Forums > General Industry > Hollywood is here - Using Copyrighted Images

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

I've just found several of my images posted on this website:

http://www.hollywoodishere.com

I'm just wondering has anyone else found their images on this site? They've obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

Oct 18 12 01:52 am Link

Photographer

Eros Fine Art Photo

Posts: 2600

Torrance, California, US

This one looked kind of familiar...

http://www.todayifoundout.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/spam5.jpg

Oct 18 12 02:01 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

Eros Fine Art Photo wrote:
This one looked kind of familiar...

http://www.todayifoundout.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/spam5.jpg

MMMM!!! SPAM!!!

Oct 18 12 02:06 am Link

Photographer

Damon Strong

Posts: 1845

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Oct 18 12 02:28 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

Damon Strong wrote:
Mmmmm, Spam!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKRt5eGwiLg

Thanks for that!

All joking aside, does anyone have any constructive advice on unauthorised image usage by a third party?

Oct 18 12 02:39 am Link

Photographer

Basil Fairbanks Studio

Posts: 47

Chicago, Illinois, US

sci wrote:
Thanks for that!

All joking aside, does anyone have any constructive advice on unauthorised image usage by a third party?

Three questions. Is your name or the name of your studio clearly listed on the photograph they posted, or was it listed prior to and then cropped off the image they used? From the photos I saw there, I did not see any photo credits listed. Second. Since you discovered the image, have you filed a copyright notice with the U.S. Copyright Office? The fee to copyright an image, by the way, (I just checked), is $35.00. Lastly, have you contacted them?  If they claim "Fair use of Copyright", they have to prove they are a legitimate and recognized news service, or that the use of a photographer's image was necessary for the story, or unavoidable. But even then it can be a minefield of legal problems for the person/organization that uses your photo. I include a link to a legal opinion provided by an attorney who represents photographers: http://www.photoattorney.com/2008/05/fu … r-use.html
Just my two cents.

Oct 19 12 01:36 am Link

Photographer

Art of the nude

Posts: 11892

Olivet, Michigan, US

NGrigalunus wrote:
Three questions. Is your name or the name of your studio clearly listed on the photograph they posted, or was it listed prior to and then cropped off the image they used? From the photos I saw there, I did not see any photo credits listed. Second. Since you discovered the image, have you filed a copyright notice with the U.S. Copyright Office? The fee to copyright an image, by the way, (I just checked), is $35.00. Lastly, have you contacted them?  If they claim "Fair use of Copyright", they have to prove they are a legitimate and recognized news service, or that the use of a photographer's image was necessary for the story, or unavoidable. But even then it can be a minefield of legal problems for the person/organization that uses your photo. I include a link to a legal opinion provided by an attorney who represents photographers: http://www.photoattorney.com/2008/05/fu … r-use.html
Just my two cents.

I'm far from a legal expert, but

* it costs NOTHING to "copyright an image."

* I'm pretty sure there are more aspects to "fair use" than you mention.  In particular, you don't have to be a "legitimate and recognized news service" in all cases.

Oct 19 12 05:02 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

NGrigalunus wrote:

Three questions. Is your name or the name of your studio clearly listed on the photograph they posted, or was it listed prior to and then cropped off the image they used? From the photos I saw there, I did not see any photo credits listed. Second. Since you discovered the image, have you filed a copyright notice with the U.S. Copyright Office? The fee to copyright an image, by the way, (I just checked), is $35.00. Lastly, have you contacted them?  If they claim "Fair use of Copyright", they have to prove they are a legitimate and recognized news service, or that the use of a photographer's image was necessary for the story, or unavoidable. But even then it can be a minefield of legal problems for the person/organization that uses your photo. I include a link to a legal opinion provided by an attorney who represents photographers: http://www.photoattorney.com/2008/05/fu … r-use.html
Just my two cents.

Thanks for giving me your thoughts on this. To answer your questions:

1. No, there was no reference to me or my studio listed on the photos or anywhere near them for that matter. The images must have been taken off my website and I do not use watermarks on any images on my site.

2. I did not realise that I had to "pay someone" to copyright an image, no disrespect to you but that seems like a ridiculous thing to have to do. I have a disclaimer on the home page of my website which says:

Design & Copyright:
Silver Cloud Images, Barnacleagh, Thomastown, Arklow, Co.Wicklow, Ireland.
No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise) without prior written permission of the copyright holder.

Surely that's enough to cover any copyright issues.

3. No, I have yet to contact them and if I'm being honest, I'm not 100% sure what the best way to go about it is. This has never happened to me before so I have no experience in dealing with such matters. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

As for Fair Usage, there doesn't seem to be anything connected to my images such as a story or news article, they just appear to be in some sort of random gallery with other images which I'm sure they've probably copied from other sites.

Thanks for the link by the way, some useful information there.

Thanks for you input NGrigalunus and thanks also to Art of the nude for your thoughts.

Oct 19 12 06:55 am Link

Photographer

GER Photography

Posts: 7928

Imperial, California, US

Yeah, good luck wit dat! I don't go to random sites suggested by people. I call SPAM!! Two days in the brigg please!!:-))))

Oct 19 12 07:08 am Link

Photographer

Jeff Fiore

Posts: 9224

Pelham, New York, US

Art of the nude wrote:
I'm pretty sure there are more aspects to "fair use" than you mention.  In particular, you don't have to be a "legitimate and recognized news service" in all cases.

^^ This ^^

Oct 19 12 07:17 am Link

Photographer

Mortonovich II

Posts: 716

San Diego, California, US

sci wrote:
obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

Oct 19 12 08:07 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

ChiMo II wrote:

Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

Thanks for the advice. Again, I have absolutely no experience in DMCA takedown notices. Is this something I can draw up myself or should I seek legal advice?

Oct 19 12 08:20 am Link

Photographer

howard r

Posts: 513

Los Angeles, California, US

sorry to say this so often but you need to spend $13 on amazon and get yourself a copy of: ed greenberg's book "photographer's survival manual".

and if that's too much money for you, check out ed's website: http://thecopyrightzone.com/

also - you do not have to pay to own your copyright - but - you have to pay to register your copyright. registering your copyright gives you substantially more leverage when going after infringers.

ps: just saw you are in ireland. i have no idea about the laws in ireland.

Oct 19 12 08:34 am Link

Photographer

Florida Glamour Photogr

Posts: 459

Port Saint Lucie, Florida, US

howard r wrote:
sorry to say this so often but you need to spend $13 on amazon and get yourself a copy of: ed greenberg's book "photographer's survival manual".

(and then of course you need to read it)

also - you do not have to pay to own your copyright - but - you have to pay to register your copyright. registering your copyright gives you substantially more leverage when going after infringers.

how much more leverage? read the book.

+1

Sorry to say this thread does come off like spam because the site listed does not appear to have any of his images.

Oct 19 12 08:37 am Link

Photographer

Karl Blessing

Posts: 30853

Grand Rapids, Michigan, US

ChiMo II wrote:
Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

sci wrote:
Thanks for the advice. Again, I have absolutely no experience in DMCA takedown notices. Is this something I can draw up myself or should I seek legal advice?

If I am not mistaken DMCA take down notices only applies to US Copyright laws, so sending them to a non-US webhost or internet provider is pretty much useless (also don't think it applies unless the copyright holder is also an American).

Basically if you from Ireland sends a Takedown notice to say a provider operating out of Russia, and the site owner is also non-American (or a citizen of a nation where Digital Millennium Copyright Act has no jurisdiction), then it's pretty much ignored.

If you're serious about it, get with a lawyer familiar with both your own laws and that of the service provider.

Oct 19 12 09:13 am Link

Photographer

Karl Blessing

Posts: 30853

Grand Rapids, Michigan, US

Here's a sample of the DMCA takedown notice, but as I said it may not even apply to your geographic location, nor that of the provider.

SAMPLE DMCA TAKE DOWN NOTICE
My name is INSERT NAME and I am the INSERT TITLE of INSERT COMPANY NAME.  A website that your company hosts (according to WHOIS information) is infringing on at least one copyright owned by my company.

An article was copied onto your servers without permission. The original ARTICLE/PHOTO, to which we own the exclusive copyrights, can be found at:

PROVIDE WEBSITE URL

The unauthorized and infringing copy can be found at:

PROVIDE WEBSITE URL

This letter is official notification under Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (”DMCA”), and I seek the removal of the aforementioned infringing material from your servers. I request that you immediately notify the infringer of this notice and inform them of their duty to remove the infringing material immediately, and notify them to cease any further posting of infringing material to your server in the future.

Please also be advised that law requires you, as a service provider, to remove or disable access to the infringing materials upon receiving this notice. Under US law a service provider, such as yourself, enjoys immunity from a copyright lawsuit provided that you act with deliberate speed to investigate and rectify ongoing copyright infringement. If service providers do not investigate and remove or disable the infringing material this immunity is lost. Therefore, in order for you to remain immune from a copyright infringement action you will need to investigate and ultimately remove or otherwise disable the infringing material from your servers with all due speed should the direct infringer, your client, not comply immediately.

I am providing this notice in good faith and with the reasonable belief that rights my company owns are being infringed. Under penalty of perjury I certify that the information contained in the notification is both true and accurate, and I have the authority to act on behalf of the owner of the copyright(s) involved.

Should you wish to discuss this with me please contact me directly.

Thank you.

/s/YOUR NAME

Address
City, State Zip
Phone
E-mail

Usually you follow the path of:
1) Submit to website owner.
if ignored
2) send to hosting provider
if ignored
3) send to upstream provider (their datacenter, ISP, etc).

Oct 19 12 09:15 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

howard r wrote:
sorry to say this so often but you need to spend $13 on amazon and get yourself a copy of: ed greenberg's book "photographer's survival manual".

and if that's too much money for you, check out ed's website: http://thecopyrightzone.com/

also - you do not have to pay to own your copyright - but - you have to pay to register your copyright. registering your copyright gives you substantially more leverage when going after infringers.

ps: just saw you are in ireland. i have no idea about the laws in ireland.

Thanks for the info, I will look into getting that book and I will have a read of the info on Ed's site.

In relation to paying to register your copyright, again, that's something I've no experience in, I assume that's a one off payment thing?

I will certainly seek legal advice on what applies in my country.

Florida Glamour Photogr wrote:
+1

Sorry to say this thread does come off like spam because the site listed does not appear to have any of his images.

As I mentioned before, my images appear to be in some random gallery. I did a Google Image search using the upload feature on some of my images and that's how I found them. If you look at this page on the site, the 1st, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 8th image on this page were taken by me.

http://www.hollywoodishere.com/celeb/266930/images/1

Looking through the other pages within this gallery, there are more of my images: On page 2, there are 3. On page 3, there are 4. On page 4, there are 2. On page 5, there is 1, There are none on page 6 but there are 2 on page 7.

Incidentally, the title of the gallery is the name of a model I photographed many years ago. Some of the images contained within the gallery are of her but for the most part, they just seem to be a random collection of images.

Oct 19 12 09:20 am Link

Photographer

Karl Blessing

Posts: 30853

Grand Rapids, Michigan, US

HollywoodIsHere.com is owned by someone in India:

Registrant Contact:
   Multi Screen Media Pvt. Ltd.
   Kevin Tilva ()
   
   Fax:
   Plot No. 7, Interface Building, 2 / 3 / 4 Floor
   Near Goregaon Sports Complex, Malad West
   Mumbai, Maharashtra 400064
   IN

...

so DMCA would not appply. They're using a .com so ICANN which is regulated under US laws would technically apply, but copyright/trademark disputes would only involve the domain name and not the content provided.

Their hosting provider is unknown to me at this time, but they are fronted by Amazon Cloudfront:

46.51.218.41    SG    Singapore        1.3667, 103.8    Amazon Data Services Ireland Ltd    Amazon AWS Services - Cloudfront    amazonaws.com

So it could be a US server, however it's most likely somewhere in Asia being served/protected by cloudfront in that zone (it costs more to have it geo-distributed to the visitor's location).

Oct 19 12 09:20 am Link

Photographer

Karl Blessing

Posts: 30853

Grand Rapids, Michigan, US

What I used to do for affiliate marketers who often got sent fake DMCA takedown notices by their competitors to distrupt their landing pages, was they would setup on a large american web server, to put most of their websites on.

Then they would go order a linux VPS offshore such as russia, singapore, india, basically somewhere that's really cheap, low memory etc.

I would then install the nginx webserver (the same webserver modelmayhem runs off of but they just renamed it to IBServ to hide the old version), and simply point their domain name to the IP address of the VPS, the nginx webserver would just do a proxy_pass to the actual website location on their main server.

(and most of the time these marketers wouldn't use real information in the WHOIS which is of course against ICANN regulation)

So someone trying to send them a DMCA takedown notice attempting to disrupt their landing page would send it off to such offshore host where the content isn't even hosted but proxy'd thru and would simply be met with the provider ignoring them since DMCA doesn't apply to them.

Oct 19 12 09:26 am Link

guide forum

Photographer

GPS Studio Services

Posts: 36241

San Francisco, California, US

sci wrote:
obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

ChiMo II wrote:
Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

Forget the arguments that people are making about the OP not being from the U.S., it is irrelevant.   DMCA doesn't apply.  Most people here don't seem to understand what a takedown notice is for.

If John steals and image from you and then posts it on Paul's website, you as the photographer can send a DMCA takedown notice to Paul (or Paul's ISP) demanding that the image be taken down.  If you do that, and Paul takes the image down, then Paul can't be sued because John posted the image on his site.  It is called a safe harbor statute because, so long as Paul complies with the notice, he has no liability.  On the other hand, John can still be sued for stealing the image.

What the OP could do is to send a DMCA takedown notice to the ISP that hosts the Hollywood site.  If the ISP receives the takedown notice, and complies, then they have no liability under copyright.  That could be effective and might well get it taken down.  Sending it to the site though, is totally meaningless.

In the case of the OP, you don't send a DMCA takedown notice to the thief.  If you do, they might comply, but it is of no legal meaning.   Although we use the DMCA ourselves, it is designed to protect the 3rd party websites and ISP's, not us.

Oct 19 12 09:31 am Link

Photographer

sci

Posts: 107

Arklow, Wicklow, Ireland

Karl Blessing wrote:
HollywoodIsHere.com is owned by someone in India:

Registrant Contact:
   Multi Screen Media Pvt. Ltd.
   Kevin Tilva ()
   
   Fax:
   Plot No. 7, Interface Building, 2 / 3 / 4 Floor
   Near Goregaon Sports Complex, Malad West
   Mumbai, Maharashtra 400064
   IN

...

so DMCA would not appply. They're using a .com so ICANN which is regulated under US laws would technically apply, but copyright/trademark disputes would only involve the domain name and not the content provided.

Their hosting provider is unknown to me at this time, but they are fronted by Amazon Cloudfront:

46.51.218.41    SG    Singapore        1.3667, 103.8    Amazon Data Services Ireland Ltd    Amazon AWS Services - Cloudfront    amazonaws.com

So it could be a US server, however it's most likely somewhere in Asia being served/protected by cloudfront in that zone (it costs more to have it geo-distributed to the visitor's location).

Thanks for taking the time to find out all that info on the site in question. I haven't had much time to do any of my own research since starting this thread as I have been out of action with a back injury for the last few days. Having said that, I don't think I could have found as much info as you did so again, I am grateful that you have shared it with me.

Karl Blessing wrote:
What I used to do for affiliate marketers who often got sent fake DMCA takedown notices by their competitors to distrupt their landing pages, was they would setup on a large american web server, to put most of their websites on.

Then they would go order a linux VPS offshore such as russia, singapore, india, basically somewhere that's really cheap, low memory etc.

I would then install the nginx webserver (the same webserver modelmayhem runs off of but they just renamed it to IBServ to hide the old version), and simply point their domain name to the IP address of the VPS, the nginx webserver would just do a proxy_pass to the actual website location on their main server.

(and most of the time these marketers wouldn't use real information in the WHOIS which is of course against ICANN regulation)

So someone trying to send them a DMCA takedown notice attempting to disrupt their landing page would send it off to such offshore host where the content isn't even hosted but proxy'd thru and would simply be met with the provider ignoring them since DMCA doesn't apply to them.

This is all very interesting, thank you for that!

ei Total Productions wrote:

sci wrote:
obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

Forget the arguments that people are making about the OP not being from the U.S., it is irrelevant.   DMCA doesn't apply.  Most people here don't seem to understand what a takedown notice is for.

If John steals and image from you and then posts it on Paul's website, you as the photographer can send a DMCA takedown notice to Paul (or Paul's ISP) demanding that the image be taken down.  If you do that, and Paul takes the image down, then Paul can't be sued because John posted the image on his site.  It is called a safe harbor statute because, so long as Paul complies with the notice, he has no liability.  On the other hand, John can still be sued for stealing the image.

What the OP could do is to send a DMCA takedown notice to the ISP that hosts the Hollywood site.  If the ISP receives the takedown notice, and complies, then they have no liability under copyright.  That could be effective and might well get it taken down.  Sending it to the site though, is totally meaningless.

In the case of the OP, you don't send a DMCA takedown notice to the thief.  If you do, they might comply, but it is of no legal meaning.   Although we use the DMCA ourselves, it is designed to protect the 3rd party websites and ISP's, not us.

Thanks for your advice on this, again I am waving the "clueless" flag as I really have no experience in these matters. Based on what you've said, would I be right in saying that this issue needs to be addressed to whoever owns the site?

Oct 19 12 10:08 am Link

Model

JoJo

Posts: 25513

Clearwater, Florida, US

sci wrote:
obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

ChiMo II wrote:
Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

DMCA is American law
Last time I checked there were 193 countries - America is just 1 country
American law does not trump the laws of other countries in those other countries.

Why would someone from Ireland send a DMCA takedown to a site in India?

Oct 19 12 11:08 am Link

guide forum

Photographer

GPS Studio Services

Posts: 36241

San Francisco, California, US

sci wrote:
obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Thanks,

Trevor.

ChiMo II wrote:
Send them a DMCA takedown notice.

JoJo wrote:
DMCA is American law
Last time I checked there were 193 countries - America is just 1 country
American law does not trump the laws of other countries in those other countries.

Why would someone from Ireland send a DMCA takedown to a site in India?

The issue is not where the OP is from, it is where the site is hosted.  Since the Hollywood site is a U.S. operated website, it is most likely hosted by a US ISP.  If that is the case, and a DMCA takedown notice is sent to the ISP (Not to the website), they will probably comply. The DMCA doesn't require that you be a US citizen to make use of a takedown notice.  More importantly, since the OP would most likely be suing for infringement in a U.S. court, it would be to his advantage to have used the DMCA first.

Oct 19 12 11:13 am Link

Photographer

MFS Modelphilia

Posts: 402

Hilo, Hawaii, US

sci wrote:
I've just found several of my images posted on this website:

http://www.hollywoodishere.com

I'm just wondering has anyone else found their images on this site? They've obviously copied them from my website without my permission, has anyone got any advice on how to get them removed?

Meanwhile *this thread* languishes on the photography forum without any responses:
http://www.modelmayhem.com/po.php?thread_id=891745

Let's stop whining, put our heads together, and SOLVE the problem!


≥≥≥
EDIT: OMG, I didn't realize that posting just one response to an old thread would result in it's moving up to the top of the forum! My apologies for having done that with multiple threads. I had mistakenly figured that, with the older threads, my late responses would only show up when someone searched for copyright-related threads. This is embarrassing! In retrospect, I should have made one post somewhere that listed all of those various related threads. SORRY!

May 16 13 09:11 pm Link