This is another post I really battled posting, but it just pushed way too many buttons for me not to say something. I figured this was the best place to do so. This can definitely be filed under the “Don’t Be An Asshole” category.
Anyone that follows me knows I take a whole lot of photos. So, when I see photos, I’m interested. I love seeing other people’s work and how they view the world. The problem is that way too may people see a photo and feel like it is free game. Save it, share it, repost it, use it in whatever way they want. The problem with that? Unless you are the photographer or you have permission from the photographer to use it, THAT. IS. THEFT!
There have been two separate instances recently that have jammed up hard on my personal peeve button on this issue and they both pissed me off. One was a personal thing that, for me, was more about just basic common courtesy that states you should at least acknowledge that an image isn’t your own. It was an image I shared with a group with the intent that others would use for personal reasons alone, but someone ended up saving that image and reposting it without any kind of acknowledgement at all of where it came from. Sorry, but that is absolute rudeness. I could be nasty about it, but I won’t because it defeats the reasons I shared the image in the first place.
The second doesn’t directly impact me or my art in any way, but still makes me angry because it perpetuates the idea that you can just take something if you want it because you see it on the internet. It was a publication (I won’t go into specifics for my own reasons) that used images that were not cited as to who the photographer(s) was. Now, the person that produced that publication could have been the photographer, but nowhere in any bio info that I was able to find mentioned photography as a skill, hobby or profession. I have zero proof those images were stolen, but the lack of citation makes that seriously questionable. Sure, they may have had permission to use them, but again… no citation. I cannot imagine that a single photographer would ever consent to their images being used without them being credited.
Art, of any kind, takes time, effort, skill, ideas, materials and experience. Those that produce it deserve to get credit for that. They deserve to get paid for that if they do so for money. Digital forms of art are constantly being taken because too many people think that just because something was posted on the internet, it is suddenly free. In the above case, if the person that produced that publication had someone copy that publication and republish it under their name, they’d be screaming copyright violation and theft. Images and photos are the frickin’ same.
I hope I’m wrong. I hope they didn’t just grab a bunch of pretty pictures off the internet and put them in something they are selling to the public. That they either took those images themselves or have permission to use them. If that is the case, though, FFS!! CITE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER AND THAT YOU HAVE PERMISSION!
Sheesh! Don’t be an asshole!
Okay. End Rant. Maybe…