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Thread started 17 Dec 2008 (Wednesday) 16:01
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my latest case of copyright infringement...

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Dec 23, 2008 14:01 |  #181

forkball wrote in post #6933883 (external link)
This post gave me the biggest chuckle!

I was going to try to give you a chuckle and ask if your'e suing, but I was afraid you would have lost it at that point. :)

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Dec 23, 2008 14:31 |  #182

forkball wrote in post #6933883 (external link)
I think I'm actually done commenting on the situation and mainly trying to defend myself. It's clear that some here support and agree with me, and some do not. Nothing I say will change that. It's life with people. .....

When you post about suing a kid and/or a F100 compnay for ~$3 in damages, you should expect wildly varing reactions.

I think we've all posted something we wish we hadn't -- That's life.

Happy Holidays in any event!!!


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Dec 23, 2008 15:45 as a reply to  @ S.Horton's post |  #183

Slickmo wrote in post #6933852 (external link)
Holy crap! I made it to page 8 before I felt like I was reading the same thing over and over again!

I want to know who invited all the "lawyers", I thought this was a photography forum. Why can't you all just wish the guy luck with his issue instead of attacking him?

I'm curious as to how well you would handle it if this same thing happened to you?

1. I'm not a lawyer - And I will never try to decipher the law.
2. I'm a Wal-Mart employee - And I hope you win! Wal-Mart doesn't care about
its employees or customers, as long as they keep making money. (Just
working there while I finish my Fine Art Degree)
3. I'm behind you and agree with you 100% Forkball!

Please let us know how this ends!

Oh, and yes, this is my 1st post. So what? I just happened to read this thread first. (I'm really wondering why now!)

Welcome to the board! Don't let this scare you away. Most threads aren't this heated, and, despite how many times the same thing has been said on both sides, it's remained remarkably civil. That's a testament to the quality of participants here at POTN.

I would hope that there is an amicable solution for both sides (the OP and Wal*Mart, not necessarily the posters here ;) ) to this issue, and I don't see any reason why there couldn't be. It's not outrageous to expect any company to understand that someone else cannot waive photographers' rights for them. While there are needs for exceptions (see the Orphan Works topic discussed earlier for more), this isn't one of them. The employee knew the customer didn't take the shot, gave them a waiver for the photographer to sign, and accepted the customer's waiver of someone else's rights instead. While nothing is certain, that seems like a pretty easy case to make.

I know that I've had to prove I was the copyright owner of some of my images in the past, and greatly appreciated the printer taking the time to check and get it right. I'd rather deal with the inconvenience of their checking than watch untold amounts of money never make it my way because no one thought to do the right thing. If I'd seen it happen to me before, I'd probably be more strident about it.

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Dec 23, 2008 16:13 |  #184

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Dec 23, 2008 16:35 |  #185

I love this forum and the fact that we can debate over things like this in a civil way with out anyone being rude or getting their panties in a bunch.

Let me give you a real world example of how you might be right in the eyes of the law but would loose your court battle.

I have worked in commercial printing for the last 18 years. Shipping, printing, bindery, prepress and customer service. Ive worked for company's with 8 employees and ones with 60. Every one of them have belonged to the PIA witch is similar to PPA but for the printing industry and the dues are $5000 a year. With a company's membership comes a monthly magazine that reports on industry news, how to better manage your company for more profits, new technology, EPA issues etc.

A few years back a red an article. A hunting guide outfit had an independent graphic artist design them a brochure that they were going to distribute to boost their business. The graphic artist contracts out the printing to some company who prints them several thousand brochures. Some of these brochures go back to the guide company but most of them get sent to the mail house for distribution to the people on some particular mailing list. Guy gets a brochure in the mail and notices one of the pictures looks a lot like one that's hanging on his buddy's wall. Gives his buddy a call. Low and behold its is his buddy's image who's a landscape photographer and the image is registered. Photographer gets legal council, who are we going to sue. Well the hunting guide outfit doesn't have any money or assets as they only have labor and lease the property they hunt on, the graphic artist works out of his home so he's financially small but the printing company is a pretty large company and they seem to be the best target. Legal actions take place, winds up in court, come to find out one of the guys at the guide outfit lifted the image off the photographers website. Photographers case against the printing company gets tossed out. Did the printing company commit copyright violation, sure they did but the photographer didn't get squat from them, he should have went after the guide company who stole his image off his site.

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Dec 23, 2008 16:41 |  #186
bannedPermanent ban

"Oh.. and you CAN register online and it's only $35.00 and the process does NOT take a year. Not sure where these people are pulling all this nonsense information from, but I'm sure it doesn't smell pleasant. "

I will explain where the "nonsense" comes from.

You're confusing the time it takes to prepare and submit a registration (which can take less than 30 minutes) with the time it takes the copyright office to review your application and either issue a certificate of registration or a denial (which can take a year).

Of the applications I've made in the past couple of years, I've received a certificate between 6 months and a year later. Most recently a year. THEY ARE BACKED UP. If you want the review process expedited you have to pay more money than the $35 registration fee. ("special handling fee for a claim" = $685.)

It is possible the Copyright Office are returning electronically filed submissions in a more timely manner but that system is relatively new so we shall see.

You can not bring your lawsuit without having the certificate (or formal denial of registration) because the circuit courts have taken the position that section 411(a) is jurisdictional.

Translation for you : the federal district court (the trial court) that you must use to bring your copyright lawsuit does not have the authority to hear the case until your copyright has been registered (or denied).

I hope that explains the "nonsense" regarding the timing, cost and jurisdictional issues.

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Dec 23, 2008 22:47 |  #187

forkball wrote in post #6933284 (external link)
Thank you.

Oh.. and you CAN register online and it's only $35.00 and the process does NOT take a year. Not sure where these people are pulling all this nonsense information from, but I'm sure it doesn't smell pleasant. ;)

My last stack of PPh/Cons took one year and four months to process. Online only works for unpublished works and individual (NOT group) published images. That takes about three to four months to get the piece of paper in your hand.

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Dec 24, 2008 02:09 |  #188
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"Online only works for unpublished works and individual (NOT group) published images."

According to the Copyright Office, you can use the electronic system to file multiple published works if they are all first published together in the same publication on the same date and owned by the same copyright claimant.

http://www.copyright.g​ov/circs/circ40.pdf (external link)

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Dec 24, 2008 15:28 |  #189
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To add to the discussion.

Some may wonder how this administrative backlog effects the date of registration.

I publish my work on day 1. I file my registration application (including deposit of work and applicable fee) on day 2. The copyright office doesn't register my claim and send me my certificate of registration until, say, day 360. What day is the effective date of my registration?

That would be day 2. (Section 410(d) of the Copyright Act spells this out).

So long as you file a complete and acceptable registration you get the file date even though it takes the Copyright Office until some time later to register the claim.

As for what your effective date of registration must be to be eligible to request statutory damages and attorney fees?

That is spelled out in Section 412.

http://www.copyright.g​ov/title17/92chap4.htm​l#412 (external link)

One shouldn't sit around forever waiting to file a suit though. There is a statute of limitations on copyright actions. Three years. Read Section 507.

http://www.copyright.g​ov/title17/92chap5.htm​l#507 (external link)

The above is not legal advice. Don't rely on it. It may be inaccurate. It's for discussion purposes only. Legal advice can be obtained only from your own lawyer. Got it.

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Dec 24, 2008 15:35 as a reply to  @ ibdb's post |  #190

Thank you! And no worries, I have tougher skin than to let this little thing scare me away!

Now on the more picture taking....!

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Dec 24, 2008 18:27 |  #191

Forkball, I admire your resolve in sticking to this thread this long. I tried to read it through but gave up after 11 pages.

Just FYI, this is the statement on a copyright release from Lifetouch Portait Studios:

"Note: Federal and state copyright laws provide that the author of a work is the owner of it. Copying a work without the author’s permission is a
violation of the law. This is true whether or not the image contains a copyright notice on it. Lifetouch Portrait Studios Inc. (“Lifetouch”) owns the
copyright on the images and portraits taken by its photographers."

Love without truth is hypocrisy; Truth without love is brutality.

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Dec 24, 2008 22:00 |  #192

elguapo wrote in post #6941154 (external link)
Forkball, I admire your resolve in sticking to this thread this long. I tried to read it through but gave up after 11 pages.

You didn't get far enough. He gave up on it too! :lol:

forkball wrote in post #6933883 (external link)
So... on that note, I'm going to stop following this thread. I've unsubscribed myself from it and if I'm strong enough, I will avoid checking in on it.

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Dec 24, 2008 23:59 |  #193

Ok, I got tired after page 9...

All I can say is that sometimes you have to be careful what you wish for... So you want all these photo processing labs to verify without the benefit of the doubt the rightful copyright owner....

I can almost imagine a Federally passed equivalent of the DMCA.. All digital images MUST be stamped with a unique signature tied to a specific photographer. Photographer must PAY and register their digital signature with a central repository. When requesting prints, the digital file would need to be matched up with the signature and the authentic copyright owner has to electronically approve each and every photograph. All physical prints must have hidden signatures that identify the said unique signature. The copyright owner as defined in the repository must approve each and every print.

If that is the ONLY way to ensure that a copyright is not infringed upon, are you willing to go with that? Please note that you will have to verify every print that you make as well. Additional costs for signature as well as specialized cameras, paper and printers? Oh, and don't forget about time..

Just my $0.02.. Tell me how, in todays environment, it is possible for any photo lab to verify the original copyright owner.. I mean, can you imagine, you just shoot a wonderful wedding, and you upload your images to mpix.. Then you have to PROVE that you own each and every one of those photos...

In regards to be careful what you wish for.. There was a local community here that complained to high heaven that the local military airfield was causing too much noise.. They were flying 2 to 4 sorties a day, and that was way too much.. They eventually shut the military base down... Problem is, since this was no longer a no fly zone, it became a new approach and take offs for the local airport. So instead of 2-4 sorties a day, they now have 737s and 757s taking off and landing every 15-20 minutes!

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Dec 25, 2008 00:41 |  #194
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"I can almost imagine a Federally passed equivalent of the DMCA.."

Actually the part of the DMCA most relevant to this discussion is the part that relieves internet service providers of the same liability exposure that Walmart is dealing with. The OP was correct in his underlying complaint/point that copyright infringement attaches with strict liability. That is, it makes no difference if Walmart knew it was infringing or not (on the issue of liability. It does matter on the issue of the amount of damages).

All intermediaries of intellectual property have this strict liability issue to contend with. And internet service providers had it when people started posting infringing material online. The DMCA set up a mechanism which, if followed, immunizes ISPs from copyright infringement liability arising out of users of their sites posting infringing material.

So some "federally passed equivalent of the DMCA" in this context would not hamper commerce and impose additional burdens before printing could occur as you suggest but instead would provide a mechanism to relieve Walmart (and other print providers) from liability for operating in the ordinary course of business.

For example, you could say that print providers operating in the ordinary course may rely on the written representations of their customers concerning the customers right to make copies. A customer signs a form stating that they have the legal right to make copies and that is that. Any infringement action would exclude Walmart and be allowed only against the customer.

As to your solution. Yes, its another way to go but I don't think its likely at all. In the US we tend not to pass rules which burden commerce unless those rules are sought by power economic interests. And I'm not sure photographers collectively have that much clout.

-- Merry Christmas

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Dec 27, 2008 22:16 |  #195

cdifoto wrote in post #6898097 (external link)
OK then let me rephrase:

Not many good amateurs use Wal-Mart and their $8 an hour employees for their prints in the first place. Hubby most certainly wouldn't give her a print to scan and copy either. He'd give her the original file on a disk or memory card.

I guess it depends where you live. Our Wal-mart actually prints for several of the professional studios here in town. I have two friends that work there and have spoken to the photographers who do their printing there. Their results are pretty darn good and I do all my test prints there. I see no difference in the test prints and the prints I get from mpix and other labs I have used. There is one studio in town that does their own prints and their pictures suck. I paid 28.00 for my kids picture with Santa and was so disappointed with the prints. Anyway I don't think I would knock something that is consumer based just because consumers and not professionals you know use it.

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my latest case of copyright infringement...
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