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Thread: Should I give my intern company my images?

  1. #1
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    Default Should I give my intern company my images?

    Hello Everyone,

    Hoping to seek some advice on my current situation.


    Currently, I am doing my internship at a dance company as a marketing intern. While my job scope does not officially include "photography works", photographs are technically something used for marketing. My supervisor made me do some form of event-dance photography of the company's programmes and wants me to hand over the images. Most likely, these would be posted on Facebook.

    My primary specialisation is in music photography and I do have a couple of paying clients. I wouldnt say I am a hobbyist nor a top-notch photographer but I do take my work seriously.

    On one hand, it is due to my company that I gain access to photograph these dance images. Additionally, music and dance are rather similar, hence letting my colleagues see these images could provide me the possibility of future opportunities (which I am rather doubtful actually).

    On another, I am concerned that due to my status of an "intern" , my work would become "company property", possibly used for future publicity without crediting or reimbursements since I am a company staff.

    If I refuse to provide my images or employ several tactics such as "low=res" samples, I am afraid that my grades are being threatened. I hope that the experienced veterans here could provide me a tip or two.

    Thank you so much!

  2. #2
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    You have to decide for yourself what is more important. Do note the following:

    1. Value of the images: Are these images that important to you that you cannot let your company use them?
    2. Value of your internship: Do you value this internship a lot? do your grades for this internship matter to you a lot?
    3. You have been tasked to do the photography for company events/programmes. So technically, you have been commissioned to do the work. If so, the company owns all the copyright unless you have some form of black and white stating otherwise.
    4. Are you being paid by the company as an intern? If your answer is yes, then technically the company owns the copyright to all images you shot.
    5. If the photos are company property, it doesn't matter whether you hand the images over or not, you still cannot use them in any other way without the company's consent.
    6. Also check your internship/employment contract on all the terms and conditions. There should be a clause that says that every thing you do for the company belongs to the comapny.

    In the end, are these pictures so valuable and so good that you have to have them and not pass them over to the company, who asked you to shoot company programmes and company events in the first place?

    If I am the boss of the company, and if you refuse to hand over the pictures, I would fire you right away.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 7th October 2015 at 01:22 AM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    What's new? Exploitation of interns from wash toilet, sweep the floor, take photos, seize their copyrights, pay measly salary, sometimes never pay at all, sometimes even slap the intern physically plus verbal insults.

    See video here:


    If your job scope does not involve cooking breakfast for your boss, and your boss asked you to cook, and you agreed, after you cooked, you don't want to serve the food, and come and post in cooking forum and ask people should you give your boss the food? What do you think?

    You ask me, I ask who, I ask you now, you ask yourself, who agreed to the job? Who smart, who stupid? Whats the learning lesson? Sometimes in life, we have act smart, sometimes we have to act stupid. Sometimes show talent, sometimes hide talent. Do you know when the time?

    This is a valuable lesson. Hope you learn something and squeeze the most out of it. Good luck and take care.
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    It doesn't belong to you. It belongs to the company.
    Don't brag about your accomplishments; Show us your future works.

  5. #5
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Is work for hired.

    Just go and kiss your photos good bye and wise up next time.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    Against my better judgement I write this. Most have spoken directly about the situation. Here are a couple of comments from different angles. 1. You only think that the photos are "worth" a lot - i.e. there is a "gold mine" of value there. Actually it probably a lot less than what you thought. The single biggest value from the photos is probably the fact you got to shoot a different aspect of work. That's the intangible value. So giving up the photos will result in you suffering no real loss - they were never "yours" to begin with. 2. the other value point here is that it is currently part of your portfolio. - you should talk sensibly with the person in charge of you and ask for permission to use this as part of your portfolio; not for sale to other parties or sale as stock images. You need to understand what you are doing - which you do not, at times you need to see the big picture and act accordingly - again which you are not.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    Quote Originally Posted by ellery View Post
    Against my better judgement I write this. Most have spoken directly about the situation. Here are a couple of comments from different angles. 1. You only think that the photos are "worth" a lot - i.e. there is a "gold mine" of value there. Actually it probably a lot less than what you thought. The single biggest value from the photos is probably the fact you got to shoot a different aspect of work. That's the intangible value. So giving up the photos will result in you suffering no real loss - they were never "yours" to begin with. 2. the other value point here is that it is currently part of your portfolio. - you should talk sensibly with the person in charge of you and ask for permission to use this as part of your portfolio; not for sale to other parties or sale as stock images. You need to understand what you are doing - which you do not, at times you need to see the big picture and act accordingly - again which you are not.
    Fully agree with ellery. I don't see any exploitation on the part of the employer here. An opening for an intern is an opportunity for the intern to be exposed to the the real world. You have said so yourself that it is due to the company that you have access to the images. The starting point in your decision making is that the company owns the image and your desire to be associated to the images taken so that you can expand your portfolio and experience. Your future clients would not care if you were paid for the shots - just that the images were great and give them the confidence to engage you for their work.
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    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlimeyOmega View Post
    If I refuse to provide my images or employ several tactics such as "low=res" samples, I am afraid that my grades are being threatened. I hope that the experienced veterans here could provide me a tip or two.
    Ask and see whether you can put your name as the watermark on the photos?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    Be the very best at what you do...110%.

    Hand over snaps and say "if you need any more snaps sir I will be happy to provide my service to you again". Maybe pretty soon all you will be doing is taking photos...which is what you want to do no???

    Get into mindset of using internship as a stepping stone to bigger and better things someday!

    No one goes to college or school to learn math or reading and writing or whatever...one goes there to learn how to manage time efficiently, how to coordinate as team player with other folks, etc.

    And remember this lesson someday if you ever make it to be the boss.

    Maybe he is testing you and you don't even realize it...
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 9th October 2015 at 08:18 AM.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    It's all about the choices you make.
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  11. #11
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikonzen View Post

    Maybe he is testing you and you don't even realize it...
    Bro interns in singapore get abused a lot more than in the USA, even though there are instances in yhe states where some are tasked to shove mailers into envelopes.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Should I give my intern company my images?

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Bro interns in Singapore get abused a lot more than in the USA, even though there are instances in the states where some are tasked to shove mailers into envelopes.
    School of hard knocks for real I guess???

    I think back to my days in school and PT job at oil company working my through and I really had it lush and cush way more so than my peers (experienced a lot of jealousy/envy also so had to learn some street smarts too)...took it for granted too. Live and learn and/or burn.

    Here some supervisors can be super mentally and verbally abusive and I have seen a few get physical in my time too.

    Last year at hotrod shop there was an employee who came back from lunch beer drunk. He got mouthy when the boss called him out on it. Boss just dropped him like a sack of potatoes one punch. When old boy came to the boss walked him to his car told him he would be okay and not to come back...LOL
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 13th October 2015 at 01:35 AM.
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