Wednesday 1 May 2013

Photographs in focus as smudgers vent their fury at ERR

Beyonce by Denis O'Regan (c) Glastonbury Festivals Ltd 2011
Photographs are in the news in the UK as the snapper community in the UK digests the ramifications of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill which received Royal Assent last week. The Telegraph leads with the headline that the 'Instagram Act' could see 'social media users lose ownership of their own photos' comparing the provisions of the Act that relate to orphan works with Instagram's hastily withdrawn privacy  policy that caused such a stir back in December last. As many images available online have been stripped of all data, photographers fear that their images, however commercially valuable, will simply be deemed as orphan works when a 'diligent search' is made relating to the image by the new user uncovers no metadata. Dominic Young wrote that the UK had 'abolished copyright' saying that UK copyright owners no longer control the right to copy their work

Eleonora has just posted up a blog on the IPKat on the ramifications of the Act under the headline 'The end of copyright as we know it?' and it's well worth a read.

In other snapper news, and with a very dfferent approach to controlling images, Beyonce has reportedly banned professional photographers from her entire 'Mrs Carter Show' world tour, which began in Serbia earlier in April. Purportingto be taken from information for media outlets wishing to cover the shows, Facebook page Music Photographers has posted a paragraph of text saying: "There are no photo credentials for this show. Local news outlets, including print and online, will be given a link to download photos from every show. They will need to register to access the photos"  for media use. Those official photos are apparently all taken by one photographer, Frank Micelotta for Associated Press. The move seemingly stems from  the incident this year in which Buzzfeed posted, and then refused to take down, photographs from Beyonce's Super Bowl performance, which Beyonce’s PR team deemed to be "unflattering". The star has asked fans for no flash photography and not to post photos online either. The Huffington Post says that 'B' has failed here, with fans posting thousands of images on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter - and with fan shots possibly replacing snaps by professionals in the media - which may not quite be what was intended by Mrs Carter's minders ........


Ben said...

The IPO has now issued a note on how the ERRA will affect photographers, accompanied by a "myth and fact" summary: This note addresses some of the points raised by campaign group Stop43 and their claim that UK photographers should feel "Royally f*cked by the UK Intellectual Property Office and UK Government". I also understand a meeting is scheduled between representatives of the photographic industry, The Royal Photographic society and the British Copyright Council and minister Viscount Younger, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Intellectual Property at the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills.

There is plenty more on the IPKat - over twenty lively comments on Eleonora's original article, and her own update!




john walker said...

Something that has not got attention so far is the orphans licensing register and how will its fixed flag fall costs be paid for. Its pretty obvious that a licensing register for genuine orphans'- of very low average market value- will struggle to cover the'flag fall' fixed operating costs out of the fees paid for the use of these orphans.

On the other hand mandated extended collective licensing would generate the large compulsory cross-subsidies needed to underwrite the work of licensing Orphans of low market value.