Have you seen this photo?

July 31, 2013 § 32 Comments

Have you seen this photo on Pinterest linking to someone elses blog or web site?  Have you seen it on Facebook?  People keep hijacking this photo and using it without my permission.   I’ve written emails asking that the photo be removed from their site.  I’ve made the photo private on Flickr and then made it public again because my own blog doesn’t have access if it is private.

In the past I’ve uploaded and stored all my blog photos on Flickr.  That way I don’t have to upload them twice. Once to Flickr and a second time to my blog.  But with the new flickr changes combined with the misuse of this photo, it makes me want to close down my account.  Sigh.

It’s a double sided dilemma.  I can’t imagine re- uploading the photos to my blog (and then flooding the feed readers) on every single blog post since the beginning of time.

Any advice? What would you do?

§ 32 Responses to Have you seen this photo?

  • jo says:

    Anita,
    Don’thave a blog, don’t see myself ever doing it, so take my comment for what it is worth. I admittedly don’t know all the issues that concern you. However, one thought occurred to me. If you have all your photos stamped with your Watermark (is that the correct term or is it logo?) Anyway, whatever you call it, wherever the photo is used or reproduced (and no, I haven’t seen it that i recall, but that doesn’t mean i didn’t ) your blog is advertised every time. Maybe you could consider it free advertising?

    • Anita says:

      Thanks Jo! I have not been watermarking my photos up to this point. But I’m sure that would help if I start now and moving forward. I’m just not sure how to back track everything up to this point.

      I guess I have lots of concerns… the misuse of my photos… the trouble with the new Flickr format… retroactive steps on everything I’ve done up to this point. It is all overwhelming to me at this point.

  • Blue.Ridge.Girl says:

    Can you rule out that they are not getting it from your blog? Let me do a bit if research and talk to a few techie friends and see if I can come up with any thoughts & suggestions about this.

  • Kelly says:

    If it’s not a photo of my original work I usually don’t get overly worked up about it. If someone wants a photo of a stack of fabric that I shot that bad, so be it. If they take my photos of my original quilt designs or something like that and claim them as their own I throw a royal fit. Just what I do. Hope you figure out a plan that works for you. When it hits the internet and it’s good it will probably garner some attention at some point.🙂

    • Anita says:

      I agree. It is a pretty insignificant photo. In the past I’ve waffled over even saying anything at all. But recently it has been used by a well-known author and book publisher. They, of all people, should know better. Even if it is just a casually use in a funny way.

  • fortquilt says:

    I would leave the past the past and forget about it. But in future, do what you have in the photo above and add the text referencing your blog. Even this strategy can be foiled, but it makes it more difficult to use your photos without recognition.

  • Lettyb says:

    Groan. Sorry Anita, this really is yuck. I, like you, have experimented and I’m not sure what the solution is. Perhaps a Photoshop macro that will add your watermark to your picture quickly from here on out? Such a bummer.

  • marianne says:

    My only thought was also a big, white watermark (down to 15% opacity or so) in Photoshop. Just start now and forget about the past images, unless you wanted to do some Very Important Images from the past? Too bad people steal. I think the younger generation of web/graphic designers doesn’t really have a concept of image ownership – they’ve grown up with the ‘net.

  • nicolette says:

    I never upload a photo to my blog from Flickr. I still haven’t figured out how to upload more than one Flickr photo to one post on WordPress.
    I left a comment on Flickr, because I think people just make screen shots of your photos, as you have disabled the download option of your Flickr photos!
    BTW… the new Flickr is awful!

    • Anita says:

      I link my photos from WordPress to Flickr. I can’t figure out how to do more than one photo from Flickr to WordPress either. And I’ve thought about switching to Ipernity and shutting down my Flickr account. But the thought of re-connecting all of my photos is overwhelming.

      • nicolette says:

        There’s a way to upload all your pictures quite easily to Ipernity. I’ve done so. They allowed portions of about 80 pictures at once. I became an Ipernity Club member, so I could upload an endless amount of pictures and I think they deserve some support. They are really the kindest people and I love that it’s a French based photo site. I love to support European companies.
        All we need now is that all crafting and quilting people change over to Ipernity so we can set up our groups there!

  • nicolette says:

    They can’t steel the fabrics, so they steel the picture…

  • nicolette says:

    Sorry, it’s me again. I tried to click and drag your picture, and it’s now on my computer dashboard (will throw it in the bin), so I think, that’s where people come and get your pictures, from your blog!
    You can change something in the WordPress photo settings, so they are kind of freeze-framed. I’m not sure how to do that though…

    • Anita says:

      I’m pretty sure they come from my blog or screenshots as well. At first I did have all sharing turned off in Flickr but now it’s selective sharing. I’ll look into that WordPress feature. Thanks!

  • Lizzie says:

    Good God, no! I hope the above gives you some advice from her techie friend; otherwise, I agree with the other advice :watermark from here on out and add to your super specials too. I’d been to a few blogs today actually, that had their flickr pics missing from the whole post. Now I know why.

  • Sara says:

    i haven’t seen the photo anywhere else, but maybe if you let your images be pinable from flickr then more people would link to your own site rather than stealing it? i’m not certain that would help but my guess is it would.

  • Dora Scheer says:

    The idea that an author would be so lazy as to steal your photo is disgusting. Wonder what the publisher would think!
    Given the vastness of cyberspace, it’s rather surprising people are able to discover these thefts.
    I’m very sorry this happened to you and hope you’ll find a solution that works.

  • Byrd says:

    Ugh. Sorry to hear about this but thank you for bringing this up. I have had a few of my photos pinned and while it’s flattering, it’s also maddening because I clearly ask readers not to do duplicate my images or words without asking. I do watermark all of my photos with a copyright brush I created in Photoshop. Sometimes I want to bury the watermark because I like the photo; other times it’s obvious. Another important issue is to link all of your photo info to the picture which can also be done in PS. I believe that this is protection for you should any legal issues arise. It kind of takes all the fun out of blogging – makes me think about dropping it altogether and spend more time on my projects. Take care, Byrd

  • Penny G says:

    Keep watermarking. I don’t use pinterest anymore because of this. Your photos are used and then become property of pinterest or some such garbage. I didn’t completely understand what was written so I only use pinterest on pinterest friendly sites and if the site doesn’t say I assume that it is copyrighted and I can’t use anything without asking. The only exception to my rule is businesses selling fabric that I buy. I use those pictures in my blog.

  • bean1 says:

    That is why I no longer blog and put my posts to draft. I do not use flickr, I left a few old photos up. Hope you got my letter, Hugs Meredith NJ

  • leeAnn says:

    I don’t worry about it. I figure the internet is public, and people will do what they will. When I see photos of my quilts around, I just take it as flattery. Looks like I’m in the minority on this one!

    • Anita says:

      I have many mixed emotions. I enjoy the community on the Internet and most people are quite nice about asking to share things. I’m waffling on where to draw the line. While the photo isn’t actually making money, thus infringing on copyright, it is being used by people who have the power to do so and should know better.

    • Tammy says:

      LeeAnn, I agree with you. We have to remember anytime we post something on the “internet” it really becomes public. If a person doesn’t want to share their photos, they probably shouldn’t post. I have to admit, if I see a project on a blog and I end up making it, I do take a screenshot of the photo so as I work on it I can see how the original artist placed materials/colors. It’s for my own use. I don’t sell it, share it, etc. I think a watermark across the photo would probably help. Anita, also what about the designers and manufacturers of the fabrics you stacked up and photographed; did you get permission to use them in a photo? I don’t mean to be “flipped about it” but it can go on and on.

      • Anita says:

        It definitely is a sticky wicket. I think there is a difference between taking a screen shot so that you can make the project. Or sharing a photo that links back to the original post giving credit to where you found it Taking photos of fabric is an even more gray area. There have been long discussions across the Internet about a fabric designer’s rights and the fabric user’s rights. People argue that if the designers are creating fabric, wouldn’t they want people to use it? And the designers argue that they have created images that are copyrighted. Should we be allowed to photograph it to say, “hey, look what I made?” Who’s property does it become when it is made into something else? I don’t know what is the right answer. I’ve heard so many good arguments on both sides of the fence.

        My only complaint about this latest use is that it is my photo and the user added stuff to it that credited her own web site without ever mentioning that it was my photo or even asking if it was ok to do so. Think of all the “grumpy cat” photos out there. Is it really ok to use someone else’s pet photos, write stuff across it and then post it all over the web? Yes, they are cute! But I have mixed feelings about anyone else using that photo other than the pet’s parents. Thankfully she didn’t use my finished quilt that I made from those fabrics.

        I guess I’m struggling with not wanting to be a grinch and not share anything with sharing and knowing where to draw the line of public use. This isn’t a stock photo that can be downloaded for free use from a web site selling or giving away photos.

  • Mandy says:

    The net is a funny place, but your pic is great and you should feel smug people choose to use it, watermarking is the way forward🙂 . I had a photo stolen for an auction site in Australia once and although initially annoyed, I did report it.. it did me me giggle someone tried to sell items from my photos..

  • Joyce says:

    I am so sorry to hear this, some people
    see something great and just feel entitled to take what they want.

  • Audrie says:

    Ugh, I’ve had the same problem. I used to upload all my pictures on Flickr and I no longer do for the exact same reason. I use a watermark though, but that doesn’t really do much of anything. I haven’t even been on Flickr in months.

  • Karen says:

    For the same issues and concerns you’ve stated, I no longer use flickr and have joined ipernity. I plan on learning more about watermarking too. I think what you’ve done with this photo, is a good step. I hope you can get the unauthorized use of it stopped. Perhaps you could just go back in your blog and watermark select ones?

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