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GaryH

Asked to remove images

Question

Hi and thank you in advance, 

 

I've been contributing on alamy for a couple of years but Never posted here before I am struggling to find the information I need online, I would be grateful if anyone had any knowledge on the subject. 

 

I have been contacted by quite a large UK company asking me to remove some images I have on various stock sites, they are images are of some of their staff at work in the street (no faces as shot from behind but the companies logo is visible on the back of the uniform) they are all marked as editorial only, to be honest they arent images that would win any award so I thought I would just delete them but I do wonder where i stand legally in the UK?

 

Thanks again 

 

Gary 

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I've just looked at the 3 pics and if they were mine, there's no way on this planet I'd take them down/edit out the name and resubmit/etc.  Fight this 'til the end because if those pics are taken down, editorial photography as we know it will be gone...  In my opinion, of course.

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30 minutes ago, Colblimp said:

I've just looked at the 3 pics and if they were mine, there's no way on this planet I'd take them down/edit out the name and resubmit/etc.  Fight this 'til the end because if those pics are taken down, editorial photography as we know it will be gone...  In my opinion, of course.

100% agree

Phil

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Metropolitan Police advice: Members of the public and the media do not need a permit to film or photograph in public places and police have no power to stop them filming or photographing incidents or police personnel.

 

I regularly photograph on the street for editorial news imagery and would certainly not delete such images.

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If Colas wished to purchase exclusive, perpetual rights to your images. At an acceptable price. Then fine. Otherwise I'd simply ignore them.

 

Also, why are they communicating with you directly? Surely they should be talking to Alamy - unless of course Alamy have alreary told them where to go.

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23 minutes ago, Russell said:

If Colas wished to purchase exclusive, perpetual rights to your images. At an acceptable price. Then fine. Otherwise I'd simply ignore them.

 

Also, why are they communicating with you directly? Surely they should be talking to Alamy - unless of course Alamy have alreary told them where to go.

If you think about the NT and various examples, Alamy don't do that- they tell us first.

Tending to agree with you. Refer them to Alamy and that's all. Unless you have a solicitor.

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Just tell them that as they were taken in the British Isles the images come under British laws NOT French law.

 

Allan

 

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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, GaryH said:

I had a little more communication with them this evening after I had ask for clarification on why I should remove the images. 

 

They said that because I hadn't asked permission to take the images of a member of their staff and their logo was present they should be removed, they obviously don't know what they are talking about and it seems like they are making it up as they go along, I've decided to leave the images up and stop communication with them, it will be interesting to see where it goes from here, I expect nowhere. 

 

They actually got my email through my business Facebook page, I wonder how many other images are like this online, there must be hundreds of not thousands. 

 

Anyway thank you all for the advice, its very much appreciated, if I receive anything remotely legal I will share the outcome. 

 

Thanks again

Gary 

I'd assumed you had a verifiable letter. I don't think I'd be corresponding by email on a matter that purported to be legal at all- other than to tell them that.

Edited by spacecadet

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I have had two similar experiences. One was a stone quarrying company in Isle of Portland where I had taken photos from slightly inside their yard even though customers could have access -  I removed those because I had to admit that I had strayed onto private land and they were correct that I could not have taken the shots from public property.

 

The other was a shopping centre in Hull which is on an old dock approached at one entrance by a walkway over the water. I couldn't be absolutely sure whether the picture was taken on the walkaway ( private) or on the dockside ( public). That one I did not remove and I just ignored them. My guess was it was from an over-zealous security guard.

 

I'd suggest politely telling them that the images were taken on public land and that you have every right to take photos there and do not intend to communicate any further. 

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1 hour ago, geogphotos said:

I have had two similar experiences.

Ian, so they approached you, via your website perhaps, rather than the library that you'd uploaded them to?

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In a slightly similar vein Alamy asked me to recaption a picture where I had described a portable prefab school building as "xxxx" style, where 'xxxx' refers to the brand of a well known PORTAble KABIN manufacturer if you get my drift. I did so of course since the picture is very unlikely to sell anyway, though it seemed to be a bit harsh since I only said it was in that style, which it was. I did think about going back and checking if it actually was made by them but I thought that my reason for hanging around outside a primary school with a pair of binoculars might be hard to get across.

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15 minutes ago, Harry Harrison said:

In a slightly similar vein Alamy asked me to recaption a picture where I had described a portable prefab school building as "xxxx" style, where 'xxxx' refers to the brand of a well known PORTAble KABIN manufacturer if you get my drift. I did so of course since the picture is very unlikely to sell anyway, though it seemed to be a bit harsh since I only said it was in that style, which it was. I did think about going back and checking if it actually was made by them but I thought that my reason for hanging around outside a primary school with a pair of binoculars might be hard to get across.

I had that with a portable toilet. In Germany.

I removed the trademark from the tags.I left in the two parts of the trademark, neither of which is in itself a trademark. One is a slang word for "toilet" and one is the Italian word for "door". The doors are in the image. So of course a search on the trademark will still return it.;)

May I suggest you do the same. Kabin is the Norwegian word for "cabin". And no doubt it has a door. Which Alamy's software will translate into "porta".

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32 minutes ago, Harry Harrison said:

Ian, so they approached you, via your website perhaps, rather than the library that you'd uploaded them to?

 

Can't remember how it went. 

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On 14/08/2020 at 17:25, GaryH said:

Hi here are the ID of the images in question

 

2A3Y6RR

RMM6BC

T0K4XK

 

Many thanks 

 

It's completely unreasonable for them to ask for their removal. They're in a public space and not showing their faces. I'd politely reply, declining their request. 

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On 14/08/2020 at 18:27, Colblimp said:

 

Fight this 'til the end because if those pics are taken down, editorial photography as we know it will be gone...  In my opinion, of course.

 

 

And mine. Most emphatically. There is NO WAY I would take these down. I would respond to the company saying that under UK law you have a perfectly legal right to take, displauy and license these photos and please could they explain why they feel they have a right to have them removed. We must not be bullied. As the Colonel says, it will be the end of street photography for all of us.

 

Alan

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1 hour ago, Inchiquin said:

 

And mine. Most emphatically. There is NO WAY I would take these down. I would respond to the company saying that under UK law you have a perfectly legal right to take, displauy and license these photos and please could they explain why they feel they have a right to have them removed. We must not be bullied. As the Colonel says, it will be the end of street photography for all of us.

 

Alan

+1 👍

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I had this through today, Laughable 

 

Dear Gary,
I had already noted that you had marked the images for editorial sale.

My main concern was for our employee. When we attend any of our sites on a photography shoot, we seek permission of those we are photographing giving our employees the option to not be photographed - there are always some who take this option as not everyone is comfortable with having their image used in the public domain in relation to their work. There can be any number of reasons for this.
As in this instance you did not check, we do not know is this employee is happy for their image to be used, they are easily identifiable as a result of wearing Colas branded clothing and they may not be willing for this to be in the public domain.

My reason for contact was as I explained in the first instance, clarification as to whether you had sought their permission. Whilst I appreciate you have not broken any law, obviously I am just ensuring that wherever possible we protect our staff.

Colas Ltd is a UK company.

 

i said take any action you wish but good luck with that basically, now blocked.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, GaryH said:

I had this through today, Laughable 

 

Dear Gary,
I had already noted that you had marked the images for editorial sale.

My main concern was for our employee. When we attend any of our sites on a photography shoot, we seek permission of those we are photographing giving our employees the option to not be photographed - there are always some who take this option as not everyone is comfortable with having their image used in the public domain in relation to their work. There can be any number of reasons for this.
As in this instance you did not check, we do not know is this employee is happy for their image to be used, they are easily identifiable as a result of wearing Colas branded clothing and they may not be willing for this to be in the public domain.

My reason for contact was as I explained in the first instance, clarification as to whether you had sought their permission. Whilst I appreciate you have not broken any law, obviously I am just ensuring that wherever possible we protect our staff.

Colas Ltd is a UK company.

 

i said take any action you wish but good luck with that basically, now blocked.

They blocked you? I just had a look at the image references you gave earlier. None of the employees is recognisable so the permission thing seems quite spurious.

 

They don't seem to be aware of UK law except stating at one point that they know you're not breaking any law! They just don't want unofficial photos in public it seems - the photos seem pretty mundane to me, not sure why there were so worried about the activities shown.

 

Interesting the little note about it being a UK company. Well... lots of civil engineering consultancies are registered in the UK, but they've actually been bought out and are owned by, and are part of, large American groups - we therefore don't call them British companies anymore,

Edited by Steve F

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2 minutes ago, Steve F said:

They blocked you? I just had a look at the image references you gave earlier. None of the employees is recognisable so the permission thing seems quite spurious.

 

They don't seem to be aware of UK law except stating at one point that they know you're not breaking any law! They just don't want unofficial photos in public it seems - they seemed pretty mundane to me, not sure why there were so worried about the activities shown.

 

Interesting the little note about it being a UK company. Well... lots of civil engineering consultancies are registered in the UK, but they've actually been bought out and are owned by, and are part, of large American groups - we therefore don't call them British companies anymore,

No sorry I should have been clear, I blocked their further communication 

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Posted (edited)

I think the mistake they made was to come in with all guns blazing asking for those images to be taken down from all sites when they had no right to do so, they seemed a lot more conciliatory in their last email.  I think I can understand them wanting to ask their own employees 'at any of our sites' if they wanted to be included in publicity photographs for the company, that seems like a different thing altogether to me, I would have thought employment law might come in there.

 

Easy for me to say but I'd be tempted not to block them unless they try and get heavy again, better to educate them I would have thought.

Edited by Harry Harrison
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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, GaryH said:

No sorry I should have been clear, I blocked their further communication 

The boot's on the other foot- on what planet do you "protect" your employees by forcing them to act as advertising billboards in public?

Staggering to try to put some onus onto you.

Edited by spacecadet

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16 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

The boot's on the other foot- on what planet do you "protect" your employees by forcing them to act as advertising billboards in public?

Staggering to try to put some onus onto you.

I just find the whole thing comical, they had no basis to contact me and no real argument, waste of everyone's time 

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Touching concern for an employee's emotional well-being.

 

;/)

 

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2 hours ago, Steve F said:

They don't seem to be aware of UK law except stating at one point that they know you're not breaking any law! They just don't want unofficial photos in public it seems - the photos seem pretty mundane to me, not sure why there were so worried about the activities shown.

 

Interesting the little note about it being a UK company. Well... lots of civil engineering consultancies are registered in the UK, but they've actually been bought out and are owned by, and are part of, large American groups - we therefore don't call them British companies anymore,

 

Companies house show Bouygues, French based, hold 96.6% of Colas Ltd stock. Perhaps Colas are confusing French privacy laws with UK law? Whatever, they are taking liberties and their demands should be ignored.

 

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