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Photographers face copyright threat after shock court ruling

Discussion in 'News - Discussion' started by CSBC, Jan 24, 2012.

  1. CSBC

    CSBC RIP (News Editor)

  2. Graham_RM13

    Graham_RM13 Well-Known Member

    Search for images of "Red Bus Big Ben" and you get over 4 Million of them. The Lawyers are going to make a fortune from this one...

    How soon will it be untill there are No Win No Fee adverts on TV for compensation claims :mad:
  3. sandman652001

    sandman652001 Member

    As an outsider Looking at Great Britain........ between the anti terror stops, the private security on power trips and this ruling by the courts I'm beginning to wander if somebody is putting something in the water over there.....have they all gone mad?
  4. Atavar

    Atavar Well-Known Member

    So all we have to do is find one photographer on earth who took a similar image before 2005 and Temple infringed their copyright and owes them millions?

    Get searching chaps, your picture could be worth £££.

    I kind of see what they are getting at saying:
    - but its very rocky ground. the three main points, Colour popping, Big Ben and red London buses, are all far to common in image culture to be able to say categorically that party A directly coppied party B even when all three are combined.

    It'd be like saying your next door neighbour was copying you because they got dressed, had some cornflakes and drove to work in the morning, just like you did. Yes, they could be wearing a different colour suit, could have had weetabix instead of cornflakes and could cycle to work but are they still copying you? The result is the same, after all...
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2012
  5. JackBassV

    JackBassV New Member

    Given that the images are of a Red object in the foreground and a monochrome background, maybe Steven Spielberg should sue both of them for stealing his idea from Schindlers List (girl in red coat, monochrome background.) That was made in 1993, so predates either photo.

    The Judge has made a major error. Not only are the bus and even the location photographed on a regular basis. And the technique isn't new either.

  6. Bob Maddison

    Bob Maddison Well-Known Member

    I suspect that the real problem was not the photograph itself, but the fact that the 'bus was displayed agains a monochrome background in both. This meant photo manipulation.

    On the other hand, I can achieve exactly the same effect in camera using the colour selection setting on my Canon Ixus 750!!!
  7. pilliwinks

    pilliwinks Well-Known Member

    From today, photography is dead.

    With apologies for copyright infringement to Paul Delaroche who made the comment from which this is obviously derived (in 1839).
  8. Mark

    Mark Well-Known Member

    An interesting item that demonstrates the complexity of the ruling in IP terms.

    First, it is important to read the judgements that resulted in this ruling. The case isn't quite the simple "he copied my picture" issue that the journalistic summary may indicate. The defendants, as I understand the paperwork (and paraphrase the complex issues), originally set out to reproduce their own copy of the original image. That image was so similar that they accepted the initial 'copyright challenge', the only argument was about the magnitude of unpaid licence fees (£500 v £2000). The judge settled on a sum of £1,500 as being appropriate. Following this case, the defendants created an alternative image using similar techniques and asked the judge to decide if this was different enough to not create a 'copyright issue'. His Honour Judge Birss QC decided that there were still too many similarities.

    Secondly, some numbers...

    A boolean search [+"Red Bus" +"Big Ben"] knocks that number down to 41,500.

    Looking through the resultant set of images, a fair proportion can be instantly eliminated as they don't display the spot colour technique used by the original image creator [edit: no-one has (to the best of my knowledge) claimed Intellectual Rights over the technique itself]. There are however a significant number of images that remain. Some are simple "its on the internet, therefore I can rip it off for free" copies, others may be affected by this ruling.

    The question then is if it is financially sensible to pursue these claims through the courts...
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2012
  9. beejaybee

    beejaybee Marvin

    Yeah, been that way for ages, how else to explain us not having a revolution & getting rid of the political overclass that ruins all our lives.
  10. Atavar

    Atavar Well-Known Member

    Aha, excellent. Thanks for that, Mark. What would we do without you?

    Right, i'm off to find my shoe. It flew off over into next doors garden when i kneejerked.
  11. LargeFormat

    LargeFormat Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately it's in the County Court and it is such small beer that it is unlikely to be tested in a higher court so we won't know whether or not it is binding.
  12. Mark

    Mark Well-Known Member

    Absolutely. It is, however, persuasive ;)
  13. G3few

    G3few Active Member

    I have been a photographer for well over 60 years. As I have always understood things, if I take a picture of (say a view) and my friend takes the same view from the same spot, we each have copyright in our individual pictures.
    So, if I photgraph a Red Bus with the Big Ben in the background. I own the copyright in my picture.
    Surely, if I then decide to make the background monocrome, it is still my copyright.
    If it isn't then the world is suely going mad. It can not be claimed that the idea is new or even origonal. It has all been done before!

  14. 0lybacker

    0lybacker In the Stop Bath

    Before everyone gets in a total tizz about this, I seem to recall Case Law may be ahead of this ruling. Unfortunately cannot remember the details.

    Time was end of '80's or early 90's, decision was in UK court, may have involved fashion photo, I think almost certainly in editorial use, possibly in another jurisdiction. Involved a rear view of human subject taken in unusual way(!). Unfortunately, feeble cranial RAM is unable at present to drag anymore detail from H(ea)D!! :(:eek:

    Anyone help?
  15. AndyTake2

    AndyTake2 Well-Known Member

    OK, anyone here got a colour popped photo of a bus in front of parliament that was taken before the two shots mentioned?
    Let them know and sue the buggers.
  16. G3few

    G3few Active Member

  17. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

  18. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    He'd best get a good lawyer then...;)
  19. AlanClifford

    AlanClifford Well-Known Member

    The arrangement of elements in two photos seem totally different to me. For a start, the second photo does not include the side of the bridge, the steps nor the river. The first photo gives prominence to the lighting structure, particularly as that appears to be the point of focus. There is no lighting structure in the foreground of the second photo.

    In the second photo, the juxtaposition of the bus and Big Ben's tower is important as is the much stronger perspective lines of the bus itself leading towards the tower. The first photo exhibits none of these characteristics.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2012
  20. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    Good grief - I'd need to appeal that decision.

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