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mayaone
08-07-2010, 07:13 AM
Hello all,
I have a photo of a Olympic gymnist. I am in that photo too. I bought it at a meet where she was posing with anyone for a price. The title of the chapter has her name in it but it isn't really about her and nothing is said negatively about her but do I have rights to that photo. My book is going to be published soon. I just signed the contract and the publisher didn't mention it.

Guardian
08-07-2010, 07:18 AM
Hm. I would think so, since you bought it and she was posing with people. I'm not 100% sure though.

Tirjasdyn
08-07-2010, 07:19 AM
If you bought it that doesn't necessarily mean you have the rights unless stipulated by the photographer. Might want to check with a copyright lawyer.

shaldna
08-07-2010, 07:26 AM
you should maybe talk with your publisher about this also.

blacbird
08-07-2010, 07:35 AM
If you bought it that doesn't necessarily mean you have the rights unless stipulated by the photographer. Might want to check with a copyright lawyer.

If you buy a book at a bookstore, that doesn't convey to you the right to reproduce that book freely. Unless the book is in public domain. Same principle applies here.

Medievalist
08-07-2010, 07:45 AM
Hello all,
I have a photo of a Olympic gymnist. I am in that photo too. I bought it at a meet where she was posing with anyone for a price. The title of the chapter has her name in it but it isn't really about her and nothing is said negatively about her but do I have rights to that photo. My book is going to be published soon. I just signed the contract and the publisher didn't mention it.

No. You do not.

You need the permission of the photographer, and a release from anyone else in the picture who is identifiable--even though the gymnast was presumably paid.

WildScribe
08-07-2010, 07:55 AM
No. You do not.

You need the permission of the photographer, and a release from anyone else in the picture who is identifiable--even though the gymnast was presumably paid.

This.

Monkey
08-07-2010, 08:43 AM
I wonder who your publisher is; it seems like a publisher would have picked up on this as a potential problem and looked into it before planning the release of the book.

charlotte49ers
08-07-2010, 08:46 AM
You definitely need to contact the photographer. Because you own a print does NOT mean you own the rights to the image (I'm a photographer).

(and ditto about needing a release from anyone in the picture that is considered a primary subject)

colealpaugh
08-07-2010, 09:19 AM
You definitely need to contact the photographer. Because you own a print does NOT mean you own the rights to the image (I'm a photographer).

(and ditto about needing a release from anyone in the picture that is considered a primary subject)


Double ditto.

Possibly on the bright side, I've never said no to an author who requested to use one of my photos (probably a dozen books, incl. two covers), nor did I want anything more than a credit line.

Jamesaritchie
08-07-2010, 10:01 PM
You may have the right to use it, and you may not. The only way to know is to contact the photographer.

MaryMumsy
08-07-2010, 11:44 PM
Would the answer be any different if the photo in question is over 100 years old, a studio portrait of an ancestor, and there is no hope in hell of finding out who the photographer was?

MM

IceCreamEmpress
08-07-2010, 11:57 PM
Would the answer be any different if the photo in question is over 100 years old, a studio portrait of an ancestor, and there is no hope in hell of finding out who the photographer was?


Yes, because the "over 100 years old" part means that it is in the public domain. (Presuming the print itself is over 100 years old, and that you're not using a copyrighted retouching/enhancing of it--that is an issue with, for instance, some of Mathew Brady's photographs.)

Theresa
08-08-2010, 12:17 AM
I would be quick with obtaining permission because if you already signed a contract with your publisher, you have surely signed to have all rights necessary. So your publisher will hold you liable if any issues with that photo arise. On the other hand, if the photografer or the Olympic gymnist forbid you to use that photo, you have to explain that issue to your publisher as quickly as possible.

Good luck!

mayaone
08-08-2010, 10:28 AM
I was really surprised I can't use a photo I am in. But I don't know who the photograper is because this was a meet in 1995. Who can I contact. Thanks all ps what If I blur her face and just show mine

Tirjasdyn
08-08-2010, 12:59 PM
I was really surprised I can't use a photo I am in. But I don't know who the photograper is because this was a meet in 1995. Who can I contact. Thanks all ps what If I blur her face and just show mine

Organizers of the meet, agents of the gymnast...if you can't find anyone don't use it. Blurring it doesn't matter, you don't own the rights, because you didn't create it.

megan_d
08-08-2010, 01:44 PM
I am curious as to who your publisher is. If they knew you intended to use this photo when they signed you I'm surprised they didn't ask about rights then.

Terie
08-08-2010, 10:09 PM
I was really surprised I can't use a photo I am in. But I don't know who the photograper is because this was a meet in 1995. Who can I contact. Thanks all ps what If I blur her face and just show mine

To expand on what Tirjasdyn said, the copyright belongs to the creator (unless the creator sells the copyright), not the subject. In this case, the photographer is the creator, while you and the other gymnast are subjects. Thus, the rights to the photo aren't yours (or the gymnast's, for that matter), and you can't use the photo without the copyright owner's permission.

It would be similar to you writing an article about someone in your community. The person whom the article is about couldn't copy the entire article into a book they're writing without your permission, because you own the copyright to the article. And if they did want to use it, you'd be smart to ask for monetary compensation for your permission.

That's simply how copyright works. It's about the rights of the owner, not the subject.

colealpaugh
08-09-2010, 10:28 AM
I was really surprised I can't use a photo I am in. But I don't know who the photograper is because this was a meet in 1995. Who can I contact. Thanks all ps what If I blur her face and just show mine

There are always exceptions with different venues, but blurring a face only protects you from the gymnast recovering for unauthorized use of her likeness and not for using an image belonging to the photographer.

This is a 15 year old meaningless snapshot that I can almost guarantee the photog couldn't care less what you do with. But "almost guarantee" isn't 100%. Are you absolutely certain you didn't mention to the photog you might someday use it on a book cover? If they said "sure, whatever", then that would be binding. I'm also assuming you only bought the print and not the negative, and that you're scanning the photo. If the negative had been included, it would have assumed you had all rights.

Any chance other photogs were shoulder to shoulder with the professional?

thothguard51
08-09-2010, 09:22 PM
Would the answer be any different if the photo in question is over 100 years old, a studio portrait of an ancestor, and there is no hope in hell of finding out who the photographer was?

MM

Yes and Yes...

1...Over 100 years old would more than likely make it public domain by now. All you would have to do is a search to see if anyone else has used it or applied for a copyright on it, such as a publisher.

2...No chance in hell of finding out who the photographer was... The Orphan copyright law covers this one I believe. All the person using it has to do is make a diligent search for the photographer, artist, or writer associated with the work in question. Of course, it does not free you from law suits should the copyright holder appear later, but it will limit the damages....

If...I got the new Orphan Copyright law straight. Not sure I agree with it though because the search terms are rather narrow and vague...

adktd2bks
08-09-2010, 10:15 PM
If you're planning to blur her face then what is the point of using that photo at all? Just curious.

mayaone
08-11-2010, 10:41 AM
wow, I had no idea. My publisher is in the UK and he has no idea who the gymnist is and how I got her photo. I don't want to blur her face but I think she is a public figure and I can use her photo without her permission if I am in it. As for the photograper, might the back of the photo have a clue. I haven't sent it to my publisher yet. He only knows about it by reading the chapter naming her. BTW,I did get permission to use quotes from a book "The four agreements" and signed a contract with them. I just won't use the photo if I can't find the photograher but it would be a shame because the point of the photo was about how funny I look next to her. I was 70 lbs more than I am now. I just signed the contract with my publisher this week and I still have to give them the "finished" product. Thanks all, and wish me luck Maya

BenPanced
08-11-2010, 05:38 PM
wow, I had no idea. My publisher is in the UK and he has no idea who the gymnist is and how I got her photo. I don't want to blur her face but I think she is a public figure and I can use her photo without her permission if I am in it. As for the photograper, might the back of the photo have a clue. I haven't sent it to my publisher yet. He only knows about it by reading the chapter naming her. BTW,I did get permission to use quotes from a book "The four agreements" and signed a contract with them. I just won't use the photo if I can't find the photograher but it would be a shame because the point of the photo was about how funny I look next to her. I was 70 lbs more than I am now. I just signed the contract with my publisher this week and I still have to give them the "finished" product. Thanks all, and wish me luck Maya
Doesn't matter. The photographer is the one with the rights to the photograph since they're the one who created the image. If the photographer didn't include any sort of contact information on the photo itself, usually on the back, or if you don't have some other document such as a letter or waiver from the photographer that explicity states your rights to reproduce the photo and permissions from others in the photo, I'm afraid you won't be able to use it.

Susan Littlefield
08-11-2010, 06:23 PM
I don't want to blur her face but I think she is a public figure and I can use her photo without her permission if I am in it. As for the photograper, might the back of the photo have a clue. I haven't sent it to my publisher yet. He only knows about it by reading the chapter naming her. BTW,I did get permission to use quotes from a book "The four agreements" and signed a contract with them. I just won't use the photo if I can't find the photograher but it would be a shame because the point of the photo was about how funny I look next to her. I was 70 lbs more than I am now. I just signed the contract with my publisher this week and I still have to give them the "finished" product. Thanks all, and wish me luck Maya

Mayaone, you cannot use the photograph without permission of both the photographer and the gymnast, even if you blur her face. Would you be able to contact whoever set up the meet to find out who the photographer is? :)

Silver King
08-12-2010, 04:07 AM
Mayaone, you cannot use the photograph without permission of both the photographer and the gymnast, even if you blur her face...
The gymnast was a public figure at the time, so I wouldn't worry about getting her permission to use the image. But you'd better believe, as has been mentioned, that the photographer has to give consent to use his work.

A couple of years ago while browsing through a sporting magazine, I came across a picture I'd taken the year before. It's a shot of a tarpon jumping with the fisherman and his boat in the background. I know the man who was fighting the fish and sent him a copy of the image, which he then sold without my knowledge or consent. Not only did I recoup the money he was paid, but I also received a handsome check from the magazine as well.

Had the man asked me beforehand if he could sell the shot, I would have given him permission, in writing, stating that we split the proceeds from the sale. But he felt, much like the OP of this thread, that since he was one of the subjects in the photograph that he could do with it as he wished. He discovered the hard way that he was wrong.

Silver King
08-12-2010, 04:57 AM
By the way, this is the image I am referring to in my previous post:


http://i200.photobucket.com/albums/aa62/Silver-King/Tarpon07-02-07048-2.jpg

poetinahat
08-12-2010, 05:08 AM
Biggest lure I've ever seen. Dang, the fish must've been something...

charlotte49ers
08-12-2010, 05:11 AM
The gymnast was a public figure at the time, so I wouldn't worry about getting her permission to use the image. But you'd better believe, as has been mentioned, that the photographer has to give consent to use his work.

A couple of years ago while browsing through a sporting magazine, I came across a picture I'd taken the year before. It's a shot of a tarpon jumping with the fisherman and his boat in the background. I know the man who was fighting the fish and sent him a copy of the image, which he then sold without my knowledge or consent. Not only did I recoup the money he was paid, but I also received a handsome check from the magazine as well.

Had the man asked me beforehand if he could sell the shot, I would have given him permission, in writing, stating that we split the proceeds from the sale. But he felt, much like the OP of this thread, that since he was one of the subjects in the photograph that he could do with it as he wished. He discovered the hard way that he was wrong.

Oh man, I would be so ticked!!

And honestly, this really proves how much education is needed in copyright law, especially in photography. Thinking because you are in the shot or own the print = owning the rights to the picture is a common misconception. I have that whole section bolded in my contract. :D

And that is an freakin' awesome picture.

Silver King
08-12-2010, 05:31 AM
Biggest lure I've ever seen. Dang, the fish must've been something...
I thought for sure I'd reduced the size of that image before it was posted, if only to make the name of the boat illegible!


Oh man, I would be so ticked!!
I wasn't angry at all, mostly surprised at the time, to see the image and think, "Hey! I took that shot. What the heck's it doing in this pub?"


And that is an freakin' awesome picture.Thanks. :)

charlotte49ers
08-12-2010, 06:01 AM
I wasn't angry at all, mostly surprised at the time, to see the image and think, "Hey! I took that shot. What the heck's it doing in this pub?"


You are a better person than me! lol I guess it really would depend on the situation, more than anything else.

mayaone
08-12-2010, 07:22 AM
Well, I guess I have to do some research or nix the photo thanks

ishtar'sgate
08-12-2010, 07:24 PM
No. You do not.

You need the permission of the photographer, and a release from anyone else in the picture who is identifiable--even though the gymnast was presumably paid.
This. I've already obtained a release from the photographer who took a picture I'd like to have go on the cover of my next book. The publisher may not go along with it but at least I have my release if they do. You always need permission unless it's a photo you took yourself.

Celia Cyanide
08-12-2010, 08:00 PM
Mayaone, you cannot use the photograph without permission of both the photographer and the gymnast, even if you blur her face.

I am a model, and this is not really accurate. The gymnast is a public figure. Anyone can photograph her and use/sell the photo while she is a public figure. If she were not, you would also need her permission.

But yes, even though you are in the photo does not mean you have the right to do anything you want with it. I can post my photos from modeling jobs online, but for print, or any commerical use, I need permission from the photographer.

mayaone
08-13-2010, 08:56 AM
Thank you Celia, your movie sounds like my book only in that it's about agoraphobia and part of it deals with how I lived in boxes in my walk in closet for years. I'm sure yours is not related but it was still eerie reading that. Aloha Maya and thanks

Susan Littlefield
08-13-2010, 06:34 PM
I am a model, and this is not really accurate. The gymnast is a public figure. Anyone can photograph her and use/sell the photo while she is a public figure. If she were not, you would also need her permission.

The original poster didn't take the photograph, thus my response that she can't use it without permission. However, I think someone else also said that she would not need permission of the public figure, just of the photographer. I stand corrected. :D


But yes, even though you are in the photo does not mean you have the right to do anything you want with it. I can post my photos from modeling jobs online, but for print, or any commerical use, I need permission from the photographer.

This I did not know.

charlotte49ers
08-13-2010, 08:30 PM
I am a model, and this is not really accurate. The gymnast is a public figure. Anyone can photograph her and use/sell the photo while she is a public figure. If she were not, you would also need her permission.

But yes, even though you are in the photo does not mean you have the right to do anything you want with it. I can post my photos from modeling jobs online, but for print, or any commerical use, I need permission from the photographer.

This is still photographer specific, fyi. I give web-sized, watermarked files for online sharing, but unless the disc had been purchased w/ print rights, they can't use a scanned image online (per my contract) or alter the one I've given them in any way (cropping, editing, or removing my watermark).

Celia Cyanide
08-13-2010, 09:04 PM
This is still photographer specific, fyi. I give web-sized, watermarked files for online sharing, but unless the disc had been purchased w/ print rights, they can't use a scanned image online (per my contract) or alter the one I've given them in any way (cropping, editing, or removing my watermark).

Yes, you're right. There are many different releases and agreements. I do not buy photos, but when I do trade (model for photos) or get paid, that is usually what I get.

I do believe that if there is no release (some do trade work without a release) then the photographer and model can post them online.

mayaone
09-01-2010, 03:50 AM
I took a photo in 1997 with a famous gymnast. Ok, I learned at AW. Ihave no right to use that photo in my book. I found the photo and there are numbers in the back. Can I use those numbers to find photograper. I called all the gym clubs to see if they know but so far no luck. I really really want to use this photo. Do I have any recourse? Thanks

Williebee
09-01-2010, 03:53 AM
Can't answer that without knowing what the numbers are. They could be a date sequence, a processing batch number...

If I remember this correctly, you know the when and where the photo was taken. If you can find the organizations responsible for that event, you might be able to find out who their photographers were. (That is assuming it was taken by one of their photographers.)

Good luck.

ETA: Clearing up something from the OP, for folks new to the story, you were IN a photo that was taken by a photographer, yes?

Susan Littlefield
09-01-2010, 05:38 AM
I remember this post well too. The OP was in the picture too. Several people concurred that she would need permission from the photographer only. Without that permission, she cannot use the photo.

Mayone, I agree with Willebee- see if you can call whomever put on the event to find out who was the photographer. Good luck!

thothguard51
09-01-2010, 06:17 AM
I just did a google search, 1997 gymnast photos, and gets pages and pages of links. From college to international events and clubs. Some are listed by the photographers who covered the events...

Good luck...

mayaone
09-01-2010, 08:52 AM
wow, I did a search and came out empty. I did it with the specific event. but I did call the oldest gym oranization in hawaii and she will ask someone who takes photos for them. I found out if the op is a public persona it is no problem to use their photo. That is part of the deal when you get famous and are getting paid for said photo. well I will try your link Thoth and thanks no pen intended.

mayaone
09-01-2010, 09:07 AM
Here is the number in back of the photo

812 D2C0M0Y2A317C20 R122061135B1187

I would appreciate any help. Hawaii 1997 I added date aloha

BenPanced
09-01-2010, 09:11 AM
wow, I did a search and came out empty. I did it with the specific event. but I did call the oldest gym oranization in hawaii and she will ask someone who takes photos for them. I found out if the op is a public persona it is no problem to use their photo. That is part of the deal when you get famous and are getting paid for said photo. well I will try your link Thoth and thanks no pen intended.
I would seriously rethink using the photo based on this information I've highlighted. It's like saying "oh, well, John Lennon's famous so it's part of the deal his estate should expect I upload these mp3's I ripped from his CDs and put them up on Limewire". Whoever told you that doesn't clearly understand intellectual property: it's not up to anybody but the photographer to give you permission to use the photo. Full stop. End of story. You may have a copy of the photo, but you have no choice on how it's used and reused in the public realm, which includes using it in a book you've written.

And I'm probably going to get the Stern Finger Of Authority shaken in my face for rule-mongering, but it would also behoove you to simply locate the original thread you'd created on this subject and update it, rather than starting a new one. The mods get cranky when they have to merge threads.

mayaone
09-01-2010, 09:32 AM
Thank you I put the number of the photo and did some of the things they recommended. I thought this part of AW was a special group you joined to make friends and told them my story. I will not use the photo if I can't get permission. Sorry if I got that wrong

poetinahat
09-01-2010, 09:34 AM
Three threads on the same topic. I've merged them into one - please keep the discussion here.

Polenth
09-01-2010, 09:41 AM
Here is the number in back of the photo

812 D2C0M0Y2A317C20 R122061135B1187

I would appreciate any help. Hawaii 1997 I added date aloha

The codes on the back of photographs mean stuff, but they won't tell you the name of the photographer. Some codes give details about the prints (as in technical details of how the print was altered), but it doesn't look like one of those. Given the nature of your code, I'm guessing it gives details about the camera. None of that will help you find the photographer.

mayaone
09-01-2010, 09:48 AM
Thank you Polenth, I was getting desperate because I have to send everything including photos to the publisher. I just want to be rid of this epic of 246 pages that has taken most of my life. I still have one more place to go and if that doesn't pann out, I'll omit the photo and maybe the chapter. aloha for your help maya

JoNightshade
09-01-2010, 09:58 AM
Maya, I very strongly suggest you tell someone here the name of your publisher. You can just post it here or send someone a private message. The fact that they have nothing to do with the photo and it seems like they wouldn't even care if you left a chapter out of the book at the last minute raises a lot of red flags for me. We don't want you to get ripped off or taken advantage of. The kind folks here at AW can tell you if the publisher is legitimate or if they are going to take advantage of you.

Polenth
09-01-2010, 11:16 AM
Thank you Polenth, I was getting desperate because I have to send everything including photos to the publisher. I just want to be rid of this epic of 246 pages that has taken most of my life. I still have one more place to go and if that doesn't pann out, I'll omit the photo and maybe the chapter. aloha for your help maya

It sounds like the best bet is to rewrite the chapter without the photo. You can describe how it felt standing next to a really tiny gymnast without showing it in a picture.


Maya, I very strongly suggest you tell someone here the name of your publisher. You can just post it here or send someone a private message.

Her publisher is Chipmunka (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92347). Probably best to keep that discussion over in the publisher thread.

KTC
09-01-2010, 01:22 PM
Maya, I very strongly suggest you tell someone here the name of your publisher. .

She has. There's a LONG thread in Background and Bewares about the heinous publisher she signed with. I can't believe she says here that the contract was signed just last week----after the discussion in said thread.

CHIPMUNKA PRESS:

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92347


Do not use the photo unless you get explicit permission to do so from the photographer.

KTC
09-01-2010, 01:25 PM
Her publisher is Chipmunka (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92347). Probably best to keep that discussion over in the publisher thread.

oops. didn't see this.

poetinahat
09-02-2010, 10:44 AM
Maya, people trying to help you and warn you is not "negativity". Actually, it's the opposite: it's that people don't want to see you disappointed, hurt or cheated. They wouldn't bother to respond if they didn't care!

If you don't care to listen, that's your prerogative. But if you're not going to listen unless you get the answers you want, please don't waste people's time with questions.

But yes, the choice is yours, and I'm sure everyone wishes you the best.

brainstorm77
09-02-2010, 02:51 PM
Thank you I put the number of the photo and did some of the things they recommended. I thought this part of AW was a special group you joined to make friends and told them my story. I will not use the photo if I can't get permission. Sorry if I got that wrong

What does the topic of this thread have to do with making friends? When you post here at AW on any topic, chances are not everyone is going to agree with you.