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Photoshelter users be warned. They have introduced Lattice, a Pinterest type "service" with no watermark protection. It took me barely 2 minutes to grab an unwatermarked 1200 x 800 px image. It is yet another opportunity for image theft.

 

You are opted in by default. If you use PhotoShelter and value you your images I suggest you login immediately and opt out. You might also want to share your view  on their Blog. I am now taking a hard look at whether I am going to continue using PhotoShelter to store my images as they clearly are not thinking in terms of protecting professional photographers. I will probably cancel my account as soon as I can download my images (although I do have them on my own machines) and rebuild my web site. I was going to redesign it anyway this just moves it to the top of the list.

Edited by Martin P Wilson
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They don't make hugely obvious where to opt out, either.  It's here: Under My account > Account Info > General Information, click Edit Info.  Uncheck the last of 5 checkboxes (Include images in Lattice).  It will then flash up a warning that the world will end if you decide to opt out.  I'm still here... <_<

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I left Photoshelter in 2008.

I was very shocked to find 4 of my images on one of their 'test' databases. Flippant explanation.

 

Glad I left them....I use Zenfolio for one site,Smugmug for my other.Unlimited storage for a fraction of what I paid at Photoshelter.

Did not care for the service or the way they handled their quickly fallen 'photo agency.' Also,watch when they are 'beta testing' something.

My assistant and I were working on our site back in 2007 or so and they changed something which made our images vanish.They'd been deleted without asking confirming 'delete.'

This was for appx 45,000 images at the time and we contacted them immediately.

I had to pay hundreds  of dollars for a partial restore;some were lost.

I guess so much for their bullet proof back-up?

 

I had a lot of images stolen from Photoshelter that I'm still chasing down years later.

 

L

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Long story short, today I opted out of Lattice and emailed feedback that It has potential, but photoshelter needs to add an option for some sort of meaningful watermark, to balance user experience and image security. (Otherwise, Lattice will be yet another convenient place to screenshot, grab lovely unwatermarked images.)

 

I also wrote that default for such changes should be Opt In, not Opt Out.

 

Looking forward to their response.

 

[edited to add: I have now also followed fotoDogue's excellent suggestion below]

Edited by ann
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While I'm not suggesting that Lattice shouldn't be discussed here, I think it would make more sense for those who have concerns or objections to post them on the PhotoShelter Forum, where we can get some definitive answers. If enough photographers object to the lack of watermarks perhaps PhotoShelter will include them.

 

fD

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I left Photoshelter in 2008.

I was very shocked to find 4 of my images on one of their 'test' databases. Flippant explanation.

 

Glad I left them....I use Zenfolio for one site,Smugmug for my other.Unlimited storage for a fraction of what I paid at Photoshelter.

Did not care for the service or the way they handled their quickly fallen 'photo agency.' Also,watch when they are 'beta testing' something.

My assistant and I were working on our site back in 2007 or so and they changed something which made our images vanish.They'd been deleted without asking confirming 'delete.'

This was for appx 45,000 images at the time and we contacted them immediately.

I had to pay hundreds  of dollars for a partial restore;some were lost.

I guess so much for their bullet proof back-up?

 

I had a lot of images stolen from Photoshelter that I'm still chasing down years later.

 

L

 

Yes, I was amazed when people started dealing with PS after that, Linda and Regen. I'm Irish, but when it comes to forgive and forget, I'm a 100% Sicilian. 

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I do however get a bit fed up with initiatives like Lattice plus the webinars that I used to latch on to but cannot be bothered to watch any more, so evangelical are they.

 

But actually, I still value my Photoshelter presence - having migrated from the awful Digital Railroad that finally imploded after huge overspending. I've put a huge amount of time creating and curating my own galleries to the point where I'd be very reluctant to leave for pastures new. And as a shop window, I also think it's money well-spent.

 

 

Richard.

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I wasn't unhappy to see the PS stock agency close. Their image editors seemed to have little knowledge of stock photography markets. Only images that they considered "awesome" or "amazing" -- rather than ones that might actually lease -- made the grade. I just stick with the basic PS account and don't bother with webinars, etc. Coincidentally, it looks as if I may have made an editorial sale through my PS site today. First one in a long time, though.

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In the 'Introducing Lattice...' thread on PS, administrator's post mentions watermarks:

"...Lots of great feature suggestions in this forum, including the discussion of ways to drive more board activity and of course the discussion of watermarks. I'll stress once again that this is a phased rollout, and all of your feedback will be taken into consideration. Lots more to come.... "

 

They need to better understand members' business needs and promptly heed watermark concerns, especially since Lattice default is Opt In.

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In the 'Introducing Lattice...' thread on PS, administrator's post mentions watermarks:

"...Lots of great feature suggestions in this forum, including the discussion of ways to drive more board activity and of course the discussion of watermarks. I'll stress once again that this is a phased rollout, and all of your feedback will be taken into consideration. Lots more to come.... "

 

They need to better understand members' business needs and promptly heed watermark concerns, especially since Lattice default is Opt In.

 

Yes, I saw that Ann. My interpretation of it is, "We acknowledge that forum members are discussing watermarks".

 

I'm not sure whether "...some annoying..." comes before "forum members" but I suspect it does.

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Watermarks are addressed on the FAQ page accessed from the Lattice homepage.

 

I got an email two days ahead of launch that said opt-out was the default setting. Maybe others got a different message.

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Watermarks are addressed on the FAQ page accessed from the Lattice homepage.

 

I got an email two days ahead of launch that said opt-out was the default setting. Maybe others got a different message.

 

Well I was clearly opted in by default - I went straight to my account as soon as the email was received. If they have not added watermarks then as Linda says they need to wake up to members' business needs.

Edited by Martin P Wilson
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Now I'm guessing that I got a different message because one of my photos was added to a board before launch. Maybe they needed an active "opt-in" from me before launch. If Lattice increases the online visibility of my PhotoShelter library, I'll stay. If theft is rampant, I'll opt-out. Several of my images have gotten added to boards and are getting seen. Seen by buyers? I don't know, but time will tell. It's good that the OP posted this 'heads-up' here, but I'll be following the discussion at the PhotoShelter forum more closely than here.   

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Now I'm guessing that I got a different message because one of my photos was added to a board before launch. Maybe they needed an active "opt-in" from me before launch. If Lattice increases the online visibility of my PhotoShelter library, I'll stay. If theft is rampant, I'll opt-out. Several of my images have gotten added to boards and are getting seen. Seen by buyers? I don't know, but time will tell. It's good that the OP posted this 'heads-up' here, but I'll be following the discussion at the PhotoShelter forum more closely than here.   

 

I don't tune into the PS forums much, but I just took a peek and was surprised at how little discussion is going on about Lattice. A few people are complaining about the lack of watermarking and the opt-in/out confusion, pretty much the same as here. I haven't really taken the time to understand what Lattice is all about, but I doubt that photo researchers and publishers have time to look at boards. These types of setups always seem to be aimed at photo-sharing (and inevitable photo-theft, of course) rather than legitimate marketing. But I guess you never know...

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From ps customer support response to my email:
"....very excited about some developments we're exploring in the image security front, which we hope will provide protection much more powerful than watermarking (and will not obfuscate your images in the process)...."

As I understand it, Lattice will also involve increased visibility in search engines, so I hope they do adequately address image security, including screenshots, since I'd like to opt back in. (If it doesn't involve increased search engine visibility, then it's a waste of of my time, so Lattice alone.)

Edited by ann
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Now I'm guessing that I got a different message because one of my photos was added to a board before launch. Maybe they needed an active "opt-in" from me before launch. If Lattice increases the online visibility of my PhotoShelter library, I'll stay. If theft is rampant, I'll opt-out. Several of my images have gotten added to boards and are getting seen. Seen by buyers? I don't know, but time will tell. It's good that the OP posted this 'heads-up' here, but I'll be following the discussion at the PhotoShelter forum more closely than here.   

 

I don't tune into the PS forums much, but I just took a peek and was surprised at how little discussion is going on about Lattice. A few people are complaining about the lack of watermarking and the opt-in/out confusion, pretty much the same as here. I haven't really taken the time to understand what Lattice is all about, but I doubt that photo researchers and publishers have time to look at boards. These types of setups always seem to be aimed at photo-sharing (and inevitable photo-theft, of course) rather than legitimate marketing. But I guess you never know...

 

 

John, I totally agree. Many of the change since the demise of the photo library venture have increasingly felt like social media, not a place for professional phoptographers. I was thinking that I would need to review my involvment next year when I reengineer my website, both are now on my immediate agenda.

 

This confirms my point above and is  probably another nail in the coffin in my relationship with PS ...

Edited by Martin P Wilson
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