Click Official ELI Links
Get Help With Your Extortion Letter | ELI Phone Support | ELI Legal Representation Program
Show your support of the ELI website & ELI Forums through a PayPal Contribution. Thank you for supporting the ongoing fight and reporting of Extortion Settlement Demand Letters.

Author Topic: Masterfile's Copyright Registration Method Held Invalid by California Court  (Read 37896 times)

Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
You might want to look into Oscar's letter program. It costs $200 but your client (and you) will no longer be contacted by them. All further collection attempts would need to got to Oscar. It is not a guarantee that they will not sue. But I don't believe it has happened yet.

THIS!!! and you keep your client happy, and can rest easy for the next 3 years...

123RF.com has "free" images??
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

Addy

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
You might want to look into Oscar's letter program. It costs $200 but your client (and you) will no longer be contacted by them. All further collection attempts would need to got to Oscar. It is not a guarantee that they will not sue. But I don't believe it has happened yet.

THIS!!! and you keep your client happy, and can rest easy for the next 3 years...

123RF.com has "free" images??

What happens after 3 years? Forgive my ignorance. I've been reading the forums as fast as I can but am not savvy just yet.

Re: 123rf.com free images. Yes indeed!! Go to http://www.123rf.com/browsefreeimages.php  Many artists put their images up for free downloads. They are mainly 72dpi, but that's fine for web use. :)  I spend some time there a couple of times a month and grab anything I think may be useful in the future (foods, people, holiday images).

btw ... I got a chuckle out of a blog from the author of the dastardly image in my case. Someone asked him if he gets consent from people in cafes before he paints them into his scenes. He said,

"I have never asked anyone's permission. If someone looks uncomfortable I will paint the areas around them first and wait till someone else comes along. The cafe seems somehow like a stage to me. When the right person shows I paint them in place. My paintings usually are not so detailed that a person would say 'that is me' so I think I'm pretty safe there."

Really?? I find that wonderfully hypocritical. One set of rules for the artist, and one set of rules for everyone else.

Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
3yrs is the statute of limitations, after this they cannot file suit..
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
I was interested in 123rf's "free" images, from their TOS / EULA:

7. 123RF and the Content are made available to you "AS IS," "AS AVAILABLE," and "WITH ALL FAULTS." 123RF, its employees, directors, and officers, and anyone else associated with 123RF disclaims, to the fullest extent permitted by law, any and all warranties, express or implied, including without limitation warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, non infringement, or that your usage of 123RF will be uninterrupted, error free of computer viruses or other damaging materials. When you access and acquire Content, you do so at your risk. 123RF, its employees and officers, and anyone else acting on behalf of 123RF also disclaims any and all common-law duties, including without limitation duties of reasonable care and workmanlike effort. 123RF, its employees, directors, and officers, and anyone acting on behalf of 123RF make no representation or warranty as to your right to use any individual's name, likeness, and/or image appearing in the Content without first obtaining appropriate rights from such individual.

(a) You understand and acknowledge that neither 123RF, its employees, directors, and officers, nor anyone acting on behalf of the 123RF website or sites has made any representation or warranty that Your use of Content will not infringe or violate the trademark rights of any third party, or constitute a false designation of origin or any other form of unfair competition, and

(b) You understand that You should seek competent counsel before using Content on or in connection with any goods or services or for any other commercial purposes.


The bolded areas were highlighted by me...yup the images are indeed "FREE", but you use that at your own risk, if they infringe it's your problem, and it is probably a good idea to "seek competent council" before using any content......
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

Addy

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
So, in essence, to be safe I should only use images I have created from scratch and copyrighted ... or get out of the web design arena and let someone else have the worry. What a world. Even if you pay for an image, you can't be guaranteed safe use? I remember when artists couldn't wait to get exposure for their works. Now, it's just a greedy racket.

Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
So, in essence, to be safe I should only use images I have created from scratch and copyrighted ... or get out of the web design arena and let someone else have the worry. What a world. Even if you pay for an image, you can't be guaranteed safe use? I remember when artists couldn't wait to get exposure for their works. Now, it's just a greedy racket.

Not what I said.. You only use images you create, or purchase images, and keep records of everything, and be sure to read and understand the terms of use.. Getting out of the web arena is completley your choice, I never suggested such..and I'm not getting out because of some greedy trolls, by them pursuing me has cost them dozens of customers that will never purchase from them.
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

DavidVGoliath

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 221
    • View Profile
Here's a little story that involves 123rf.com

Almost one year ago, I found a website using one of my photographs, with a byline credit "Pic retrieved from anothersite.com"; I performed a WHOIS search, got the site admins email address and sent an infringement notification, seeking settlement for the lost license fee.

At the same time, I also sent a near identical email to the anothersite.com, as they were also infringing.

A little over a day after I had emailed the first web admin, he responded saying that he had gotten my shot from 123rf.com, going so far as to include the URL where I could find my shot on 123rf

I quizzed him a bit on this point, as if he had indeed gotten it from that image library, why did the credit line say "Image retrieved from anothersite.com"; his explanation was that the admin for anothersite.com had told him that they'd gotten it from 123rf.com.

In the intervening period, the site admin from anothersite.com had repled to my email and agreed to settle for the lost license fee.

Still with me? Good.

So I got back to the admin of the first site and informed him that, since he'd licensed the photograph from 123rf.com, I'd need a copy of that license so I could provide it to the authorities, as an act of fraud had taken place i.e. someone had uploaded my shot to 123rf.com with intent to fraudulently obtain income from it.

I also contacted 123rf.com at this time to get the ID of whomever had uploaded the shot, informing them that they would likely be contacted by both my copyright attorney and such law enforcement agencies as woudl be necessary to investigate the fraud.

I informed the site admin that I was suspending my demand for payment of my lost license fee pending the outcome of any investigation that law enforcement would undertake; I reiterated my request for him to supply me with any information or records from 123rf.com that would help in this regard.

This is where it took a turn for the surreal.

After a little back-and-forth emailing with the admins at 123rf.com, I got this as my final response

"We are unable to find out who was the contributor who has stolen your image; this being said, we would require the contributor's Username from the client, but since the image has already been removed from our server, we are unable to investigate any further."

Also, despite informing the site admin that I was suspending my infringement claim pending what might turn into a criminal investigation, he volunteered to pay my license fee of $121.00.. in fact, the funds were in my PayPal account before I'd even read his message.

What I found most odd is that, in searching 123rf.com, there were no other images of mine on the site - not from the same event, or any other shots I'd taken. All that had been there was the one shot that a site admin had claimed to have licensed from them.

More troubling still is that 123rf.com were unable to provide me with any information as to how my shot wound up on their site in the first place.

Absent any hard data for me to put toward law enforcement - and since both sites had settled with me for the licenses that were due - I put the issue on the back burner... though I still periodically check 123rf.com to ensure none of my shots are up there.

SoylentGreen

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1503
    • View Profile

"law enforcement agencies"?
What the hell are you on about now?

So, they sent over the "bobbies" with their little helmets and billy clubs to your "flat" in Croydon ?
Next, they ran around like keystone cops to find out who "stole" your snapshot?

Holy shit.  Get a life.  Also, post the correspondence here so that we can verify your story.

S.G.


Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
Now, Now Soylent, we all know that copyright infringement is a criminal offense...
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

SoylentGreen

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1503
    • View Profile
Exactly.  I'm glad that GvD is posting here, though.
Because I'm glad to have an example of what the problem in the industry really is.

In fact, I'm going to be here every day reading GvD's postings, and exposing his/her lies.
That's the way it's going to be from now on.

S.G.


Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi)

  • ELI Defense Team Member
  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3354
    • View Profile
    • ExtortionLetterInfo
wasn't it that fucktard Timothy McCormack that threatened jail time in one of his extortion letters?? or maybe i'm confusing Seattle Attorney and ass hat Timothy B. McCormack with one of the other douche bag trolls..
« Last Edit: June 08, 2013, 01:14:24 PM by Robert Krausankas (BuddhaPi) »
Most questions have already been addressed in the forums, get yourself educated before making decisions.

Any advice is strictly that, and anything I may state is based on my opinions, and observations.
Robert Krausankas

I have a few friends around here..

SoylentGreen

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1503
    • View Profile
I think that it was some other troll attorney... I recall that it was a huge shitstorm.
He was reported to the state bar, I think.  I don't recall the name, but we haven't heard from him since.
Long time ELI friends will also remember that Brandon Sand went "full retard" in his demand letters too.

But, Timmy is the king of implying that the maximum statutory damages apply to de minimis infringements.
He also cites case law that has no relation to these kind of infringements.

I'm waiting for some idiot to come on here and say that it's a "felony" or some other milarkee.

Anyway, the "rights managed" sector is dying now that there's so much selection in the royalty free market.
I say, "good riddance".

S.G.




Addy

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
Robert - My last comment wasn't directed at your commentary. I was venting in general ... tossing my feelings into the ether. I'm just ticked off. It should be enough to cease and desist, since it's a show of good faith. But they want their blood money. btw ... the question in my comment was completely rhetorical.

I agree with you about artists and image houses losing customers. I know I will never use this particular artist's work again, and will never use MF in the future.

We are all artists in our own right. Graphic design, web design, photography, drawing, writing, cooking, sewing, music, etc. We put our heart and soul into what we do and, for the most part, it brings us joy and fulfillment. And, if we choose, it can bring in some money. But to bastardize it by mercilessly fleecing people with outrageous fees for unintended mishaps ... well, as you said, goodbye to the "rights managed" sector.

SG - Loved your reply to DvG. lol

Peeved

  • Guest
I think that it was some other troll attorney... I recall that it was a huge shitstorm.
He was reported to the state bar, I think.  I don't recall the name, but we haven't heard from him since.
Long time ELI friends will also remember that Brandon Sand went "full retard" in his demand letters too.

But, Timmy is the king of implying that the maximum statutory damages apply to de minimis infringements.
He also cites case law that has no relation to these kind of infringements.

I'm waiting for some idiot to come on here and say that it's a "felony" or some other milarkee.

Anyway, the "rights managed" sector is dying now that there's so much selection in the royalty free market.
I say, "good riddance".

S.G.




wasn't it that fucktard Timothy McCormack that threatened jail time in one of his extortion letters?? or maybe i'm confusing Seattle Attorney and ass hat Timothy B. McCormack with one of the other douche bag trolls..

Memory Lane...

http://www.extortionletterinfo.com/forum/getty-images-letter-forum/looking-for-more-info-on-actual-and-expected-results-from-defense-letter-program/msg7648/#msg7648

It was "Brandon Sand".
« Last Edit: June 08, 2013, 10:12:26 PM by Peeved »

DavidVGoliath

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 221
    • View Profile
"law enforcement agencies"?
What the hell are you on about now?

You obviously missed (or ignored) the part where the site admin claimed to have gotten my photograph from 123rf.com.

Now, I don't know about you, but uploading the copyright work of others, passing it off as your own with the intent to earn revenue from licensing of said work constitutes fraud... and, in this instance, there were two people that would have been defrauded.

1. The website admin whom supposedly licensed the photograph from 123rf.com
2. Myself

Had 123rf actually been able to supply me with information as to which of their users had uploaded the photograph in question, you're damn right I would have explored all options open to my by law, up to an including criminal charges being brought if at all possible.

Like I said, I found it troubling that 123rf was unable to supply me with any information as to whom had uploaded the photograph, and it was also more than a little odd that the site admin paid my licensing fee when I said I was suspending my claim against them pending the outcome of any investigation.

You think I'm "the problem" with the industry? Take your blinkers off, fella, and have a read through the first post I made to this site to better understand my position.

If you mentally want to lump me in with the stock agencies whose practices are often less than helpful to other creatives, go right ahead - just remember that I'm self-employed, register all my own works in a timely manner and only turn matters over to my attorney when

a) Attempts to negotiate for my lost license fee are rebuffed, or
b) The infringer is a corporate entity and/or headed up by or employs media professionals (i.e. people whom should know about copyrights and have no excuse to infringe)

If I think that someone is using my work within the bounds of fair use, I contact them and ask them to put in a proper byline credit and copyright notice if they haven't already done so.

If someone is using my work outwith the bounds of fair use, I'll seek my lost license fee from them and hopefully convert someone whom was probably unaware of image rights into a person who better understands and respects the work of creatives.

If you want to think that I'm "trolling", go ahead - I can't alter your opinion and, frankly, all it does is leave me disappointed that you're apparently so keen to have such a black-and-white view of people.

 

Official ELI Help Options
Get Help With Your Extortion Letter | ELI Phone Support Call | ELI Defense Letter Program
Show your support of the ELI website & ELI Forums through a PayPal Contribution. Thank you for supporting the ongoing fight and reporting of Extortion Settlement Demand Letters.