Last two weeks were about posting quality work and finding thieves stealing it… this week is about getting paid for your copyright.
You will read all kinds of feldercarb all over the web concerning this subject, when it comes to Photography. Most all of that is exactly that, feldercarb! The amateur Photographer far outnumbers the Professional Photographer actually making his/her living solely from Photography!
In this day and age those amateurs can be very vocal, very easily. Bottom line… yes as soon as you create an image you hold the copyright to that image. However! To get paid well for that copyright your image must be registered with the United States Copyright office.
If your image is not registered there, the very most you could get paid for that image is in Small Claims Court with a maximum payout of $1,000.00… and good luck getting paid! In order to have a copyright attorney accept your case, the very first thing they will require is registration with the copyright office!
This is because now they can bring suit in Federal District Court and the fines are MUCH higher! More money? Also means more for them. Please understand… these same laws are what Singers make their money from, Movie Producers, and Authors. I do not have to tell you how much Taylor Swift is worth… And that young lady put together all of her wealth completely on her own!
Yes, she has a team, but if you really wish to learn how much hutzpah this lady has, go watch her documentary. ‘Nuf said about Taylor. Registering your work with the copyright office is not hard, and yes it’s well worth your time to check it out. The rewards can be in the many thousands of dollars.
No, you do not have to register each individual image per se, you can register a group of images. Yes it benefits you greatly to employ a copyright attorney to go after infringements, and yes they might take up to 50%…
But if one image made you $500,000.00 in court, would you have a problem giving the attorney half of that for all the trouble it takes to go after them? Nope! Neither would I.
One very important thing to remember here… the amount of amateur Photographers out there allowing their art to be used willy nilly anywhere you can think of… is one of our biggest problems. This is why image theft is so rampant. Those amateurs will not sue, and the thief knows that.
So the biggest way we can combat image theft is to start suing for it! There are many other factors on this topic, and we could discuss it for years! My best advice? Is to research copyright with the US Copyright office at Copyright.gov
I’m keeping this short on purpose! This topic is riddled with controversy! This is why I’m sending you straight to the horse. Research this! Yes you can make a LOT of money from the theft of your art… but you MUST accept responsibility for your own due diligence.
Now For Some Fun Stuff!
As I type this my other computer is busy at work as well, getting ready for the launch of my online community, ByWinslow Campfire. I’ve stated many times that we should go outside our comfort zones in the creation of our work.
Well? I’m taking my own advice and jumping way outside my comfort zones! I have been a still Photographer for more decades than I care to admit. I have also taught classes in person, on purpose, because I enjoy the interpersonal connections I’ve made, for over two decades now.
Well a couple of years ago I vowed to never endure Las Vegas Summers again, and hit the road when the temps got warm. I no longer wish to endure anything above 80 degrees, and only for a short, few hours at that temperature.
With being on the road I missed those connections, and they missed me. So my solution? Take my lessons online with me. I’m mobile, so take my operations mobile as well. This has been an ADVENTURE! To say the least! Now I’m learning all sorts of new things, and accepting HUGE challenges and roadblocks.
One of the largest challenges has been redoing my website, and learning new techniques there. I even built a new website just for video uploads, because I did not wish this one to get so large that it loaded slow. And did you read video?!? Wow! That’s placing myself out there isn’t it? Along with another new set of necessary skills.
So yes, behind the scenes I’ve been working on this for over three months solid now, and I’m having a blast! I’m also learning a shit ton of new stuff! Thank Yoda for the assistance of my buddy Ted Vieira Consulting.
I haven’t had to trouble him too much because he’s taught me so well over years about all things websites. However I did run into a bit of a sticky wicket once in awhile. The long and short of it? Ted has been telling me I should do this for as long as we’ve been friends.
I’ve finally listened to his excellent advice! This has been fun! Challenging yes, but lots o fun! Now do I wish to be some YouTube Sensation? No I do not. However I do have a channel set up, and in a week or two I’ll place a video up there and ask ya’ll to go like and subscribe to my channel.
You never have to look at agin if you don’t want to but in order to get your channel certified by Google/Youtube, you need 100 active subscribers. After I reach 100? You’ll never hear me ask for that like and subscribe button again, cuz I hate that. If I like ya, I’ll come back. But that’s a topic for another blog post.
I’m currently loading Videos directly to my own website ByWinslowCampfire.com
The YouTube Channel will be uploaded in a week or two. I’ll let you know when it’s live here in my blog.
So! This has been fun guys!
I highly recommend stepping out of your comfort zones! I now remember that I used to do this a lot, and it was fun back then! So cheers to me for getting out of my crotchety old self and trying new things later in life!
I highly recommend doing so not matter what your age might be!