that you knew it should only be Editorial and you set the options as such. So the contributor is not going to be liable. BECAUSE he did NOT intentionally defraud the system.
The court does not penalize someone who FOLLOWS the rule.

I don't understand your argument that's what I said isn't it !!

But this applies to Alamy, not any mictostock site that I'm aware of.

« Reply #39 on: January 23, 2009, 22:16 »
0
If someone pressed charges on the contributor. It is the onus of the one pressing charge to prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud.
That's criminal law - 'Innocent until proven guilty' , IP is civil law and doesn't work that way, over here anyway.
RT you're British right? All common law countries have the burden of proof on the "one pressing charge", aka the plaintiff. The difference between civil and criminal is not who has the burden of proof, but the level. In civil case the burden of proof is by a preponderance of the evidence, whereas criminal requires beyond a reasonable doubt.

necessitas probandi incumbit ei qui agit

RT


« Reply #40 on: January 24, 2009, 06:20 »
0
RT you're British right? All common law countries have the burden of proof on the "one pressing charge", aka the plaintiff. The difference between civil and criminal is not who has the burden of proof, but the level. In civil case the burden of proof is by a preponderance of the evidence, whereas criminal requires beyond a reasonable doubt.
necessitas probandi incumbit ei qui agit

yingyang0

Yes I'm British and thank you for the lecture but I'm well aware of the law in my country, just to correct you the "one pressing the charges" is known as the 'claimant' not a plaintiff, and the ones facing the charges is known as a 'defendant'.

But my point I was making was not in regards to who has to press the charge, it was regarding his comment "prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud"
which is different for criminal and civil cases, and over here any IP legal issues would be covered under civil jurisdiction.

You are correct about the level of proof.

Incidentally - "to defraud" is a criminal matter and carries a prison sentence, this would not be tried in a civil court, but I presume he just chose the wrong terminology.


« Last Edit: January 24, 2009, 08:27 by RT »

« Reply #41 on: January 24, 2009, 08:42 »
0
...just to correct you the "one pressing the charges" is known as the 'claimant' not a plaintiff, and the ones facing the charges is known as a 'defendant'.

But my point I was making was not in regards to who has to press the charge, it was regarding his comment "prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud" which is different for criminal and civil cases, and over here any IP legal issues would be covered under civil jurisdiction.
Sorry for the confusion, your answer appeared to me to imply that the burden was on the defendant. Here, across the pond,it is plaintiff or 'claimant'. But "thank you for the lecture" and there's no reason to be condescending.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2009, 10:34 by yingyang0 »


RT


« Reply #42 on: January 24, 2009, 14:52 »
0
...just to correct you the "one pressing the charges" is known as the 'claimant' not a plaintiff, and the ones facing the charges is known as a 'defendant'.

But my point I was making was not in regards to who has to press the charge, it was regarding his comment "prove that the defendant knew it was illegal and intentionally try to defraud" which is different for criminal and civil cases, and over here any IP legal issues would be covered under civil jurisdiction.
Sorry for the confusion, your answer appeared to me to imply that the burden was on the defendant. Here, across the pond,it is plaintiff or 'claimant'. But "thank you for the lecture" and there's no reason to be condescending.

No appologies neccesary, I'm just a grumpy brit, one thing I'm sure we'll both agree on is that generally speaking these things are settled long before they ever reach a court.

« Reply #43 on: January 25, 2009, 21:30 »
0
Yes legally a map is copyrighted. There might be some public domain maps available somewhere but chances are most people are going to grab the map out of their car or pick up a major publishers map from a gas station .. you can find tons of them on microstock .. but it is still illegal.

« Reply #44 on: July 24, 2016, 20:24 »
0
yes, you can sell photos of small portions of maps.

in order for copyrights to be infringed, there has to be a financial loss for the original copyright owner. for example, if you take a photo of just the area that has Athens, it would not compete with the sale of the entire map from the original copyright holder, because your photo is essentially not a map.

if you took a photo of the entire map, people could buy your photo and then they would not need to buy the original map, which takes revenues away from the original copyright holder. this is clearly infringing.

taking a photo of a small portion of the map would not take sales away from the original copyright holder, and therefor it falls under "Fair Use" as a derivative work.

« Reply #45 on: July 24, 2016, 21:39 »
0
Poll is missing the right answer. Maybe. What's the date is the first question. What's the source anotrher. It's not a yes or no. I can't answer without maybe as 3rd. What map?

« Reply #46 on: July 25, 2016, 02:14 »
+1
As a musician, I know well things about copyright in music. You can be sued for copyright even for 6 notes, but only if those six notes represent some very recognizable phrase. Also, no one can sue you even if you copy entire harmony of a song, if this harmony is often used in similar songs. Country music, for example, have basically several harmonies, and if you record something with another type of harmony, it will not sound like country music. So, you have to use one of those several harmonies (maybe sometimes with slight variations) to make a country song and no one can sue you.
But, if you use something like these 6 notes in the beginning of Beethoven's 5th symphony:
 [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhcR1ZS2hVo[/youtube]

Someone could sue you for sure...well Beethoven won't...that's for sure also  ;)
But I think this is NOT the case with this map.
Beethoven must be out of copyright.  Many pop songs copy classical music almost entirely.  As a big ELO fan, I am pleased they copied Beethoven and Chuck Berry https://youtu.be/HgcKhqlFz4Q

Shelma1

« Reply #47 on: July 25, 2016, 06:37 »
+7
Is a thread from 2009 legal?

« Reply #48 on: July 26, 2016, 15:22 »
0
"You can be sued for copyright even for 6 notes, but only if those six notes represent some very recognizable phrase.".

correct.

it isn't dependent on what you copy, but whether it creates confusion.

here is an example:

This would be potentially infringing:

Person A: "I just heard a song on the radio, it was Thriller".

Person B: "No, it sounds like Thriller, but it is a different song by a different group".

This would not be infringing:

A song that sounds like Thriller, is in the same style, uses some of the same riffs, samples some of the original song, but is clearly a different song and does not confuse people into thinking it is the original song, or the original artist.

As long as the new work (in this case a song) does not confuse people into thinking it is the original song, it is usually not infringing. it is written in the US copyright law. it can remind people of the original song, but not confuse people into thinking it is the original song.



« Reply #49 on: July 28, 2016, 14:16 »
0
What does a song have to do with a map? Would I be confused by a copy of a map. U make no sense unnonimus.

The right answer for maps is public domain or out of copyright can be used. All others can't.

Beethoven is out of copyright, Chuck Berry is not. ELO either had permission and paid, they used the Berry lyrics. Permission is required from and royalty payment to the company that owns the rights to the song and lyrics.

http://chuckberry.com/licensing/

Map license to reproduce a portion could be legally obtained. Then hope that SS accepts that license.


 

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