I begin to understand how completely frustrated pro photographers are by internet image-sharing behaviors.
So, okay, I know I’ve said before that I don’t care that much when people use my image. That’s absolutely still true. But I do care about publicizing Creative Commons licenses. And I care considerably more that photographers who make a living from their work get credit for it, and that George Takei’s very popular Facebook page is -TERRIBLE- about crediting image sources.
(Yes, yes, I’m also a massive fair use fan, and yes, this is arguably fair use. But 1) even when it is fair use, not crediting is douchey. (Though not usually a copyright violation.) But also 2) this is not remotely transformative, nor is it news reporting or commentary, and it’s definitely commercial use. For all that Takei’s FB page takes some of the form of a personal page, it very much isn’t. (Dude’s career rebound, which is awesome, has gotta be partially credited to this page.) I really do think personal noncommercial uses like J. Random Internet posting to Reddit or zir Tumblr or whatever are often fair use.)
Anyway, here’s the email I sent his team:
You have the right to use my Dalek egg photo – IF you comply with the terms of the Creative Commons license under which I released it. Which you have not.
It would not be at all difficult for you to do a two-second google search and find the source of the image, since I’m a copyright lawyer, and have several times written
about the copyright and Creative Commons issues involved in the rampant unauthorized reuse of my photo online (despite the fact that all it takes for the use to be authorized is to provide the full credits necessary under the Creative Commons license).
I’m not requesting that you take the image down, I’m requesting that you fix the post to comply with the terms of the Creative Commons license. If you can’t do that, then I’ll report the unauthorized use to Facebook, for them to take it down.
We’ll see what comes of that.
ETA (4/22, 8:09am Cntrl) – They fixed it, beautifully! Good on them!
Meanwhile, a lawyer friend, Mike Sadowitz, has figured out my long con here:
-Totally- how I planned it. (Except not. Happy Birthday again, Dalegg-owner!)
Second edit (4/22 am): last night, a very polite person on Twitter pushed me on my suggestion in the email that I would report their use to Facebook for takedown. I don’t agree that this is obvious fair use (as I said, commercial, non-transformative), but I do agree that reporting this would ultimately harm actual individuals just sharing content with their friends, and that I -wouldn’t- have exercised the takedown notice option for just that reason. So saying I would was kinda obnoxious, and I shouldn’t have done so.