So after years of man flu I finally caught the real thing and boy was it awful. I just spent the better part of a week delirious, sweating, shivering and aching. After a couple of nights it became clear that a few beers and a cheeky rum wern’t gonna cut it.
When you’re laid up in bed with a weeks worth of work cancelled, it’s inevitable that boredom will set in and you’re gonna decide at some point to catch up with email and dip in to social media.
Now, with a temperature well into 3 figures my fuse was short and I figured It was high time I called out a few of those leach pages that steal my work on an all to regular basis.
I spent a couple of hours politely, (at first) asking for my photos to be removed, and if I got no answer, I reported them to Instagram for abuse of my intellectual property. It didn’t take long for the whiny emails to begin dropping into my inbox.
For those not versed in the ways of these pages, heres what they do. They setup a page called for example “Tattooed Girls of Instagram”, In their bio, they will often say something like, “DM us your pics to be featured” Now here’s a thing, I have never “DM’d” one of these pages and I don’t know anyone who has. I certainly don’t believe any of the models I’ve shot do that. So, what do they do, they just steal the photos anyway, after all, without photos, their page is nothing. Once you ask them to remove your own work, they’ll often block you.
So, what actually happens when you do DM the page owners, well, they automatically assume you’re desperate enough to require their services, so they send you a price list of what they can do for you if they post your work. The conversation pictured below took place between a reputable tattoo artist and a page after they had asked him to DM them.
Even well known publications have taken to posting the hard work of photographers/models and artists, assuming that because its in the public domain, it must be free, well it isn’t.
There seems to be some basic misconception that posting, isn’t the same as publishing, it is. and thats why the lawyers of one major magazine advised their client to pay up rather than argue the toss with me in court.
I couldn’t make this shit up…