Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Walter Banks, Apr 19, 2010.

  1. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    I have been involved in a discussion on copyright in another group.

    How close does image composition need to be to violate
    copyright and what determines copyright violation. I am looking for
    examples to illustrate protections (or not) offered by copyrights.

    Walter Banks, Apr 19, 2010
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  2. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    I am trying to find actual examples and then extrapolate to software.

    For example, the fine line of derivative works at one extreme it
    is starting with an image and photo shopping clouds into a clear
    sky and at another extreme going out to half dome and
    re-creating an Ansell Adams shot maybe in color.

    I completely agree the copyright owner often sets the standards
    for violation, for example J.P Getty material.

    Walter Banks, Apr 19, 2010
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  3. Walter Banks

    Eric Stevens Guest

    I think I prefer the second shot.

    The collection raises an interesting question. The EXIF data shows
    that you have claimed copyright under the name of 'Savageduck'. Is it
    possible to claim copyright under a nom-de-plume or must you be able
    to prove you are a legally identifiable person?

    Eric Stevens
    Eric Stevens, Apr 19, 2010
  4. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    You can use any name you want to as long as no fraud was intended.
    Proving that a pseudonym was yours is not actually all that difficult.

    Walter Banks, Apr 19, 2010
  5. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    What I am looking for is definitions of the dividing line. In music look at all
    the local watering holes in Texas that suddenly find themselves liable for
    royalties after hiring a garage band for a weekend gig.

    Walter Banks, Apr 19, 2010
  6. Walter Banks

    tony cooper Guest

    Never heard of her before this. Looking at her gallery, though, I see
    that she is an excellent photographer. Her detail, depth-of-field
    control, lighting, and overall quality of photography is excellent.

    What she does with them - her creative compositions - are right up
    there with Elvis on Velvet and Margaret Keane's big-eyed kid paintings
    in their appeal to me, and only slightly more appealing than the works
    of Thomas Kinkade.

    To do what Geddes does - no matter how unappealing the finished
    product - you have to start with good photographs.
    tony cooper, Apr 20, 2010
  7. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    The real question is, what does copyright protect?

    There is the obvious a simple copy is clearly a violation. At some other
    point there is a drive up to half dome with the $29.99 P&S walmart
    special is not likely to be confused with the work of Mr. A Adams.

    Somewhere in there are shades of gray and consequences. I am not
    looking for a career change just some examples that might be
    extrapolated to copyrights on software, the work that I do to, pay
    for my cameras. Copyrights on print publications and images are
    better understood I think

    Thanks for the comments

    Walter Banks, Apr 20, 2010
  8. My condolences.
    1. Under both U.S. law and the Berne convention, two photos can
    have identical compositions and not infringe on any copyrights.

    2. Under U.S. law, what constitutes a "derivitive work" is an issue
    of fact, as is what constitutes fair use. The statutes do not provide
    a quantitative measure of either one.

    3. I strongly suggest that you do NOT act on any advice or claims
    about copyrights from random internet posters. Consult an
    intellectual property attorney instead.

    4. You should assume that I am a random internet poster.
    Michael Benveniste, Apr 20, 2010
  9. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    It's a tough life
    Good advice. I once co-owned a publishing house. I am
    reasonably familiar with copyrights as it deals with printed
    material. (Including conversations with lawyers) My exercise
    here is to try to extrapolate to software based on what
    happens with accepted practice in print, music and photography.

    The key may be derivative works.

    Your first point is interesting. I know someone in the 80's
    who owned a software games company who had an
    "Indiana Jones" jacket and was successfully sued when
    his packaging had an image of himself. I will check to find
    out if he violated copyright or possibly a trademark.

    Thanks for the comments

    Walter Banks, Apr 20, 2010
  10. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    It sure is
    My understanding (from the publishing industry) is that registration
    basically fixes in time when a work is done, gives the Library of
    Congress a copy which they lose and changes the rules on damages
    you can collect
    I think that derivative works are going to be an issue in software
    copyrights. I would think that defining that line between a new work
    and an altered old work is going to be interesting.


    Walter Banks, Apr 20, 2010
  11. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    Yes and no. I expected that someone would have had a case of
    composition violating copyright. There are cases in the print
    publishing field of copyright violation for the theft of plot lines
    and story themes.

    As you said the fine line is likely to be derivative works.

    Walter Banks, Apr 20, 2010
  12. Walter Banks

    Walter Banks Guest

    Derivative works. Sheet music and performance licences all come into this. The copyright owner decides how they licence the work.

    Walter Banks, Apr 21, 2010
  13. Walter Banks

    Paul Furman Guest

    Photography is so hard to copy. You can copy the style but probably not
    as well, or perhaps better but that's not easy to sue over. It would
    take herculean efforts to copy a particular photo with smashing impact
    whereas a skilled painter can forge a classic painting pretty convincingly.

    Paul Furman

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
    Paul Furman, Apr 23, 2010
  14. Walter Banks

    Paul Furman Guest

    The fine line is money. If there's enough money in it, the lawyers will
    make it stick. Apologies for cynicism.
    Paul Furman, Apr 23, 2010
  15. No apology needed. In fact, it's part of the legal underpinnings of
    the U.S. case law of fair use!

    Quoting Justice O'Connor:
    Finally, the [copyright] Act focuses on "the effect of the use
    upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted
    work." This last factor is undoubtedly the single most important
    element of fair use.

    _Harper & Row v. Nation Enterprises, 471 U.S. 539 (1985)_

    Once again, I stress that I'm a random internet poster. Act
    Michael Benveniste, Apr 23, 2010
  16. Walter Banks

    Paul Furman Guest

    I would think she could sue if you attempted an exact copy of her setups
    with the very same props, same color background, etc. Maybe not? Maybe
    not worth her time? Probably easier & more effective to use a little
    different props & backgrounds to suit the situation.

    Paul Furman

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
    Paul Furman, Apr 24, 2010
  17. Walter Banks

    Paul Furman Guest

    I suppose the basis for a suit is usually potential lost revenue. If you
    used the exact same setup, same props and were cutting into her market,
    taking away her business, she probably could sue. If you advertised in
    the same maternity magazines, etc... in practice, it sounds like this
    has never happened. Odd because that sort of thing seems fairly common
    in other pursuits. If you built an exact (miniature) replica of the
    Eiffel Tower with their copyrighted night lighting, or any famous
    building by a litigious architect, and tried using that in a big money
    TV commercial, I'll bet they'd sue.

    Paul Furman

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
    Paul Furman, Apr 24, 2010
  18. Walter Banks

    Paul Furman Guest

    Odd that photography would get lesser protections but apparently true:
    "...all works *except photographic and cinematographic* shall be
    copyrighted for at least 50 years after the author's death... For
    photography, the Berne Convention sets a minimum term of 25 years..."

    Paul Furman

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
    Paul Furman, Apr 24, 2010
  19. I knew we wouldn't get out of this thread without mentioning that
    d*mned tree.

    I will point out that the tree is on private property and is not
    visible from public property (at least on land). So photographers
    are also subject to the terms of admission to the area.
    Michael Benveniste, Apr 25, 2010
  20. I don't remember how much I paid. But the payment of $9.25 for access
    establishes a contract. Pebble Beach Company claims the contract
    includes both the terms on the "ticket" an agreement to obey the posted
    signs, both of which state the prohibition against commercial use.
    In the past at least, Pebble Beach Company has disagreed with

    As far as I know, there is no case law testing either claim.
    But remember, I'm just a random internet poster. Pebble Beach
    Company is a very real, very wealthy, and a politically _very_
    well connected firm.
    Michael Benveniste, Apr 25, 2010
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