Episode 134

Diana MacDonald is Introducing Herself

I have been a professional photographer since 1993, and have been shooting stock photography since 1996 when I moved to Florida and landed a job as an in-house stock photographer for SuperStock, a stock agency in Jacksonville. In 1998 I left the agency and branched out on my own, shooting what is known as macro stock for a company called Eyewire, which had previously been owned by Adobe, and was bought out by Getty Images. I shot exclusively for Getty for many years, but with the advent of microstock agencies, the business changed drastically, so I now shoot for 5 micro agencies as well as for Getty and for Alamy (a UK based macro stock agency.)

Social Media and the Use of Images

Many Social Media platforms are full of images used without permission. In our conversation, we do mention Steemit a lot since that is the platform we met.

In Diane’s opinion, Steemit allows the illegal use of images because the community is expected to be self-policing. They do not tolerate plagiarism, which means claiming the image is your own. You can attribute her work to Mickey Mouse and it is OK with Steemit. Plagiarism is not illegal, but copyright infringement is. 

Incorrect sourcing is also considered copyright infringement. Google is not a source. It is a search engine. The SOURCE is the photographer.  Web MD etc.   is not a source. It is a website which most likely paid a licensing fee for an image.Diane Photographer

Of course, this kind of behavior is rampant on all social media websites. The countless meme being shared over and over again on Facebook or Twitter use often – or maybe most of the time- a photo grabbed from the web.

Diane says that anything published online can be found on the web. Contributors are taking a lot of chances by infringing on copyright. Agencies and photographers DO go after infringers. It is very easy to do a reverse search and find their work.

Not knowing is not accepted as being an excuse in the courts! The user is expected to track down the real source of every image used. Diane was recently paid a sum which Getty collected from the illegal use of one of her images on the web.

In the world of advertising and graphic design, it is NOT OK to simply take an image and cite the source!  Professionals just don’t work that way. You cannot copy a copyright image and simply give a SOURCE. Only the copyright holder has the right to use the images. All Rights Reserved means just that. The copyright holder owns ALL rights, so permission must be given to the user, regardless of whether a source is cited or not.

The problem with sites like Pixabay etc. is that that they take the word of the persons uploading an image. If they say that they own the copyright and that they are waiving copyright ownership, Pixabay and similar companies will accept that. 

However, this is not always the case. Now, this is important to know:

Pixabay is not liable, but the person uploading AND THE END USER are liable for any infringements.

Another problem with using images from Pixabay etc. is that many do not understand the world of model and property releases.

The images may have been uploaded by the person who has taken the photos, some properties may not be used without a property release. Certain buildings may not be used at all in stock images, but the photographers on Pixabay probably don’t know those restrictions.

It is illegal, for example, to license images of the Eiffel Tower at night. The same holds true for many city skylines and for anything related to Disney.

Using images of people is particularly troublesome because the end user has no idea whether legitimate model releases were obtained from the models.

Also if people are taking images off the web and not getting them from the proper stock source, they have no idea what restrictions there are on the use of those images. This could lead to some nasty legal entanglements. Images are licensed for specific usage when they are Rights Managed Images. Royalty Free Images may be re-used by the licensee WITH CERTAIN RESTRICIONS.

If you are simply taking an image off the web, you have no idea what those restrictions are!

Links to all of photographer Diane Macdonalds agencies can be found at her website: dianemacphoto.com

She is a member of the Copyright Alliance: http://copyrightalliance.org/

  • Most of this article was written by Diane and is used with permission.


Claire and Mark

Claire & MarkClaire is back, this time with her husband Mark, for the second segment of her Homesteading section of the Sustainable Living Podcast.

In this segment, we not only meet Mark but find out a bit more about their history and how they are planning to move forward.

Right now, the top priority is their house – but listen in to hear about badgers showing up, calfs being always born when Mark is at work and so much more.


Find Us on Steemit

Diane @dmcamera

Claire @fishyculture

Mark @longsilver

Marianne @mariannewest

The Podcast @sustainablelivin

In this episode, our guest is starting an online business

From Peru to a Sustainable Coffee Business in San Diego

Claire’s Debut at the Podcast

Two New Voices on the Podcast



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