There’s a new form of extortion – copyright extortion. Copyright laws are being exploited by the greedy and the less-than-honorable. So far, every case I’ve looked at since yesterday has been instigated by a left-winger. It’s legal, it’s lucrative for the perpetrator, and it’s unethical . If you take an image from someone without permission who owns it , even if it’s a mistake, they can demand you pay any amount of money to avoid being sued.
If you use an image on google, or anywhere from the Internet presumably, no matter how jejune, you could end up owing hundreds or even thousands to the owner. Most owners will ask that you give them attribution or that you take it down, but there those who see an opportunity to make a buck or harm a right-winger.
It happened to me with a photographer who works for such organizations as the hate group Southern Poverty Law Center among others. Need I say more?
Photographers deserve to be paid for their photos but this man decided hundreds of dollars was the amount he needed immediately for a blah photo or I’d face a lawsuit. I was in the hospital, having had an unsuccessful back surgery and I was in great pain but he could have cared less and gave me only that one day to take his “deal”.
Great humanitarian liberal that he is, he didn’t say we could discuss it when I’m better. He didn’t care that I run the website at a loss and only put the work in to provide information and support for those who have been bullied and marginalized by the left and the administration.
When I tried to negotiate for a lower amount, I got a nasty email back from his fake legal team.
The fascist demanded no further comments be made and he called me a liar.
Funny thing, at the end of his email, he wrote, “Be well”. Was that to make him feel all good about himself?
The price for the mundane photo – it was very commonplace – was extortion and he was threatening, plain and simple.
I thought it was fair use. Certainly I wasn’t making money on it and it was being used for educational purposes.
I got it from a website where no copyright was listed but he told me all photos on google are copyrighted. I’m not sure that is true but I will treat it that way.
I made a mistake. I usually get our photos from paid sources or from our own friends on the right who travel everywhere with their cameras. It was a dime-a-dozen photo, who would have thought?
I had an experience with a leftist before. I asked a photographer if I could use one of his photos to compare New York City under Guiliani and Bloomberg to today’s New York City – it’s going downhill. The response I got from him was so disgusting and so vile that I felt like I was raped. That feeling sticks with me today.
I have been researching copyright laws and have found that it’s legalized extortion and it allows them to get your personal information so they can hound you.
One person warning potential victims on the Internet said that he ended up paying $10,000 because he didn’t accept the original settlement of $500. Other unscrupulous copyright hounds troll the Internet to catch people and bilk them.
It’s a nasty business and it’s being exploited by some unethical people. Bloggers beware!
Here are some more resources for those interested:
Responding to Getty Images Demand Letter [Getty wasn’t the photographer who overcharged me, it was a nobody]