A copyright row has broken out after the winner of an online photography competition was accused of stealing the winning image from another photographer and disqualified.


The original image, captured in 2009 by Hengki Koentjoro, who sent it for publication by AP today to highlight the case

Hengki Koentjoro, a fine-art photographer from Indonesia, says his image was digitally manipulated and flipped horizontally when entered into Samsung’s ‘Live in the moment’ competition, which is giving away an NX300 camera to four category winners.

The controversial image had seemingly been entered by an Instagram member using the online name ‘bogdhan’, who has since been attacked in comments made by other users of the image-sharing website.


The image as it appears on the page of an Instagram user who has been accused of breaching Koentjoro’s copyright

The photo was submitted to the ‘MyCommute’ section of the contest earlier this summer.

Koentjoro, whose work was featured in Amateur Photographer (AP) last year, says he was only made aware of copyright theft following a tip-off from a friend weeks later.

Speaking yesterday, Koentjoro called for more education about photographic copyright among the general public.

He told AP: ‘Let’s warn other photographers to be careful with their work.’

At the time of writing, the Instagram user in question could not be reached for a response following a request sent by AP via the comments section of his online account.

Koentjoro said future competition organisers should demand to see raw-format image files when judging entries.

Rules for the competition, which was launched by Samsung’s base in South Korea, allowed entrants to submit photos via Facebook and Instagram.

Koentjoro has since received a statement from Samsung which read: ‘Thank you for alerting us in regard to this issue. We take copyright infringement very seriously and it is very unfortunate that [the] present case has taken place.

‘We have disqualified the applicant of this picture, and he is no longer the winner of the contest – neither will he receive the prize.

‘Further, we have taken down the announcement from all our channels.’

Samsung has not made any further comment on the issue.