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No trust here, awaiting closing of my account. 7.1 looks problematic, but I’m no lawyer.

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Posted (edited)

I've not yet done a full comparison with the original contract, but I have noted that some of the things being complained about in this thread already appeared to be in the original contract.

I will be ignoring the now discarded changes from the recent proposed contract and will be comparing the finalised version with the original contract.

Edited by Steve F
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13 minutes ago, John Morrison said:

Though I won’t be terminating my contract, my enthusiasm for stock has taken a hit. I doubt if I’ll be organising many more trips with the sole purpose of shooting stock. I’ll just upload enough pix to keep my port ‘ticking over’.

 

The transfer of the business to PA would have been a good moment to confirm that the marketing of stock imagery is a collaborative venture. We could have heard about new initiatives to promote the collection, which would enrich both Alamy and the contributors. We could have been enthused! Instead, the handover has been marked by animosity and disappointment, as contributors are left in no doubt where they stand in the ‘pecking order’…

This is pretty much where I'm at just now, plus I may look at deleting some images and restricting others. I've already started to look at distribution and unticked those who have been persistent low $ fees.

It's a further step on the road to killing the stock industry and I'll be surprised if Alamy and the other large general agencies are still in business in 10 years time...

Phil

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For those of us that dont have great legal minds and have read through the msg boards but are still a little confused. Any chance Alamy could post something in laymen's terms.

Thanks 

Cheers and gone

 

Shergar.

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3 hours ago, ManfredG said:

I can talk only about Germany.
There are certain rules whether you may publish images with people without release. In most cases it does not matter if used "editorial" or "commercial" !! Even uploading to any website is a violation of law. This has always been so in Germany and much more now due to the GDPR in the EU.

Please inform about the laws in countries you take photos !! Otherwise you will get troubles sooner or later.

Hitherto we had assumed that the liability was with the publisher- I have had numerous images with identifiable people taken and published in Germany. Those publishers have assumed the risk. My understanding in Germany is that right of publicity only applies if there is an expectation of privacy.

The GDPR has limited relevance as photographs are only sensitive personal data if taken for the purpose of identifying a person, which wouldn't apply to our images.

I was once challenged merely for taking a photograph in Stuttgart that I had "kein recht". I know that is not the case.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

Hitherto we had assumed that the liability was with the publisher- I have had numerous images with identifiable people taken and published in Germany. Those publishers have assumed the risk. My understanding in Germany is that right of publicity only applies if there is an expectation of privacy.

The GDPR has limited relevance as photographs are only sensitive personal data if taken for the purpose of identifying a person, which wouldn't apply to our images.

I was once challenged merely for taking a photograph in Stuttgart that I had "kein recht". I know that is not the case.

Problem is law changes now and then, freedom of panorama with restriction to non commercial usage was only introduced in 2016 in France.

And then, what is commercial usage exactly?

Edited by CarloBo
grammar
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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, spacecadet said:

The GDPR has limited relevance as photographs are only sensitive personal data if taken for the purpose of identifying a person, which wouldn't apply to our images.

 

Believe me, I live in Germany and have followed all the GDPR discussions very carefully. I fear you did not understand that correctly. - But do what you like to do. 😉

Edited by ManfredG
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I don't see myself having more than a year or two left for producing stock images. I'm certainly not looking to start all over again. I'll be staying with Alamy . . . and I'm off to Chester in the morning to snap the zoo animals and the Roman wall. 

 

Good luck to all, regardless of your new path.

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41 minutes ago, Shergar said:

For those of us that dont have great legal minds and have read through the msg boards but are still a little confused. Any chance Alamy could post something in laymen's terms.

Thanks 

Cheers and gone

 

Shergar.

+1 @alamy

 

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41 minutes ago, Shergar said:

For those of us that dont have great legal minds and have read through the msg boards but are still a little confused. Any chance Alamy could post something in laymen's terms.

Thanks 

Cheers and gone

 

Shergar.

 

I feel the same way. The fact is, though, that layman's terms (i.e. plain English) and legalese are two different languages and probably always will be.

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3 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

I feel the same way. The fact is, though, that layman's terms (i.e. plain English) and legalese are two different languages and probably always will be.

My first take on this is that if you mark everything correctly, you're off the hook. So I'm taking the conservative approach. I've marked my entire port as "editorial only" and I've marked everything as containing property, with no release. I'm deleting all pictures off art, sculpture, trademarked items that are not in "context" (part of a much larger scene). I've also marked everything non-exclusive and will decide what other agencies are appropriate for some images that don't sell at microstock prices.

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9 minutes ago, formerly snappyoncalifornia said:

 I've also marked everything non-exclusive and will decide what other agencies are appropriate for some images that don't sell at microstock prices.

Thing is most other agencies that pay 50/50 and get good prices want RM and exclusive...

Phil

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36 minutes ago, ManfredG said:

Believe me, I live in Germany and have followed all the GDPR discussions very carefully. I fear you did not understand that correctly. - But do what you like to do. 😉

I am referring to the UK data protection act. Since the contract would be brought before an English court that is what is relevant. An English court would not enforce right of personality.

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OK, so some contract changes were amended about as expected, and I've received an email (as someone who had already sent a termination email) inviting me to un-terminate if I so desire. What to do? 

 

I'll say this again:  If Alamy wants individual contributors to stay, they need to allow contributors a period when they can immediately delete images that may be problematic, based on the contributor's current understanding of liability. It doesn't matter if the liability language has been in the contract forever. What matters is the contributor's current understanding of liability, and a desire to get rid of images that may be deemed problematic.

 

I'm not sure what to do about re-licensing of previously sold images; I presume this would be governed by the original licensing terms.

 

Allowing a clean-up period could also enable contributors to get rid of deadwood images and tighten up their portfolios.

 

Side note: I see that the current (2019) contract says we can delete images with 180 days notice; in the new contract, it's 90 days (clause 2.4 in both cases). My non-lawyer assumption is that this is an Alamy rule that they could waive.

 

I doubt that I'll be taking back my termination (all this has enabled me to "get over" stock photography, at least at Alamy). But if I were to come back into the fold, it would only be if I were able to delete images as I saw fit before July 24, the new contract date.

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19 minutes ago, Phil Crean said:

Thing is most other agencies that pay 50/50 and get good prices want RM and exclusive...

Phil

 

There's always that big one on the Iberian Peninsula, but...

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2 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

There's always that big one on the Iberian Peninsula, but...

but..... 😬

 

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31 minutes ago, formerly snappyoncalifornia said:

My first take on this is that if you mark everything correctly, you're off the hook. So I'm taking the conservative approach. I've marked my entire port as "editorial only" and I've marked everything as containing property, with no release. I'm deleting all pictures off art, sculpture, trademarked items that are not in "context" (part of a much larger scene). I've also marked everything non-exclusive and will decide what other agencies are appropriate for some images that don't sell at microstock prices.

 

That sounds like a wise plan. I'm not ready to go quite as far yet, but I'm slowly making changes. I still feel like I'm stabbing around in the dark, though. A few quick searches of the massive Alamy collection suggests that there are thousands of contributors who will never read the contract or tune into the forum. Consequently they won't make any changes at all. It seems to me that Alamy has a mega-mess on its hands.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, John Mitchell said:

 

I feel the same way. The fact is, though, that layman's terms (i.e. plain English) and legalese are two different languages and probably always will be.

I know I have posted this before and its from 1998 (I think) but it was very useful  then and something like it now would be very helpful now.

 

 

If you're licensing your images as RF then we recommend you do tick the 'sell for editorial only box' but as you are licensing the images as RM then you don’t necessarily need to have these restrictions.

This will however open up the option to customers to purchase commercial licenses but as long as you have annotated the images correctly by saying they contain unreleased people and/or property then customers are notified with the following; “If you want to use the image commercially, you might also need permission from the model, artist, owner, estate, trademark or brand”. This puts the onus on them to ensure that should they wish to use an image commercially, they will need to seek releases themselves.

We've written a blog that might help: http://bit.ly/2UdRb75

 

I then further queried why RM and RF images were treated differently as far as the editorial only tick box is concerned. The reply was thus...

 

With RM, the customer has to declare details of the use before a license is issued i.e. what the use is, what size they need, how long the image will be used for etc. With RF the customer simply has to pick a size they want, and they can use that however, wherever and whenever.

 

Both license types can be used for editorial or commercial, but RF is often more associated with commercial as they are usually released images, and the customer doesn’t have to declare all the details of the use. This is why we have always advised that images that contain unreleased people and property should be RM, as this reduces the risk of the image being used commercially. When we introduced RF-Editorial, you could have annotated the unreleased images as RM or RF-Ed.

 

So long as you have annotated that the image contains people/property, and that there are no releases, the onus will be on the customer to clear the image for commercial use if that was what they wanted to use it for.

 

We don’t want to encourage or discourage you from restricting your images, but as I mentioned above, the most important thing is that they are annotated correctly. We have found that customers sometimes get scared off by restricted images, which is why we have sent emails to contributors with restricted images, as there may be restrictions that have been added unnecessarily.

 

In summary, just make sure that your images are correctly annotated, and if they are unreleased, they should be RM or RF-Ed

 

https://discussion.alamy.com/topic/13135-editorial-box-should-it-be-checked/?do=findComment&comment=252441

Edited by Shergar
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Posted (edited)
24 minutes ago, Shergar said:

I know I have posted this before and its from 1998 (I think) but it was very useful  then and something like it now would be very helpful now.

 

 

If you're licensing your images as RF then we recommend you do tick the 'sell for editorial only box' but as you are licensing the images as RM then you don’t necessarily need to have these restrictions.

This will however open up the option to customers to purchase commercial licenses but as long as you have annotated the images correctly by saying they contain unreleased people and/or property then customers are notified with the following; “If you want to use the image commercially, you might also need permission from the model, artist, owner, estate, trademark or brand”. This puts the onus on them to ensure that should they wish to use an image commercially, they will need to seek releases themselves.

We've written a blog that might help: http://bit.ly/2UdRb75

 

I then further queried why RM and RF images were treated differently as far as the editorial only tick box is concerned. The reply was thus...

 

With RM, the customer has to declare details of the use before a license is issued i.e. what the use is, what size they need, how long the image will be used for etc. With RF the customer simply has to pick a size they want, and they can use that however, wherever and whenever.

 

Both license types can be used for editorial or commercial, but RF is often more associated with commercial as they are usually released images, and the customer doesn’t have to declare all the details of the use. This is why we have always advised that images that contain unreleased people and property should be RM, as this reduces the risk of the image being used commercially. When we introduced RF-Editorial, you could have annotated the unreleased images as RM or RF-Ed.

 

So long as you have annotated that the image contains people/property, and that there are no releases, the onus will be on the customer to clear the image for commercial use if that was what they wanted to use it for.

 

We don’t want to encourage or discourage you from restricting your images, but as I mentioned above, the most important thing is that they are annotated correctly. We have found that customers sometimes get scared off by restricted images, which is why we have sent emails to contributors with restricted images, as there may be restrictions that have been added unnecessarily.

 

In summary, just make sure that your images are correctly annotated, and if they are unreleased, they should be RM or RF-Ed

 

 

Thanks for the reminders. I remember reading both of those, and they actually make sense (no legalese double-talk).

Edited by John Mitchell
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43 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

That sounds like a wise plan. I'm not ready to go quite as far yet, but I'm slowly making changes. I still feel like I'm stabbing around in the dark, though. A few quick searches of the massive Alamy collection suggests that there are thousands of contributors who will never read the contract or tune into the forum. Consequently they won't make any changes at all. It seems to me that Alamy has a mega-mess on its hands.

I suspect when that $3.00 sale comes in showing a .60 cent commission they will have a coffee spew WTF??? moment.

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2 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

Thanks for the reminders. I remember reading both of those, and they actually make sense (no legalese double-talk). It sounds as if the prudent thing to do (still) is to mark all images with people -- recognizable or unrecognizable -- in them as editorial use only. Determining what is "property" is often more problematic as the term is difficult to define. As far as RF images go, I don't see that "pure" RF ones -- e-g. nature images -- need to be marked as editorial (RF-Ed). Also, microstock agencies don't usually consider crowds of people and cityscapes as editorial (i.e. in need of releases for commercial), if that means anything.

OldAlamy was very strict about what they considered a person or a property, so I've marked tiny clusters out-of-focus pixels, and buildings centuries out of the architect's copyright as 'needs release, no release' in the past, and now I've gone through and additionally marked them as editorial-only (all RM). Oddly, I remember them once saying a reflection didn't count as needing a release, which was very surprising to me, but I think that was in the old forum, and I wouldn't be able to find it now. That was as odd as the example someone mentioned in the last couple of pages of this thread which deemed 'exclusive' a street-scene file which was about two steps down the road from a comparison image.

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1 hour ago, ManfredG said:

Believe me, I live in Germany and have followed all the GDPR discussions very carefully. I fear you did not understand that correctly. - But do what you like to do. 😉

 

I'm inclined to believe you. In Clause 4.1.15 we warrant that: the Content complies with the privacy and property laws of the country in which it was taken, e.g. in certain countries before taking a photo of someone you are required by law to ask the subject’s permission. 

 

I think this would override anything if a publisher was legally challenged in Germany. I don't think is specifically about the GDPR in English law as photos are not considered as data in themselves. This is about privacy laws in specific countries. If Alamy gets egg on its face in Germany (and they have an office there as well as a contract in German for buyers) then it may ultimately come back to the contributor. I assume that German publishers would be well aware of the legalities but how easy is it for something too slip through the net. There are similar laws in Spain and other European countries.

 

Ultimately it comes down to the question: is it worth the hassle for the money involved taking a chance with anything?

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, Cryptoprocta said:

OldAlamy was very strict about what they considered a person or a property, so I've marked tiny clusters out-of-focus pixels, and buildings centuries out of the architect's copyright as 'needs release, no release' in the past, and now I've gone through and additionally marked them as editorial-only (all RM). Oddly, I remember them once saying a reflection didn't count as needing a release, which was very surprising to me, but I think that was in the old forum, and I wouldn't be able to find it now. That was as odd as the example someone mentioned in the last couple of pages of this thread which deemed 'exclusive' a street-scene file which was about two steps down the road from a comparison image.

 

Alamy really does need to give us a 2021 update on all of this, especially in light of the contract changes. Restricting every image with people -- recognizable or unrecognizable --  or anything that even hints of "property" in them as "editorial use only" seems like overkill to me, but I'll certainly do it if necessary for added legal protection. 

 

 

Edited by John Mitchell
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Posted (edited)

More than anything it is the sheer apparent idiocy of these contract changes. Only about 6.6% of images are exclusive.

 

Alamy says that the exclusive images have no commercial value over the non-exclusive. In other words there is no implicit reason why they should outsell the other 93.4% of images which are already at 40%.

 

So why alienate those most loyal and engaged suppliers? The extra 10% can't be costing them all that much. Or gaining them that much compared with what they are throwing away in terms of trust, deleted accounts, loss of interest etc

 

Really, what is the purpose?

 

Honestly, thinking  about it, I can't come up with anything more than the new MD wanting to demonstrate her ability to achieve something that the former CEO failed to do. 

 

And as they say in Dragon's Den, for that reason I'm not investing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by geogphotos
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