Should I Copyright my Photos?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mac Addiction, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. Mac Addiction macrumors newbie

    Jun 4, 2011
    Hey everyone. I'm thinking of making a photography website, and I was wondering, should I copyright the photos my friend and I are going to post on it? Thank you for replies in advance.
  2. Apple OC macrumors 68040

    Apple OC

    Oct 14, 2010
    if you took the photos ... you already own the copyrights

    watermark them
  3. tpavur macrumors regular

    Sep 8, 2010
    I did not know that, I thought whatever you put out without the right verbiage can be used for another's monetary gain, kind of like writing a book. In court how would you prove the original is yours unless it did have a watermark? If someone buys it from you without the watermark and starts selling it for personal gain how do you go about proving that the photo was originally yours? I know this is way off topic and has the chance of going to deep for this forum so I will do some research on this myself, if anyone has a short answer I appreciate it!
  4. FrankieTDouglas macrumors 65816

    Mar 10, 2005
    Only you would have the original RAW files. If they're trying to prove they own it, they wouldn't be able to provide the original files for proof. Watermarks are incredibly tacky and annoying on images... besides, if you're showing an image on the web, it will be relatively small. 1000 pixels or so. Much too small to do anything useful with it. I accept that some people will download my posted images to their computer, but know they can't do much with it besides make it their desktop wallpaper.
  5. cupcakes2000 macrumors 6502

    Apr 13, 2010
    This is true. In a program like Aperture, you can put a copyright within the exif data as well.
    Copyright maybe the bottom of each page. On your about page, have a little statement along the lines of 'dont copy my photos please'.
    You've gone a long way to make whoever wants to copy your photo aware that it's yours.
    This, plus the exif, plus the original raw on my mac is what I do.
    Watermarks look terrible, are very annoying and aren't really that hard to remove.
    Essentially Apple OC is right, if you took it, it's yours. Copying works has been a problem for years though, and the more you can do then better I guess.
  6. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    Here are more details as to how copyright applies to photography.

    Photography and Copyright

  7. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

    Jun 9, 2009
    Putting a watermark on though, like door locks, deters the casual taker. If they have to go through the effort of editing out a watermark, they will likely just find a different picture.

    A watermark need not be giant, or obtrusive. A small and tastefully done watermark can also help identify or brand your images for others that see them. The watermark can then be used to direct the viewer back to your original site.

    Editing a photo to remove a watermark or copyright information in the EXIF is a violation of the DCMA, and gives you leverage if you find someone has done such.

    Lastly, while you inherently gain copyright privileges to any photo you take when you take them, you cannot prosecute for statutory damages, only actual damages lost by the theft of the picture. In order to prosecute for statutory damages your works must be registered with the copyright office.

    P.S. I am not a lawyer and please verify any statements with an attorney before making any legal decisions :). But these are some additional facts regarding copyright ownership as I understand them.

  8. fireman32 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2010
    Raleigh, NC
    But did you stay at a Holiday Inn express last night ;)
  9. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

    Jun 9, 2009
    Had to look that one up :)

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