Pietrach

Alamy removes street art images.

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I got this email today from Alamy:

 

"As you may be aware we’ve recently seen an increase in the number of complaints we have been receiving from street artists. As part of an ongoing process we are sweeping for images containing street art as this seems to be a hot issue at the moment with the artists chasing copyright infringements of their work. 

Our lawyer has advised us to remove all images of murals that have little to no context, as this could be seen be seen as a copyright or trademark infringement of the original. As a result, we’ve removed the following images from your collection;

 Alamy Ref / Contributor Ref"

 

Below was the list of my images removed.

 

Any thoughts?

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Plenty but we've been through this before. There's no point arguing.

Alamy's game, Alamy's rules. The problem is we don't know when the rules change.

I've lost a few. I just wish Alamy wouldn't pretend they're ptotecting us rather than just themselves- we're not the publisher so we couldn't be the infringer. They also ignore the exceptions in UK law but there's no longer a territory restriction so that's academic now.

Annoying and such a waste of effort as it's impossible to predict what will fall foul of the latest fad for deletion.

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Quote

 

Had the same email, have checked my images and a few are borderline but similar images are available on other agents websites, including the big G so i will just upload images like that elsewhere. No big deal to be honest.

 

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It's a big deal when you put effort into images without knowing whether a later arbitrary sweep will condemn your legitimate images to the bin.

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Just now, spacecadet said:

It's a big deal when you put effort into images without knowing whether a later arbitrary sweep will condemn your legitimate images to the bin.

As you said it's alamy's rules, who knows what may happen in the future?  

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4 minutes ago, Lynchpics said:

 who knows what may happen in the future?  

That's the problem. My latest ones had only been up a couple of weeks and it didn't occur to me that they would fall foul. They're not forbidden by the contract as I see it.

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It's come up before so it was no surprise when i had one this morning. If i go back to the same location

i will have to take it in a different context as per the email.

 

Craig

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1 hour ago, spacecadet said:

It's a big deal when you put effort into images without knowing whether a later arbitrary sweep will condemn your legitimate images to the bin.

 

I totally agree, especially as we are often producing editorial stock images.

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There are quite a lot of street artists who wont be troubled by our photographing their work and putting it up on Alamy or any other site, but there are also some who think we are taking a liberty and are aware of copyright to some extent. Who can blame them? Anyway, it's just lazy to just copy street art. People engaging with the work is more interesting anyway or other ways of establishing context should open the door in some cases. Surely photography should be more than just copying?

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21 minutes ago, Robert M Estall said:

There are quite a lot of street artists who wont be troubled by our photographing their work and putting it up on Alamy or any other site, but there are also some who think we are taking a liberty and are aware of copyright to some extent. Who can blame them? Anyway, it's just lazy to just copy street art. People engaging with the work is more interesting anyway or other ways of establishing context should open the door in some cases. Surely photography should be more than just copying?

A straight copy with nothing other than the artwork in the frame is what they are trying to stop but when you have something else in the frame too i do think they are being overly picky when they say it needs to be deleted. How about other 'art' that's in a public space?  What about a statute, would an image of just a statute with no real indication of it's surroundings be treated in the same way as the street art images that are now being removed on Alamy?

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Posted (edited)

I have one pic set for removal where I have permission from the artist for editorial use - and obviously I have emailed Alamy to say so.

 

One thing I notice is that marking an image as Editorial Only does not prevent it appearing in Creative searches which I had assumed where more aimed at commercial buyers.

Edited by geogphotos

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Posted (edited)

Not sure if this link works as i can not post a screenshot of the webpage to the forum because of my security settings on my website but this image was deleted. For me this image is in context, the tree shows the size of the mural. But as i said we play by their rules etc.

https://john-lynch.pixelrights.com/p/p32IZb

Edited by Lynchpics
added info

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3 minutes ago, GS-Images said:

 

I'd say that was borderline personally. This is one of mine that was accepted...

 

Passacaglia abstract sculpture made of recycled cast iron by Charles Hadcock on Brighton Beach, East Sussex, England, Stock Photo

 

Different from a painting, but the sculpture does take up the whole of the frame. Alamy considered this ok as the context shows it on the beach. I have another sculpture too that's similar in so far as it's the main foreground subject, but you see a background.

 

I know I wouldn't like to be the one to judge what's ok and what isn't.

 

Geoff.

 

I think your image is fine and should not have been even considered for deletion.  As for mine i am cool with them deleting it here, it has been licensed via another agent a number of times so i think i will cope ok. 

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Alamy has been deleting my street art images now for about a year. They are doing it to keep us all from being sued. The artists have contacted them in protest. So I'm cool about it.

 

The irony for me is that I'm pushing toward 5,000 images, and I'm very close, but when I submit a few, Alamy deletes a few.  LOL

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, GS-Images said:

If I had an image printed on a poster and a contributor took a photo of it without showing broader context, I would feel it was a breach of copyright. I personally wouldn't take such a shot at all.

 

 

You would be wrong about that.

I am not "lazy", do not breach anyone's copyright, and don't think it's "fine" to remove my legitimately sourced images.

 

Edited by spacecadet

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Hope they won't delete the images I have of "Kilroy was here" cartoons engraved into a couple of discreet locations on the WWII Memorial in Washington DC. :D

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34 minutes ago, Lynchpics said:

Not sure if this link works as i can not post a screenshot of the webpage to the forum because of my security settings on my website but this image was deleted. For me this image is in context, the tree shows the size of the mural. But as i said we play by their rules etc.

https://john-lynch.pixelrights.com/p/p32IZb

 

The photo also shows a nasty crack in the wall/structure.

 

Allan

 

 

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11 minutes ago, GS-Images said:

 

Thanks, but just to clarity, Alamy didn't consider it for deletion. It was after a blog post or forum thread on the subject a few months ago, and I wasn't sure where I stood with images like this. So I picked out a few to ask if they were ok.

 

Cheers,

Geoff.

 

There is an exception in UK copyright law for images of scupltures, buildings and works of artistic craftsmanship. They don't breach copyright.

Alamy appears to be taking a very narrow interpretation to include two-dimensional works of art, exclude the exception for works of artistic craftsmanship and  a minimalist view of the "substantial part" test.

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37 minutes ago, Lynchpics said:

Not sure if this link works as i can not post a screenshot of the webpage to the forum because of my security settings on my website but this image was deleted. For me this image is in context, the tree shows the size of the mural. But as i said we play by their rules etc.

https://john-lynch.pixelrights.com/p/p32IZb

In context IMO.

We are missing the point in that Alamy is not "helping" us. We are not the publishers and so do not infringe. Alamy is covering itself.

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1 minute ago, GS-Images said:

 If it's a straight-on view of the poster, with no border, that's no different from lifting it from a website and posting it as your own. So what IS acceptable?

That might be an infringement if the photographer were the publisher. But I don't do that anyway. The ones Alamy removed all included context- wall, frame, street furniture, perspective, whatever.

Alamy's policy goes far beyond the law which is why it's a bit rich to say they're protecting us.

Just have a look at the CDPA.  The law says copyignt a "substantial part " is an infringement so including the frame might exclude it. Most Berne Convention copyright laws are much the same apart from the US which has far more exceptions.

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there is a big difference between 2 dimensional art and three dimensional art. Basically, every time a photographer makes a photograph of a sculpture or bit of ceramic like a jug, they create a new copyright, a bit of context, even better but not essential. Flat art, be it in a street or a gallery, context is necessary, and the more the better. If the street art community is giving an agency grief, I can't really argue with the "quiet life" reaction. 

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This was on BBC Radio 4 'Law in Action' programme yesterday. The crucial legal points seem to be that the artists had permission, their work was recognised as art, they did everything correctly. The landowner has been hit with a huge financial penalty for knocking down his own property and destroying these artworks.

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0608m95

 

I00000SuEPlSjzBQ.jpg

 

HowHow a group of graffiti artists won $6.75 million in damages after their art was destroyedHow a group of graffiti artists won $6.75 million in damages after their art was destroyed

The 5 Pointz building in New York was a shrine to graffiti art, attracting some of the most renowned aerosol artists from around the world who would visit to create intricate murals on its walls. 

The building was a disused factory and for over a decade artists painted there with the permission of its owner. Then in 2013 the owner decided he wanted to develop the site - a decision which ultimately led to the destruction of much of the art in the space. 

However, while the building owner had the legal right to develop his property, the artwork which adorned its walls was protected under a federal law known as the Visual Artists Rights Act. 

Law in Action presenter Joshua Rozenberg speaks to the artist Meres One and lawyer Eric Baum about the recent court case which saw a group of 21 artists awarded a total of $6.75 million in damages following the destruction of their art at 5 Pointz.

a group of graffiti artists won $6.75 million in damages after their art was destroyed

The 5 Pointz building in New York was a shrine to graffiti art, attracting some of the most renowned aerosol artists from around the world who would visit to create intricate murals on its walls. 

The building was a disused factory and for over a decade artists painted there with the permission of its owner. Then in 2013 the owner decided he wanted to develop the site - a decision which ultimately led to the destruction of much of the art in the space. 

However, while the building owner had the legal right to develop his property, the artwork which adorned its walls was protected under a federal law known as the Visual Artists Rights Act. 

Law in Action presenter Joshua Rozenberg speaks to the artist Meres One and lawyer Eric Baum about the recent court case which saw a group of 21 artists awarded a total of $6.75 million in damages following the destruction of their art at 5 Pointz.

[PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES An artist makes a new creation in front of New York's iconic graffiti spot 5 Pointz]

a group of graffiti artists won $6.75 million in damages after their art was destroyed

The 5 Pointz building in New York was a shrine to graffiti art, attracting some of the most renowned aerosol artists from around the world who would visit to create intricate murals on its walls. 

The building was a disused factory and for over a decade artists painted there with the permission of its owner. Then in 2013 the owner decided he wanted to develop the site - a decision which ultimately led to the destruction of much of the art in the space. 

However, while the building owner had the legal right to develop his property, the artwork which adorned its walls was protected under a federal law known as the Visual Artists Rights Act. 

Law in Action presenter Joshua Rozenberg speaks to the artist Meres One and lawyer Eric Baum about the recent court case which saw a group of 21 artists awarded a total of $6.75 million in damages following the destruction of their art at 5 Pointz.

[PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES An artist makes a new creation in front of New York's iconic graffiti spot 5 Pointz]

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Looks like it was an interesting building. Some nice images on Alamy 

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Posted (edited)

Sometimes there's a fine line between street art and advertising. This one was created to mark CBGBs, which no longer exists, and promote Blondie's new album “Polinator.”  It was marked "Editorial Use Only, and was not available for Personal Use or Prints. Personally I feel there's plenty of context and it goes far beyond being a "copy" of the work

 

.K0TTK7.jpg

Edited by fotoDogue

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19 hours ago, fotoDogue said:

 there's plenty of context and it goes far beyond being a "copy" of the work

 

.K0TTK7.jpg

That's why it's still up!

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