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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
Thread started 15 Aug 2014 (Friday) 18:51
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Copyright infringement?

 
TSmith8779
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Aug 16, 2014 11:22 |  #16

I too see it only as a principal thing too. I guess I was a little shocked to see somebody else's copyright stamped on my work. There was no contract with the real estate company for any exchange of anything, and certainly nothing where I gave them the right to put their copyright on my work. It's a small thing, and I'm not going to push it any further. If, however, it was one of my pictures I sell in galleries, that would be another story.


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Hogloff
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Aug 16, 2014 11:28 |  #17
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TSmith8779 wrote in post #17099876 (external link)
I too see it only as a principal thing too. I guess I was a little shocked to see somebody else's copyright stamped on my work. There was no contract with the real estate company for any exchange of anything, and certainly nothing where I gave them the right to put their copyright on my work. It's a small thing, and I'm not going to push it any further. If, however, it was one of my pictures I sell in galleries, that would be another story.

Exact tack to take IMHO. No use making a mountain out of a molehill.




  
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digirebelva
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Aug 16, 2014 13:28 |  #18

Hogloff wrote in post #17099882 (external link)
Exact tack to take IMHO. No use making a mountain out of a molehill.

But something could still be said about the practice without causing a ruckus, more of an informational conversation.


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jwhite65
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Aug 16, 2014 16:45 |  #19

Maybe something like, "Hey guys, I know you want to mark the photos so no one else can use them, but copyright actually belongs to me. How about you mark them with 'Listed by ABC Realty' instead of using the word copyright?"


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sspellman
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Aug 16, 2014 19:17 |  #20

I shoot real estate professionally. It is common for the listing realtor to put their logo on all photos from their houses to clearly identify the listing agent on the multitude of real estate listing websites. The agent is not deliberately trying to steal your photos, just following their standard workflow. The agent probably received the photos from your friend without any talk of credit or conditions of use. No photographers in the industry put their watermark on photos by real estate companies for MLS, websites, RE guides and magazines, etc. They do get a written credit for architectural work featured in design magazines.

The best thing you can do is to make a digital flyer that shows your real estate photo work and send it to this agent and others that work in the same office in hopes of getting hired for other gigs. Making a big stink about this minor mater is the easiest way to make sure you don't work in this industry.

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digirebelva
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Aug 16, 2014 20:13 |  #21

sspellman wrote in post #17100530 (external link)
I shoot real estate professionally. It is common for the listing realtor to put their logo on all photos from their houses to clearly identify the listing agent on the multitude of real estate listing websites. The agent is not deliberately trying to steal your photos, just following their standard workflow. The agent probably received the photos from your friend without any talk of credit or conditions of use. No photographers in the industry put their watermark on photos by real estate companies for MLS, websites, RE guides and magazines, etc. They do get a written credit for architectural work featured in design magazine.

-Scott

The listing realtors in my area don't put a watermark on the photos uploaded to the MLS, they arent allowed. The MLS puts a small watermark on the corner though. Its all dependent on the local MLS rules.


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Yaryman
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Aug 17, 2014 00:08 |  #22

Yaryman wrote in post #17099286 (external link)
Am I missing something here?

Larry Johnson wrote in post #17099650 (external link)
Well, yeah. You are missing one very important fact and also seem to have a bone to pick with realtors. I'm not a realtor either.

The OP wasn't hired by the realtor. He made the pictures for a friend. It was implied as a favor. It was alsoimplied that he wasn't expecting to get paid.

Realtors don't make 6% commission. It's customary for the buyer's and seller's realty company to SPLIT 6%. I'll admit, it sounds like highway robbery, but the price paid to the realty company (not the individual realtors) has absolutely nothing to do with the copyright issue. Sure they can afford it, so what. There was no contract.

Larry, the seller IS PAYING A 6% COMMISSION.
I'm not arguing the commission amount, I'm saying doing the Realtor a favor when they are charging a 6% commission is absurd.
On the list of people who get free favors, Realtors rank well below lawyers and pond scum.

If you are charging a 6% commission on a sale of 200K to a million dollars and can't provide decent photos, then you don't deserve to represent the client.
You certainly don't deserve charity from the clients friend.


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Roamingbull
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Aug 17, 2014 19:50 |  #23

Yes, I agree.... Best choice for the future, and maybe there will be one if the house sells with your quality images,,,,,,,show me the money.


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Luckless
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Aug 17, 2014 20:32 |  #24

Yaryman wrote in post #17100784 (external link)
Larry, the seller IS PAYING A 6% COMMISSION.
I'm not arguing the commission amount, I'm saying doing the Realtor a favor when they are charging a 6% commission is absurd.
On the list of people who get free favors, Realtors rank well below lawyers and pond scum.

If you are charging a 6% commission on a sale of 200K to a million dollars and can't provide decent photos, then you don't deserve to represent the client.
You certainly don't deserve charity from the clients friend.

Of course the clients have absolutely zero vested interest in the property moving, and whether it is a $50k property or a $500k property the client clearly doesn't gain the slightest advantage if the property sells today or if things drag on for four or five years, and they don't even need to think about doing anything themselves to help move the property because obviously the realtor is just going to handle all of that for them.

I've been involved in the sales of lots of houses and know several realtors. They're all just totally rolling in the dough, especially in the last ten years with this awesome economy we've been having, so they all go over to clean up the houses for their clients, and pour thousands of dollars of their own money into renovations and upkeep to make the property look better and be easier to sell... No, wait, that is some made up dream land that doesn't actually exist.


Friends are trying to sell a property. Photographer offered to do them a favour and provide better them with better photos to use so they can sell the property faster and use that money to do what they want. If you are hiring someone to build you a new deck then should the contractor and materials supplier give me a kickback if I gift you a bunch of money so you can build a bigger and better deck? They earn more money and have an easier job budget wise because of me, so why shouldn't I get something too!?


But I guess we are all holy saints here, and I can see how people might get confused that other humans may take some advantage of other people's generosity because no photographer would ever dream of getting any kind of a deal, paying less for something than it is truly worth, or taking any kind of advantage offered to them...


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MattPharmD
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Aug 18, 2014 09:42 |  #25

Luckless wrote in post #17102361 (external link)
Friends are trying to sell a property. Photographer offered to do them a favour and provide better them with better photos to use so they can sell the property faster and use that money to do what they want. If you are hiring someone to build you a new deck then should the contractor and materials supplier give me a kickback if I gift you a bunch of money so you can build a bigger and better deck? They earn more money and have an easier job budget wise because of me, so why shouldn't I get something too!?


This is an apples and oranges comparison. Money for a deck would be more like the friend paying a cleaning service or someone to stage the house in order to help sell it. Providing photos (in the sense of being a creative work, as the RE photography folks will tell you), would be more like providing your friend with a unique design for their deck, and then the contractor claiming it was their design. You may have had no intention to charge the contractor or ever charge for deck design again, but you certainly didn't intend for someone else to take credit for your work. I know my comparison isn't really the same either in relation to the amount of influence over the friend's activity.

I would advise the OP to take the advice of several here that point him to simply address it with the agent. It may be that someone else (at the agency, maybe that doesn't realize who took the photos) placed the copyright notice on the photos. It may also be that they have never worked with a Real Estate photographer before, and don't know anything about the copyright of photos. They may think they are simply protecting the photos for their client by placing the notice on the photo. However, they may also think they actually have rights to the photos in the event the OP's friend needs to change agents (as they would had they taken the photos).


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Yaryman
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Aug 18, 2014 12:56 |  #26

Larry, to paraphrase Mr. Spock ( Star Trek ) your logic is flawed.

You are saying that because the economy WAS bad the Realtor should provide bad service NOW.

Look, helping your friend is great. If the house sells, then it benefits the OP's friend. It also benefits the Realtor.
Why are you helping out the person/company charging a 6% commission?

Do you go into a restaurant and then help the waiters and the cooks and then pay full price for the meal?

The OP's friend is paying for a service with that commission, and isn't getting that service from the Realtor.


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mikeinctown
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Aug 18, 2014 13:31 |  #27

Why are people even bringing up the commission? It doesn't matter if it is 1% or 50%. The issue is that the realtor placed their copyright in your photos. If it merely had the agents name listed then no big deal. However, the photos imply a copyright. Any person looking at those photos may think that the specific realtor takes better than average photos and so they should use that person as well, in order to sell their property faster.

The agent is lying and stealing. I would inform them of the issue.




  
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Buchinger
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Aug 19, 2014 14:42 |  #28

I'm sure it's due to the vast distribution and the muddy waters of knowing who the listing agent is. The listings from the database are available through a multitude of websites. I'm sure there is confusion of the term "copyright". They are the submitting agency of the photos - that's what the mark is for. It's as much about advertising for them. "Look how many nice houses XYZ has listed".

You did your friend a favor and they used the images as intended. The photo isn't on a billboard as advertisement for the agency. It's on a real estate listing and will be wiped out with the sale. I would be hoping the agent is happy with the photos and wants to throw you some cash for the next big listing they get!




  
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davebreal
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Aug 19, 2014 22:49 |  #29

The mistake here lies in your email delivery of non-watermarked photos w/ commercial value. If you wanted credit or payment for the images, this should have been agreed upon in writing before handing off the photos.

Yes, legally you can attempt to legally defend your copyright if you have the originals of the photos. My photos don't leave my computer w/o payment or acknowledgement terms.


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