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  1. #601
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    hey Danny some legal friends of mine asked me to point out this case:-

    Ludlow Music Inc v. Williams, Chambers, EMI&BMG publishing LTd 2002

    'Although a copyright owner "could charge whatever he wished", in a sense that he was legally entitled to do so, it was arguable that if he sought to exploit the right unreasonably so as to take advantage of the defendant's weak position (albeit one of his own making) his conduct might be regarded as oppressive. In the present case, the claimant had not asked for an "appropriate" payment but arguably had made excessive demands far beyond what it would have been entitled to.'

    The case centred on the 1988 Act. Good old Robbie Williams:-)

    Why would any site not want to be linked to? Isn't that the point?
    unfortunately with copyright laws as i understand it that is irrelevant. Hotlinking is a form of publishing to the public. You really do need their written permission particulary as some of their images could belong to getty anyway. Also there is now a lot of talk about hotlinking images hurting your own serps/PR so from a SEO point of view it may be best to replace them anyway.
    sally

  2. #602
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    Yes that case certainly confirmed that the plaintiffs cannot charge an excessive penalty on top of the normal royalties payable.
    Another case worth looking at is EBay Inc. v. Bidder’s Edge Inc., it was found that use of Web bots to extract data about auctions from an auction site amounted to trespass.

    Have Getty images actually admitted to using Picscout? - Presumably they will deny all knowledge instead relying on the screenshot. In this respect the courts have power to order the disclosure of records such as web-site logs. If the screenshot was dated the 1st Oct then presumably Getty would insist on seeing a log of IP addresses that accessed your site on the 1st Oct. From that they will point to the time and date their IP accessed your site and reconcile it with the screenshot. The log ought to reveal which URL was accessed so subsequently taking down the URL is I assume a wasted exercise particularly where the image had its own URL - as most do. On the other hand the URL and reference to the image in a log is purely in a text format:-)
    So how do they rely on a screenshot? They must have some other form of proof otherwise anyone could argue the screenshot was photoshopped.

    Therefore has anyone any ideas of what proof or means of proof could corroborate the screenshot. the only one I could think of were witness statements however as I assume these would be made by Getty employees they are not going to hold much weight in court as the witness is biased with a clear interest in the Plaintiffs case. Perhaps they could argue there is a software program that verifies the screenshot however like Photoshop anyone can write a code, script or program to produce whatever result they wanted.
    So any ideas?

  3. #603
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    Quote Originally Posted by danny20 View Post
    Have Getty images actually admitted to using Picscout?
    They may not have admitted it but a picscout url is shown on a screenshot page I have seen which came with a Getty letter.

    Sal.

  4. #604
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    Actually I think that we may be a getting a bit unrealistic here. If you want to defend any action to this level then it will cost you a lot of money. Most defence lawyers know about the copyright laws but not about all the stuff that is being discussed here. Wouldn't the cost of employing a lawyer with this degree of involvement be way outside what most of us could afford and much more than what is being claimed by the imaging companies?

  5. #605
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    'Wouldn't the cost of employing a lawyer with this degree of involvement be way outside what most of us could afford and much more than what is being claimed by the imaging companies?'

    That is exactly what they are relying on. Its a prime example of big corporate bullies trampling all over the rights of the little person. There is little doubt that getty are violating tax laws (vat), company laws (the companies regulations 2006), Disability discrimination laws, competition laws, trading standards etc etc.

    these are some of my options:-

    1. settle it. -offer them what you can afford - its unlikely they will accept and bear in mind some have paid and then afterwards faced a fresh round of claims. Therein is the problem of not knowing what they already know.
    [B]2. contest it[/B]
    liability.
    a: denying they have copyright by proving they do not qualify for copyright - possible depending on many factors in particular no one yet knows 'who' they actually are and no one has yet been shown proof of their copyright ownership. Risk of heavy legal fees if you lose.
    b: denying the images were ever published by you. Even more expensive if you lose as all manner of experts are likely to be called (IT experts, picscout software engineers, witnesses of the screenshot) but a point i'm sure a good lawyer is likely to win.
    c. contesting the images are not copyrightable- difficult unless its a simple picture that involved no labour, skill or time. This defence could help the 'shopping cart' type of case but once again i imagine expensive if you lose
    d. Fair use - difficult if you used the images on a commercial site but not impossible.
    e. acquiescence or delay - claim you had the images for years and they had consented to their use verbally - difficult to prove unless you have witnesses
    f incidental inclusion - unlikely to succeed unless they were part of a much larger picture i.e. they fell into the background of a much larger composite picture.
    quantum
    a. claim you believed the images were in the public domain or from a country outside international copyright treaty. If they think you have a good case they will have to pursue an account for profits which in most of cases would be sod all
    b. claim you acquired the images in good faith from a 3rd party. This will stop them winning additional damages and so long as you can show some innocence you can then claim they are only entitled to their own published prices - if beforehand you offerred them this in writing and then pay the equivalent sum into court they will not get costs if their award is less than that sum.
    3. Admit it
    they will take you to court if you cannot afford to pay what they ask for. If you freely admit publishing them without innoncence then they will get additional damages on top of their licnesing fees, and legal costs which in theory should not be as much as denying the claim and losing. same effect as doing absolutley nothing.
    4 incorporate the business
    move all your assets in to a company. This will expose you to bankruptcy as they can and will sue you personally if you were trading as a sole owner at the time the infringement took place.Worse still - bankrupts are disqualified from being company directors - so you lose control of your business
    5 insurance
    claim on your insurance - unlikely and as for taking one out know you have to tell the insurance company whether you have any claims.
    6. sell up and leave the country
    i reckon it will be a at least another 6-12 months before it ever gets to court and more than likley longer than that. so nows the time to put the house,shop,car whatever on the market and say goodbye. This option is only available to those who are lucky enough not to be tied down for whatever reason.
    There are a lot more options such as doing nothing but the problem is the best options as you say require expensive lawyers. For me forming a group of all of us together so that we could share this burden is the best and only solution. United we stand - divided we fall.
    In the meantime we should all hassle the government agencies into prosecuting getty images for their other violations. We should all blog about their unfairness, we should all dig up anything on their licensing team, lobby the stock-brokers in the various markets (i have a few phone numbers). If we all meet then we will all know our current strengths and weaknesses. Who knows what skills we all have. Publicity and demonstrations are other weapons we have not fully exploited. (some of them may be pranks but see how effective fathers of justice were with almost totally closing down the CSA). One thing someone else can do (as i have already done it for something else) is create an e-govt petition against the abuse of copyright laws to profit large companies. http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/
    sally

  6. #606
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    ????????

    the abuse of copyright laws to profit large companies.

    ????? looking through this thread, it has reached a kooky conclusion with that last post. The "large companies", in this case Getty Images, are just made of people, large and small. Besides them, Getty Images is also looking out for the people whose images they represent, professional photographers who hired models, stylists, hair stylists and makeup artists; bought expensive equipment, secured locations; in many cases put a lot of talent, time and effort into taking the picture. They are artists and it's their job, and when their work is used, they deserve compensation.

    Some other options which should have been considered, and/or should be considered in the future, is to take the pictures yourself. (When I say "take", i mean shoot!) That way you can be assured that the copyright is yours. If it's a high-quality image, submit it to an agency like Getty Images. If they accept it, I bet you'd be thinking differently about copyright protection and would expect some royalties when people - even large companies! - use the image.

    Another option, and the easiest, is to license the images fairly. If you have a microbudget, use one of the microstock sites. Don't use one of these "free" stock photos, especially the ones with terms of use that say something to the effect of "we are not legally responsible for the legality of anything on this site"

    Sorry my post doesn't help with your current situation, and I wish you luck in resolving it ---

  7. #607
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    I spoke to a friend of a friend who is a lawyer specialising in Trademarks and Copyright law. I'm afraid his response is not what you want to hear. You'll excuse me for paraphrasing what he said as he went on a bit. It's his favourite subject.

    Its a prime example of big corporate bullies trampling all over the rights of the little person.
    His response:
    If you were using one of their images without their express permission they are within their rights to sue. If you purchased or licensed the image from a 3rd party you are within your rights to subsequently sue them to cover any costs you have to pay to Getty along with additional payments to compensate you for time, expenses, reputation etc.

    There is little doubt that getty are violating tax laws (vat), company laws (the companies regulations 2006), Disability discrimination laws, competition laws, trading standards etc etc.
    His response
    If true this would be dealt with as a separate matter, probably in an entirely different Court.
    SMILE! everyone will wonder what you're up to.
    Site - under construction - again

  8. #608
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    I'm afraid his response is not what you want to hear.
    Why? There's nothing new in this statement.

    If you were using one of their images without their express permission they are within their rights to sue.
    Pretty obvious and already well established.

    If you purchased or licensed the image from a 3rd party you are within your rights to subsequently sue them to cover any costs you have to pay to Getty along with additional payments to compensate you for time, expenses, reputation etc.
    Pretty obvious and already well established.

    If true this would be dealt with as a separate matter, probably in an entirely different Court.
    This is also pretty obvious. It's a totally separate issue and nothing to do with copyright.

  9. #609
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    Danny20, yes Getty are admitting using Picscout. They have a page at
    http://contributors.gettyimages.com/...article_id=889 with the following info...

    (25-Oct-05) Getty Images policy on unauthorized use

    Getty Images considers the subject of copyright protection of the utmost importance and has an active program utilising a range of measures to deal with the issue.

    We are committed to continuing to do all that we can to enforce copyright laws and ensure that both our company and our photographers and filmmakers are compensated for their work.

    Getty Images has established a partnership with PicScout which enhances the monitoring and protection of Getty Images collections on the Internet and in over 2,000 magazines throughout Europe and North America. The Image Tracker™ Service enables Getty Images to monitor who is using their images and locate unauthorized uses.

    The Image Tracker™ Service is the market standard for monitoring visual assets. The service applies some of the most sophisticated crawling and image recognition technology in the world, and is capable of detecting images even if they have been altered or distorted.

    We also employ a legal team who are dedicated to ensuring worldwide copyright compliance. Their sole task is to protect copyright by tracking and pursuing copyright infringements on behalf of the company and our contributors.

    When we find infringements, our experience shows that they are often unintentional. Our policy, therefore, is to turn infringements into licenses, and infringers into customers. The process we use focuses on education, informing the client about what copyright is and where they went wrong. Our aim is to avoid legal action but we will not hesitate to use it when the need arises.

    We welcome and encourage any individual or organisation with information about suspected infringements to contact us and we will deal with it in the strictest of confidence.

    If you have a working relationship with Getty Images, we recommend contacting your Photographer & Filmmaker Services contact.

    Alternatively, and if you do not have a relationship with Getty Images, we recommend contacting:

    US: Mary Walsh, Copyright Compliance Specialist
    mary.walsh@gettyimages.com

    EMEA: Audrey Maslard, Copyright Compliance Specialist
    audrey.maslard@gettyimages.com

  10. #610
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    Interestingly, Getty don't appear to be sticking to their own policy. They say they are keen to avoid legal action and prefer "education" and "conversion of infingers into customers". But waiting 6 months, then hitting infingers with outrageous invoices that can't be afforded clearly demonstrates that they are after completely the opposite.

    If they were after education and conversion they would simply send polite letter pointing out the infringement and asking to pay or decist. A bill of £1,000 for a £50 photo is unlikely to persuade anyone to become a customer of theirs!

  11. #611
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    By the way... on a separate note, I wonder how many people are aware that Fonts are starting to attract similar interest from the companies that sell them. Fonts are copyright protected just like images, and they are just as easy to find on the net! And you need to beware of so-called public domain "free" fonts because they are often copies of commercial fonts under a different name.

  12. #612
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    my remittance slip stated 'getty images international ltd' which i have discovered is an Irish company with a registered office address of Block 4, Braken Business park, Sandyfor Industrial Esatate, Dublin 18 and an Irish company number of 905461.
    By not printing these details on their invoice or correspodence they are violating UK company laws quite seriously, particulary when they print the UK address of 116 Bayham Street, London.
    It also explains why they are charging Irish VAT.
    having established that we are all being chased by effectively an Irish Company this opens all sorts of doors as regards jurisdictional issues and whether they are a body corporate capable of qualifying for copyright protection. It needs some legal research although one key element - when was the image first published - remains missing.

  13. #613
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    i have also just discovered that Getty Images International limited did not effectively come into existance until 8th May 2006 (they registered on 29/03/06). I think this explains why their license fee only relates back to the last 6 months as before that they never existed and arguably could not have held the copyright in the images.
    Is it a possible defence now that you had published the images before May 2006?

  14. #614
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    BTW thank you Slitch for that link. I will use that as a counterclaim for damages for the unauthorised access of my site - although whether the same court will entertain tresspass issues remains to be seen.
    The font warning is noted as indeed a warning to anyone using unlicensed copies of dreamweaver/photoshop as Adobe/macromedia partner getty Images.

  15. #615
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    FINALLY! Resolution on an infringement case...

    Hello Everyone,
    I haven't posted in a couple of weeks, but have been occasionally checking in and following the thread. I must say I'm a bit disappointed in the 'degeneration' of the posts, but it is somewhat understandable as when livelihoods are involved emotions will flare...

    Getting back on track (and contributing a post that will perhaps help others in the same boat) I wanted to present my experience. My thread goes back a few weeks so I'll refresh...

    I received my first letter from Getty in October with the usual verbiage for two thumbnail-sized photos on a second-level page of my site. I got scared because of the size of the fees ($1,000 per image). I don't have that kind of money. My husband recommended ignoring it, so I did.

    I received a second letter, including the same "discount offer" of reduced fees for penalties in November. I had to act, my conscience required it. I'm an ethical, responsible business person and I was, in fact, guilty of using the images in question. I had pulled the images from Getty and used them as placeholders on my local computer while I was redesigning my site, which is enormous. After over a year later I'd forgotten about them and posted everything to my server, where they 'lived' for two years on a deeply-buried, little visited page. I am a regular customer of Getty Images and have given them thousands of dollars in business over the years. This infringement was entirely accidental and unintentional.

    Again, I admit my guilt in using the images. But the fees were outrageous. I read the "Usage" in the Invoices, which was not at all in line with the actual usage I had incurred. SO, I went on to Getty's site, pulled up the images, added them to my shopping cart and purchased the LICENSES for the actual usage and period of use ($240 USD). I forwarded the e-mail receipt from Getty with the licensing certification to the e-mail contact for the infringement letter and included the following statement;

    "
    This is a formal communication regarding Customer Number *******.

    Below you will find a copy of the sales order and invoice for the license purchase of the two images that were being used on the [website], but have since been removed. The "Unauthorized Use" letter sent to me shows the "Usage" of these images being for "Web - Corporate or Promotional Site", of which the site is neither. The licenses purchased for these photos is for "Editorial - Web or Electronic" content, which is a more accurate description of the actual usage of these images.

    The [website] does not, is not, nor has it every been a "Corporate" website, neither owned, financed, or controlled by a Corporation or business. The site is owned and operated by an individual/sole proprietor as a hobby only. Furthermore, the [website] always has, and continues to be, editorial/educational content. The materials which constitute the website were originally researched, authored, and created by [author] without remuneration from anyone (bank, VC, organization, or institution) for the sole purpose of publishing educational material for 9-15 year old students. No products or services are offered for sale through the [website]. It is a content-only site.

    I have paid thousands of dollars of my own money to finance years of web hosting services (and bandwidth overage fines), domain name registration, copyrighting and applying for and successfully obtaining a registered trademark for the site. It is a "black hole" which I continue to pour money into to expand interactivity, new content and creating a community all for the sole purpose of sharing my love of science and inspiring young students to pursue higher education in science and technology. The fees you are asking me to pay for use of these photos are way out of proportion to the actual usage of them.

    I will acknowledge that these images were used without authorization and license from Getty Images and I apologize for this accidental oversight. I accept responsibility for my actions and offer the attached, purchased licenses and use fees as retribution for the offense."

    I also provided a link to the U.S Patent office's online Trademark database to my specific trademark, wherein the type of site is clearly listed, as evidence of my claim of "non-commercial" usage.

    Well, yesterday I received I received the following e-mail from Getty;

    "Thank you for your attention to this matter, we are in receipt of your e-mail dated December 15, 2006. We have reviewed your case and decided not to pursue [website] for the images on your companies website, after reviewing your website we have decided that the images were used for editorial purposes. We thank you for licensing the images for editorial use, as we have contracts with photographers to whom we pay by commission only.

    At this time, Getty Images considers this matter closed. Please be in touch with me if you have further questions or concerns. "

    Problem solved. My conscience is cleared.

    Getty made $240 today, but they just lost potentially thousands of dollars in future business from me and from any clients I do business with, as I will never do business with them again. Had they sent me a cease and desist letter ordering me to remove the images I still would have done so, and I would have blissfully continued being one of their regular customers.

  16. #616
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    hi Shakin Shoes.
    I am pleased that you no longer have the Sword of Damocles over your head.
    I think so long as a site is non-commercial, non-profit and for educational purposes only then there are more defences available including fair use.
    Regrettably some of us here are webmasters of commercial sites however as long as we can show innocent infringement the most the courts are likely to award is Gettys published license fee. Having said that I think Getty is hard pushed to prove copyright in a lot of their images otherwise they would have issued proceedings against one of us by now. I only hope you don't have them pursuing you for more later which is what happened to me.
    Getty Images are deliberately concealing material facts necessary for a successful claim. Aside from the Irish Company issue I wonder how many other facts have been withheld from us.

  17. #617
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    It’s interesting that the potential plaintiffs (Getty images international ltd) only came into existence in 2006. I suspect they acquired all the copyright ownerships from Getty Images Inc - what legal effect that has remains to be seen.
    I have also done some research. Out of interest it seems that most of the photographers for these images are highly unlikely to receive a penny from any damages gitty recover. As long ago as 2001 the photographers were stitched up by gitty as this long thread explains http://groups.google.com/group/bit.l...y+getty+images
    To conclude that thread the The StockArtistsAlliance said joining Getty 'was a bad deal for photographers'.
    Some of the images I have allegedly infringed were part of a TonyStone collection and my enquires suggest they were published over 10 years ago. Isn't there some defence that copyright royalties can be exhausted over time? In some countries that signed up to the Berne agreement copyright of photographs lasts for only 5 years so being told which is the originating country of the image is pretty crucial.
    sally

  18. #618
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    Shakingshoes I have only one problem with this. Why does someone who makes no income from a website buy images from Getty when you can get perfectly adequate alternatives for a 100th of the cost elsewhere?

  19. #619
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    Income sources

    Quote Originally Posted by Booler View Post
    Shakingshoes I have only one problem with this. Why does someone who makes no income from a website buy images from Getty when you can get perfectly adequate alternatives for a 100th of the cost elsewhere?
    The Getty images I used were only on my content site and were inadvertently used without meaning to. As a rule I don't use stock images from any Stock Agency for my editorial content.

    I also own a professional IT consulting business, wherein I design and build websites, web applications, ecommerce site, newsletters, online marketing creative, etc for business customers. That is clearly a commercial endeavor where I earn money producing the design, coding/programming, administering, maintaining, etc. The businesses I provide the service to use their sites for commercial purposes for selling products and services over the Internet. That's my bread and butter.

    I have used Getty images products for producing design work in this capacity. I have always made sure that the images used on my clients' behalf were acquired/used legally with proper permissions and licensing. After thoroughly checking all of my current and past projects I found a single image for which I could no longer find a record of the license (probably because I had purchased it so many years ago on another computer with a dead HD). In my case I am fortunate to still be in contact with all of my customers so I replaced the image with a suitably licensed one, explaining my reasons for doing so. I'm trying to be conscientious and proactive about not only protecting myself, but all of the people I have provided services to so that NO ONE receives a letter like I did.

    I consider myself fortunate to have received this letter myself, before my client with the questionable image did. This gave me ample warning to check all of my previous work and make sure that everything was aboveboard. That image was probably purchased in the name of MY business and not theirs, so Getty images could have found the image on my client's site and found no record of a license for it in the name of that business even though a license had been purchased for that use. That opens a whole new can of worms!

  20. #620
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    I have a question I hope someone may be able to answer:

    If a company is a subsidiary of another, can they claim ownership of the assets of the parent company?

    It seems Corbis Images UK Ltd is a subsidiary of Corbis Images Inc. If the copyright of the images belongs to Corbis Images Inc, I wonder whether Corbis Images UK is entitled to claim payment for something they don't own in the first place.

    All comments appreciated.

    Thanks

  21. #621
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    'If a company is a subsidiary of another, can they claim ownership of the assets of the parent company?'
    A lot depends on the structure of the companies, the way they have structured the company law formalities and in particular the accounts filed at companies House. E.g. are intellectual property rights audited as assets belonging to the subsidiary or the parent company?
    You have to make sure it is in fact a 'subsidiary'
    A parent (holding) company is one which owns a subsidiary company, the latter being defined by the Companies Act 1948 as one, in respect of which another company, which is a member of it, has a right to control the make-up (e.g. its Board of Directors) or holds more than 50% of its issued ordinary share capital
    With copyright the situation is even more complex.
    It is possible to assign copyright ownership between companies but it is unlikely that both of them can own it at the same time for the same period of infringement. Joint ownership in copyright usually arises at the time of creation of the copyrighted material and is unlikely to apply in the case of a photograph i.e. only one person can shoot it! This is a point that is annoying me because I am sure Getty are using throughout the world different companies who all claim ownership for the same image for the same period.
    The Companies Act 1985 requires every oversea company which establishes some type of place of business in Great Britain to deliver certain documents to Companies House. Moreover an oversea company must exhibit where it carries on business in Great Britain the company’s name and the country in which it is incorporated.
    A company which registers a place of business must state on all letter paper, bill heads, invoices and other official publications of the company: Getty have violated this and many other sections of the Act.
    Ok so Getty is committing a criminal offence - so how does this help us?
    'If you do not make your business details available, or you do not display them, you may not be able to enforce a contract that you have entered into.' Similarly a company law solicitor could argue that Getty’s invoice is rendered null and void for those violations. Company law solicitors are not as expensive as copyright solicitors and you can usually find one locally. I think its worthwhile instructing one just to deal with the company law aspect of the case although beforehand it would be useful to look carefully at what names, addresses, company numbers etc are on correspondence/invoices and also do a Full search on Corbis at Companies House. You will need a full set of the accounts for the period in which the infringement took place as the accounts must declare who owned what assets etc.
    The Companies House web-site is a great source of information on the legalities of what companies can and cannot do.
    Sorry I cannot be more helpful at this stage but I have a guy looking at the Getty company angle and I may be able to post more details in a few weeks time.
    Last edited by danny20; Jan 9, 2007 at 11:28. Reason: spelling mistakes

  22. #622
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    BTW in my case 'chloe' of getty images described herself as a 'copyright solicitor'
    Declaring you are a solicitor when you are neither on the roll of solicitors or hold a current practicing certificate is a Criminal offence. The Law Society have advised there are no records of any 'in-house' solicitors working in gettys UK licensing team therefore anyone who speaks to getty on the telephone could you make a note of the full name of the person you are speaking to so that i can contact the law Society to make a complaint about these people. If more than say 3 of us complain the law Society will prosecute.
    I would not normally be so vindictive to suggest a criminal prosecution is forced on the employees of gettys licensing team however since they have been totally vindictive from the start it would be nice to see the boot on the other foot. Also it would seriously discredit any evidence they personally intend to make e.g.. verification of screenshot.

  23. #623
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    Hi Danny.,
    I submitted a formal written request to Getty for information under the Companies Acts 4 weeks ago.
    To date I have heard nothing from them or in response to previous letters.
    The problem is they are making it difficult to prove any communications. They deny conversations, they deny letters, they deny e-mails. Even when you send a recorded/special delivery it only proves they received a package with a letter - not the contents of a letter. Proving you sent an e-mail is possible but proving they received the actual full contents of that e-mail is difficult.
    From experience the best method is by fax - but guesses what? Their licensing team has no fax number.
    For that reason it would be impossible unless you recorded the telephone call to substantiate any allegations of pretending to be a solicitor - so I would be careful on that point Danny otherwise they could sue for malicious prosecution.(even though I too had been given that false impression by them)
    There is little doubt they are behaving in an unethical and deliberately obstructive manner. You cannot negotiate with them unless it is on their terms. Even if you reach a settlement they insist on a bank transfer to some dodgy bank of America account - ?money laundering regulations.
    As for checking their accounts - already tried at Companies House - guess what? They are long ‘overdue’!! Possibly yet another offence.

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    'overdue'
    According to companies House records the accounts of Getty images (uk) ltd are overdue. This means the photographers cannot gain access to check to see how much royalties Getty is actually receiving.
    I have heard their large media client’s access Getty images from a different source. What you see on their web-site is not the up to date, premium images used in the media. Check out all the latest images with media sites that have the Getty logo - you will not find them on Getty’s site.
    Basically Getty’s site is a bin for 'seconds' - images upon which they have earned their targeted royalties. It has inflated prices and is designed in a fashion to mislead the non-savvy public into thinking the images are free and available for download. Those images hit the net and poor suckers like us believing the source from which we got them to be trustworthy, then publish those seconds. A year or two later Getty seek infringement costs at extortionate prices. I think their site is designed purely to generate more revenue from exhausted images. If you could see their accounts I wager that 90% of that web-sites income is derived from chasing so called 'infringers'.10% comes from the misled who think they are buying the latest image. This explains Getty’s reluctance to reveal the true age of the images on their site as none of them were taken with the last 12 months except the 'Film/Hollywood' images which are there to create the illusion that all the images on that site are up to date.
    If you are a photographer posting on this site saying 'I was pleased to get a cheque for $1,200 from Getty last week' - well if you look into their true accounts (which you will probably never see) you will find that the true amount should be nearer $21,000.
    The point for us is that in assessing the real value of the image, Getty are failing to disclose that those images are their 'second' with no or little commercial value left in them.
    sally

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    I have read through this thread with interest.

    I as far as I know I have never visited a Getty site (for sure now I never will). Nor have I got "the dreaded letter" from them .... and if I did would have to claim if I had some of "their" images they must have nabbed them from me originally since my sites have been around intact for over 10 years.

    I do design sites for others now and have paid thousands for images over the years. Some of the disks I have cost several hundred dollars each (none from Getty) ... they better be clear to use for whatever I choose.

    It did occur to me that so far apparently no one has yet been dragged into court over this issue. If that occurs and Getty loses (it is likely they will) it opens the door to a huge class action lawsuit. Big companies make stupid mistakes daily ... it will be interesting to see if Getty is one of those stupid companies ... because dragging someone into court over displaying 5 images (even if it was blatant infringement) is a monumentally stupid business decision.

    To the person who asked what any of us would do if we designed a site and someone nabbed it and converted it to their own and claimed they did it? It has happened to me a couple of times. Soooo what? Life is to short to worry about trivia like that ... I will continue to create new things and someone stealing my work is actually making a compliment of my ability to create something nice. They are welcome to it. Like everyone I post copyrights to my site content ... but I was not born to be an "intellectual property cop" so that is all I do to protect my work.

    Kat


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