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09-30-2009, 07:58 AM   #1
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copyright

i was just wondering, if i wanted to copyright protect my pictures,.... how do i do it?

09-30-2009, 08:43 AM   #2
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If you live in the US, or indeed in almost every country on earth, your work is protected by copyright the moment you create it. No special steps are required to make it illegal for someone else to use your work without permission. However, if you want to increase the odds that someone who wants to use your work won't try to do so illegally, you can add a copyright message to your work. With a digital photo, that can be added to the EXIF and/or IPTC area of the image file using any photo management program. Seeing the copyright message might dissuade someone, just like putting a sign in your yard that you have an alarm system might dissuade someone from breaking in. But of course, it's illegal to break into your house whether you have a sign up or not. The only legal advantage to the copyright message is that if they do decide to steal your work, and later get caught, and get taken to court, they can't claim they didn't know it was protected or who owned the copyright, and therefore the fines can be higher. And in the very near future, the law may change to make those copyright messages more important. But note that they don't have to be actually visible on the image to have legal validity or to be effective - simply putting them in the EXIF/IPTC is sufficient.
09-30-2009, 08:49 AM   #3
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Marc's said it - simply put there is no fail-safe way of stopping someone who wants to use your images if they have access to it. But putting your personal details in the Copyright section of the EXIF data is the best way to indicate this restriction. Watermarking is a personal decision (I rarely do it but others do it to all their published images).
09-30-2009, 01:31 PM   #4
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ohh thank you,
but what is a EXIF/IPTC?
i have seen pictures on this forum that say stuff like copyright protected or like mikes photograpphy and stuff. and i was wondering how you do that?
can you do it from the camera?

09-30-2009, 06:23 PM   #5
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If you see it on the photograph itself - as in, convering part of the image - that what I referred to as a watermark. Completely unnecessary and irrelevant legally. All it does is annoy viewers, but it's true it might also have the effect of dissuading someone from stealing it by rendering the image too ugly to *want* to steal. Don't imagine that this annoying message has anything to do with the law. Legally, as I said, you get complete protection by placing the message in the EXIF or IPTC areas of the image, which are just areas of a file designed to hold information like that. They don't display when you display the picture, but most programs that display photos can display that information. Any photo managing program - like Windows Photo Gallery, ACDSee, Photoshop Elements, iPhoto, etc - should be able to write to those fields. If you use Flickr, this is the same information Flickr displays netx to the image and calls "Photo Properties". It also includes information on what camera you used, what your shutter speed was, etc - all that is automatically created by the camera. But the copyright message you usually have to add yourself. Many photo management programs can do this automatically while they download your images from the camera.
10-01-2009, 04:21 AM   #6
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I have been taking photos of items that I resell for a few years (I sell the item, not the photo). I've experienced problems with people using my photo to sell their similar item. Just as you were unaware of copyright and intellectual property restrictions as well as the details about exif information, I suspect that many of the "theives" aren't either. They just 'right click', and it's theirs - at least in ther mind.

I now watermark these photos with a visual mark - "©Sew-Classic" or "©Sew-Classic.com". I put it somewhere in the photo where it would be difficult to erase or mask over. The idea is to make it too much work to bother stealing. I am also careful that it doesn't block or distort the view of the item in the photo.

Fo photos that aren't for the purpose of marketing goods that I am selling- I don't watermark them visually. I don't even bother with putting copyright info in the exif details. Even for my photo that was published on the front page of a local paper- I just don't see them being "stolen"- I'm not that good.

Last edited by Sew-Classic; 10-01-2009 at 06:21 AM.
10-01-2009, 08:35 AM   #7
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sew-classic, how do you watermark your photos?
i still dont understand what EXIF/IPTC is...
but thank you all for helping
10-01-2009, 08:54 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by jolee1990 Quote
sew-classic, how do you watermark your photos?
i still dont understand what EXIF/IPTC is...
but thank you all for helping
photoshop or Lightroom can do it but I am sure other applications can too.

EXIF Description

It's the data inside the image that provides info about the image creation, resolution, camera settings and a host of other items.

10-01-2009, 08:57 AM   #9
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Exif

Exif is the metadata of your image.
every RAW/Jpeg out of your camera will have exif data.
it contains all info about the image like Camera model which took the image, Lens, Aperture, shutter speed, ISO, Date & time and many more.
these info are embedded in the Image. when you open your image in a viewer(lets say silky pix) these details can be seen.
hope this helps
10-01-2009, 01:52 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by jolee1990 Quote
i still dont understand what EXIF/IPTC is...
but thank you all for helping
A JPEG file contains two things: it contains image data (the little colored dots that make up your picture) and it contains "metadata" (information *about* your picture, like what camera you used, what shutter speed use used, a copyright message, etc). EXIF is one of the types of metadata that is stored in that JPEG file. When you load an JPEG file into a program designed to display the image data, it shows you the image. Load that same file into a program designed to show you the metadata, and it shows you the EXIF information as well as perhaps other metadata (IPTC is another type; it allows you to store a lot more information about your image).

The software that came with your camera (Pentax Photo Browser) displays both your image and the metadata - the image takes up most of the screen, but the EXIF information is displayed at the bottom. Similarly, Windows Photo Gallery shows you the picture at first, but if you right click an image and select Properties, it shows the metadata. I assume iPhoto offers something similar. Most programs that can display images can also show you the metadata. And most also let you *edit* the metadata to add a copyright message.

So again, your image is *already* protected by copyright law without you're doing a thing, but if you want to take an extra step to help increase your chances of winning money in a lawsuit if someone should ignore the law and steal your image anyhow and then get caught, add a copyright message to the EXIF. Again, many if not most programs that can download images from your camera can also add this automatically, and I recommend of taking advantage of that.

If you want to watermark your image to make it so people wouldn't even *want* to steal your image, then pretty much any program that lets you edit photos should be able to do that. ACDSee, Irfanview, Picasa, Photoshop Elements, etc.
10-02-2009, 03:38 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by jolee1990 Quote
sew-classic, how do you watermark your photos?
i still dont understand what EXIF/IPTC is...
but thank you all for helping


I us a free program called Photoscape to crop, resize and add a watermark. As you can see, these aren't "artsy" photos - just boring product shots. It's the photos of viintage sewing machines that were getting "stolen" and used by others on eBay. It's these machine photos that I tend to stick the "©" symbol on. Anyhow, watermarking solved the problem and didn't hurt sales in any way.

BTW, I hold down the "Alt" key while typing "0169" on the keyboard, to get the copyright symbol, ©.

Last edited by Sew-Classic; 10-02-2009 at 03:57 AM.
10-02-2009, 08:37 AM   #12
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Great example of a situation where watermarking makes perfect sense. BTW, on the keyboards I've used, it needs to be 0169 on the numeric keypad to get the copyright symbol.

One thing you can do in a lot of programs would be to create an image of your watermark with a transparent background, and then just keep re-using that same image as your watermark.
10-02-2009, 02:48 PM   #13
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We talk about this a lot.

Here are a few previous threads talking about copyright.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-processing-printing-software-darkroo...copyright.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-processing-printing-software-darkroo...-notice-2.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/general-talk/28653-copyright-sign.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/general-photography-techniques-styles/228...copyright.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-processing-printing-software-darkroo...copyright.html

Here are some additional information:
Copyright Tutorial | American Society of Media Photographers
10 Big Myths about copyright explained
Legal Pitfalls in Taking or Using Photographs of Copyright Material, Trademarks and People

On a Windows box - go here - download and enjoy:
http://www.microsoft.com/prophoto/downloads/tools.aspx

You can enter the copyright symbol © by holding typing in the following ALT+0169 on the numeric keypad, you can also using the Character Map application. If you are not using Windows, your mileage will vary (or keystrokes).

EXIF means metadata -- Data about the Data. These are fields that are part and parcel to JPEG and other image formats that contain information about the image. You can see some of these fields when (using windows) right click on an image file and select the "details" tab. Most modern image processing programs allow you to manipulate some of these fields pretty directly.

I do, by habit now, embed my copyright in images I put out on the web. This site has a mixed history with retaining EXIF/ITPC information. I think that if I have a landscape image the EXIF is retained, on portrait mode it is being removed. Go figure.

The Elitist - formerly known as PDL
10-03-2009, 07:36 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Great example of a situation where watermarking makes perfect sense. BTW, on the keyboards I've used, it needs to be 0169 on the numeric keypad to get the copyright symbol.

One thing you can do in a lot of programs would be to create an image of your watermark with a transparent background, and then just keep re-using that same image as your watermark.
Yep- I use the numeric keypad for the "©". Thanks for pointing that out.

I pretty much HATE post processing. I found Photoshop elements really unintuitive for me personally. (and I use CAD and many other programs for my drafting/design work so I'm not program 'phobic'). Since I hate it, I do as little PP as possible (yes, I hear the shrieks of horror from the crowd). Photoscape was easy for me to learn, let's me crop, resize and quickly add a watermark. That's pretty much all I ever do. Photscape is free too. It's certainly not the only or even the most popular PP game in town that makes watermarks......Right now, I'm too lazy to switch or even try something else.
10-03-2009, 02:25 PM   #15
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K7 allows you to place copyright into the EXIF data so you dont have to in PP. That said software like Lightroom will do it automatically once optioned in the prefs.
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