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Author Topic: Any limit to rip-offs?  (Read 9614 times)

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« on: October 05, 2009, 16:12 »
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What would you do if you discovered that someone copied one of your most popular images - and they even copied all of the keywords from your image (his keywords are exactly the same as mine), and the written description was almost exactly the same, too. I get so irritated with these thieves, and the laziness of this thief is especially disgusting, IMO. What would you do in this instance, would you complain to the agency? Would it do any good? Is there no limit to what these idiots can get away with?



« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2009, 16:35 »
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Quote
What would you do in this instance, would you complain to the agency?

You can bet everything that you own that I would report it!!  >:(

Don't let them get away with it!

« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2009, 16:40 »
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This current thread is related:
http://www.microstockgroup.com/general-stock-discussion/what%27s-the-limit-of-stolen-images-to-be-shut-down/msg118109/?topicseen#new




This person stole the idea, but not the image itself - if they had stolen the image itself, then I could probably (you would hope) get them kicked off the site. In this case they have stolen several of my ideas, and in at least one instance, they stole all my keywords as well.

I go through a lot of trial and error, trying out new and different ideas, some do well, but many of them sink, that's just the nature of experiments - BUT is it right for some bottom feeder to come along and duplicate my successful images? They take no risks themselves, yet they benefit from my experiments? How can an honest person survive in Microstock?

« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2009, 17:34 »
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This happens every second day. Welcome in the club. There is nothing you can do in my opinion.

« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2009, 00:56 »
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1% of people (ie about 500 microstock photographers) are psychopaths.

« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2009, 07:35 »
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It is really difficult to tell when someone has stolen your idea...this topic has been discussed many times before. I know for a fact I NEVER surf a site, see a clever idea, and intentionally go shoot exactly the same thing. I am always shocked to see a photo of someone elses that looks just like mine. The first thing I think is that it was copied from me. Then I go check the upload dates and lo and behold, theirs has been submitted before mine!

With hundreds of thousands of people in the microstock shooting world now, it is going to be increasingly difficult to come up with an original idea. The only saving grace is that my props are not going to be exactly like anyone elses in the world (what are the chances of that?) and my lighting will not be exactly the same. It may look like I copied the idea, but I have not.

That being said, I understand, Alisa, that there ARE people who intentionally copy stuff. When the description and keywords are almost identical, I guess you can easily come to that conclusion. Unfortunately, all you can do is keep shooting and move on.

« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2009, 17:43 »
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If someone copied "your idea" - there is NOTHING you can do unless you have a lot of money to spend on a very good lawyer.

Ideas and concepts can not be registered for copyright.

Therefore you would have to bring forth evidence that the other party has used your image to create another image that resembles yours.

It's up to you to produce the best possible image with "your idea" so buyers will go with the one of the highest quality.

It's basically called competition.

Keywords are also not copyright protected. That's agency-internal stuff. If you're lucky the agency will deactivate the image or have the owner change the keywords.

« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2009, 18:43 »
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There are clich concepts, but also, now and then, new and original, even rare, concepts. If one of those is succesful, you can bet it will be copied. Sometimes, you even can guess who will rip it off.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2009, 19:34 by loop »

« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2009, 19:15 »
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Why do you think IS and SS have such handy lists of 'best selling images'? Who do you think they are intended to be used by?

Noodles

« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2009, 20:22 »
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Inspiration = Okay
Replication = hang the mothers!

« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2009, 19:36 »
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My hat is off to this guy  :). He managed to find the same beach on a tiny Island in the middle of the Caribbean, get the same shot from almost the same angle, with similar accessories.

his


mine from a couple years ago


I don't really like to make accusations, but not sure what to think on this one. I guess I should be honored that my stuff is making his shotlist  ;)

« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2009, 19:52 »
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Christian,
this does hurt. However I'd take it as a compliment although it's quite lame to copy the shot.

Instead of just one woman sitting there he could have paid a local couple to lay in each others arms just to get a different feel.

This photographer didn't just start out and to take an existing shot and copying it means that you did something right!

Many people won't know about it, but for me, he lost some points ;)

« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2009, 21:33 »
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Thanks for your sympathy click click  :) it does suck when you see copying but what can you do? move forward and don't look back. Copying is a "missing the bus" approach.

It's possible that somehow our brains are wired together...lol.  The guy whose image I mentioned is the current dreamstime featured artist. I browsed his portfolio and found a girl in santa's hat snorkeling underwater. I just recently did this shot as well and to my knowledge couldn't find anything similar in micro, I thought it would be fun to try. The creepy thing is, according to dreamstime both our shots were done on the same day one Island apart in the Caribbean. How creepy is that  :o  :)
« Last Edit: October 10, 2009, 21:45 by cdwheatley »

« Reply #14 on: October 10, 2009, 21:43 »
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It's possible that somehow our brains are wired together...lol.  The guy whose image I mentioned is the current dreamstime featured artist. I browsed his portfolio and found a girl in santa's hat snorkeling underwater. I just recently did this shot as well and to my knowledge couldn't find anything similar in micro, I thought it would be fun to try. The creepy thing is, according to dreamstime both our shots were done on the same day one Island apart in the Caribbean. How creepy is that  :o  :)

You should get in touch with that guy - it seems like you have a lot in common. Maybe together you become like a super-photographer-team or something.

« Reply #15 on: October 10, 2009, 21:51 »
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It's possible that somehow our brains are wired together...lol.  The guy whose image I mentioned is the current dreamstime featured artist. I browsed his portfolio and found a girl in santa's hat snorkeling underwater. I just recently did this shot as well and to my knowledge couldn't find anything similar in micro, I thought it would be fun to try. The creepy thing is, according to dreamstime both our shots were done on the same day one Island apart in the Caribbean. How creepy is that  :o  :)

You should get in touch with that guy - it seems like you have a lot in common. Maybe together you become like a super-photographer-team or something.

Nah, I would be to concerned about him stealing my super secret recipe for rum punch  :P

« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2009, 11:28 »
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To be honest I do think the example above is probably coincidental. They appear to be a husband and wife team who shoot similarly-themed stuff throughout their portfolio and naturally she has the outfits to go with it.

As far as framing the shot is concerned you almost have to place the background island close to the centre of the composition and, taking the shadows from the trees into account, there's only really one place she could sit. It is the most obvious and natural composition of that scene under those particular conditions.

It's more common than you might think to produce near identical images. I've several examples when neither photographer had seen the others work (for example because the image uploaded later had actually been captured months before being submitted).

« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2009, 13:06 »
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To be honest I do think the example above is probably coincidental. They appear to be a husband and wife team who shoot similarly-themed stuff throughout their portfolio and naturally she has the outfits to go with it.

As far as framing the shot is concerned you almost have to place the background island close to the centre of the composition and, taking the shadows from the trees into account, there's only really one place she could sit. It is the most obvious and natural composition of that scene under those particular conditions.

It's more common than you might think to produce near identical images. I've several examples when neither photographer had seen the others work (for example because the image uploaded later had actually been captured months before being submitted).

You might be right, who knows. If the shot was taken on any other beach than I wouldn't even think twice about it. My wife and I just thought it was pretty interesting.

vonkara

« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2009, 14:14 »
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My hat is off to this guy  :). He managed to find the same beach on a tiny Island in the middle of the Caribbean, get the same shot from almost the same angle, with similar accessories.

his


mine from a couple years ago


I don't really like to make accusations, but not sure what to think on this one. I guess I should be honored that my stuff is making his shotlist  ;)
Yours is better  ;) LOL that's one the most weird thing I saw on microstock. Not even a different position !

« Reply #19 on: October 11, 2009, 15:11 »
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There are more than 20 beaches on this little Island. The odds of same shot on same beach from the same angle being coincidence are pretty slim. Even with the early morning shadows there are many angles to shoot. In my experience, these types of shots aren't selling very well in micro these days unless they are really special, or lucky in best match :). It's to easy to shoot.

« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2009, 17:52 »
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There are more than 20 beaches on this little Island. The odds of same shot on same beach from the same angle being coincidence are pretty slim. Even with the early morning shadows there are many angles to shoot. In my experience, these types of shots aren't selling very well in micro these days unless they are really special, or lucky in best match :). It's to easy to shoot.


Maho Bay does seems to be a well-known location as there are lots of images taken from a similar viewpoint on the internet;

http://www.worldofstock.com/slides/TCB1206.jpg

http://www.dcpanoramics.com/106.html

http://photos.travellerspoint.com/168527/maho.jpg

Maybe the other guy saw it on a postcard? You might get better sales if you were more specific with your keywords like 'St John' & 'Maho Bay' etc. If some resort operator or travel agent wanted shots of the local area then they might struggle to find yours.

« Reply #21 on: October 11, 2009, 18:10 »
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The resemblance is striking, I only wonder why would someone copy the idea in the exact same location.  I mean, it is not this specific beach that matters, but a crystal-clear calm beach with something in the background. 

« Reply #22 on: October 11, 2009, 18:50 »
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There are more than 20 beaches on this little Island. The odds of same shot on same beach from the same angle being coincidence are pretty slim. Even with the early morning shadows there are many angles to shoot. In my experience, these types of shots aren't selling very well in micro these days unless they are really special, or lucky in best match :). It's to easy to shoot.


Maho Bay does seems to be a well-known location as there are lots of images taken from a similar viewpoint on the internet;

http://www.worldofstock.com/slides/TCB1206.jpg

http://www.dcpanoramics.com/106.html

http://photos.travellerspoint.com/168527/maho.jpg

Maybe the other guy saw it on a postcard? You might get better sales if you were more specific with your keywords like 'St John' & 'Maho Bay' etc. If some resort operator or travel agent wanted shots of the local area then they might struggle to find yours.


I'm not talking about the beach itself. I have tons of images of Maho, I live here. It's probably the 5th best beach on St John, easy to get to, even the tour taxi's swing by. Find me an image with a girl on that beach in that same pose from that same angle.

That image has been in many travel mags and around the net for a couple of years, so it is possible he saw it there. Or maybe he took a peek at my port since I live here and he was planning a trip all the way from Hawaii. I know who he is and all the other beach guys, it's a pretty small genre. As far as keywords go, they are pretty much identical except he added a few. I choose not to name my beaches, I go back and forth with the pro's and con's. My point was shooting a single woman on the beach lying down doesn't play like it used to.

Just calling it how I see it. They do fantastic work by the way, print work is also very very good, not trying to take that away from them.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2009, 10:15 by cdwheatley »

« Reply #23 on: October 11, 2009, 19:30 »
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Both of your works are very good, no doubt.

Looks like this is a "hot spot" for travel photographers - kind of a must-have-shot.

Heck, if you have a woman along with you why won't you toss her into the frame to make it look better?

Appears to me like shots of Big Ben, Eiffel Tower, Big Apple etc. Seen one, seen all - along those lines. Doesn't mean that there can't be some outstanding ones but these are just like printing money. Go there, do it and rake in the cash. Can't blame either one of you.

« Reply #24 on: October 11, 2009, 19:51 »
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I choose not to name my beaches, I go back and forth with the pro's and con's. My point was shooting a single woman on the beach lying down doesn't play like it used to.

Just calling it how I see it. They do fantastic work by the way, print work is also very very good, not trying to take that away from them.

Well obviously, from knowing it was in the VI's, it only took me a couple of minutes to identify the location. You can ensure that many buyers won't see your images but you can't keep it secret from your serious competitors. We photographers have a great interest and memory for spectacular locations. Most landscape photographers could open any coffee-table book and name the majority of the locations without reading the text.

And yep, 'woman on beach' has probably been shot before and it'll probably happen again. Just like everything else. Any image/theme on microstock that rises up the rankings will be copied relentlessly unless it is sufficiently unique to make that difficult or impossible.

« Reply #25 on: October 11, 2009, 20:05 »
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Hmm, I wonder why I did not stop at Maho Bay?  I went to Hawksnest Bay, Leinster Bay, Watermelon Cay, Francis Bay, Cinnamon Bay, Trunk Bay, Honeymoon Beach, Caneel Bay.  Perhaps Maho did not exist in 1996?  ;D

« Reply #26 on: October 11, 2009, 20:42 »
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Hmm, I wonder why I did not stop at Maho Bay?  I went to Hawksnest Bay, Leinster Bay, Watermelon Cay, Francis Bay, Cinnamon Bay, Trunk Bay, Honeymoon Beach, Caneel Bay.  Perhaps Maho did not exist in 1996?  ;D

It looks like you covered a lot  :)

Francis is right next to Maho, Maho is actually easier to find because it's on the way to the other north shore beaches coming from Coral bay. I'm surprised you made it out to Watermelon Cay. That's a cool spot to hike to and do a snorkel around the Island. The nice thing is it's a flat hike unlike some of the other trails. I actually lugged an underwater housing out there, propbably won't do that again  :)

« Reply #27 on: October 11, 2009, 23:34 »
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Well obviously, from knowing it was in the VI's, it only took me a couple of minutes to identify the location. You can ensure that many buyers won't see your images but you can't keep it secret from your serious competitors. We photographers have a great interest and memory for spectacular locations. Most landscape photographers could open any coffee-table book and name the majority of the locations without reading the text.

And yep, 'woman on beach' has probably been shot before and it'll probably happen again. Just like everything else. Any image/theme on microstock that rises up the rankings will be copied relentlessly unless it is sufficiently unique to make that difficult or impossible.

I agree with you, If a photographer wants to find a location, he will. As you well know, advertisers lie all the time. I don't know how many times I've had beach images from Florida used for advertising in the Caribbean or Mexico and vise versa. Or, images from the Caribbean used for the Maldives etc...  When I first moved here there was an image of my wife posing with a snorkel and mask (which was shot in Florida) on a magazine cover here in the Caribbean. So I don't think exact location is all that important. The best beach for micro would be one with no identifying markings that would give away the location. One that could be used for anywhere. Maybe for macro it would be much more important. Just my opinion.
« Last Edit: October 11, 2009, 23:37 by cdwheatley »

« Reply #28 on: October 12, 2009, 00:13 »
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True enough! It's not just the advertisers lying either. If you try a search on 'Caribbean Beach' on SS it is amazing how many Thai-style long boats and images titled Seychelles or Maldives turn up. That sort of keyword spamming really irritates me __ gives us all a bad name.


 

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