What is Copyright Infringement and How Serious is It?
Copyright is something at is very important when it comes to the protection of intellectual property. So basically, what is all the fuss around copyrighting? Well, to be short, it is a law that will protect any kind of work like literary works, musical works, movies, radio broadcasts and so on, from being redistributed or aired by someone else, which is not related in any way to them. These are called copyright laws and they will never let anyone use the content other have worked to create without the sole permission of the authors or creators of that certain content.
These laws are usually very stringent and they will depend on the country where each of us will be living in. So yes, if you are dealing with Copyright Infringement you should know that you are in for some big trouble. Let us now take a look at the various types of works that can be a subject of Copyright Infringements and which we have already mentioned above:
Photographs, sculpture, graphic work, architecture and so on are part of the artistic works. This means that these works are very imposing when it comes to the visuals side. If you fall in this category and have such works under your sleeve, then you should know that they are very well protected by the law.
Musical works includes everything that is related to music and you should know that not only will your lyrics be the subject of copyrighted protection, but also the notes that you have used in your songs.
Books, poems, business letters, they are all part of the literary works and it would take a long time if we were to name all of them here. You will never have to worry about your works being plagiarized by others, as there are stringent laws that will protect you from these people.
When it comes to Infringement of copyright ,video recordings like movies, soundtracks, radio shows, they can also be very well covered by the law and even the soundtrack of a movie will be considered as part of the movie, even if it belongs to many artists.
Who are Getty Images and why are they demanding I pay them £2,000 for a photo on my home page?
Here is an article by Ishbel MacPherson
Ishbel MacPherson is a Senior Associate in DLA Piper’s Intellectual Property and Technology Team.
Getty Images is a photographic agency which licences images on behalf of photographers. Getty Images uses image tracking technology to crawl the web and identify unauthorised use of images licensed by it.
When an unauthorised image is identified, Getty Images writes to the owners of the website asking them to take down the authorised image and pay an amount equivalent to the licence fee that Getty Images would have charged them for their use of the image.
Yes, they do mean it
Getty Images will pursue their claims all the way to court if they don’t get a response to their letters, as removals firm JA Coles of Manchester and London found to their cost in 2009.
Getty Images wrote to JA Coles requesting that they remove an image from their website and seeking payment for their use of the image. JA Coles removed the image but did not respond to Getty Images’ letters about payment.
Getty Images sued in the High Court for copyright infringement. After taking legal advice JA Coles settled the case, admitting copyright infringement and agreeing to pay damages and Getty Images’ legal costs. The damages were £1,953,31. The legal costs are reported to have been in the region of £24,000!
What you should do
Remove the image from your website and contact Getty to say that you have removed the image with no admission of liability, you are investigating their claims, and you will get back to them when your investigation is concluded.
Check the image catalogue reference provided by Getty Images to verify whether the image you are using is the same as the Getty Images’ image they have identified.
Check where you got the image from. In most cases the website creator has taken an image from the internet based on the genuine but mistaken belief that, if there is no copyright notice, the image is available to use for free.
If your investigation verifies Getty Images’ claims, work out what the appropriate licence fee would have been for the use you have made of the image and seek to settle any copyright infringementwith Getty Images, making sure that you get a fully executed Getty Images Settlement Agreement in return.
If your website was created by an independent web designer you may be able to recover this cost from them, depending on the terms of your contract. read more
Getty Settlement Demand Letter
Here is just a short video on Getty Images and their practices, you will need to scroll to about 1 minute 25 secs into this, but worth it.
Getty Images extortion scheme
Taking the Copyright infringement and enforcement argument to another level or as they like to say “Calling the kettle black” are Mathew Chan and Oscar Michelin of ELI – Extortion Letter Info website. Certainly worth checking out especially if you are in USA.