A new legislation allowing the use of copyrighted work, has fired up the world of photographers and illustrators alike. The new Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act will change copyright laws allowing creative work, such as: Photography, Film, Text and Song to be exploited without any payment or knowledge of the creative owner, as long as they haven’t been registered or watermarked.
For us at Headshot London and photographers all over the world, this could mean the end of the photographic industry as we know it. Our livelihood is dependent on our clients and the selling of our photographic work. If our work was therefore available for the taking, then this could seriously affect our business. So let’s Stop photography copyright theft.
BBC Journalist Andrew Orlowski, has dubbed this the ‘Instagram Act’ and claims that “Most digital images on the internet today are orphans”. This means that the metadata is either missing or has been stripped out automatically by large organisations such as Social media site — Facebook. These orphaned pieces of work are therefore being exploited, for major commercial gain, with barely any effort going into the research of the creators behind them. If this continues to move in the wrong direction, professional photography could suffer a huge hit which could result in multiple court cases, denting a large hole in the British taxpayers pockets and driving photographers to the unemployment line.
An e-petition has come to our attention, which shows support against this new legislation and we want to share this petition with as many people as we can!
By sharing and signing this, we can put a stop to a law which has been labelled ‘premature, ill thought-out and constitutionally improper’. Currently today only 24,768 have signed the petition and we need it to reach over 100,000 for this to really make a difference. Professional and keen Photographers alike need to take action to prevent images from being used without our knowledge and permission. What if your family holiday photos, were suddenly used in an advertising campaign for the likes of ‘First Choice holidays’ and the first you knew of it, your kids are on a billboard… without your permission and without being paid… how would you feel?
Until this matter is resolved, our portfolio material shall have embed watermarks across all the photographs we wish to upload to the different online and social media platforms as well as our own website. It’s quite sad for us to deface our images in such a way, as we feel this is a violation of our work and our creative freedom.
We have very little time to put pressure on the government and I erge you all to stand up and make a difference.
If you can send the link below to as many friends as possible, that might help stop the government from helping giant industries from profiteering off the back of hard working people.