Huge canvas print - any copyright issues to safeguard oneself?


Andreq

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Jul 12, 2007
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#1
I hope to get some advice, especially from photographers who have experienced this.

I intend to make a huge canvas print. So I need to give the printing shop a very high resolution image to maintain print quality.

My friend cautioned me that it's better to ask the shop to sign some kind of form to say that I'm the copyright owner of that image, in case the shop chooses to use it without my permission in future.

That sets me thinking...

Well, it's not that my shot is award-winning, but decent enough to use commercially. Photographers have been wary of people leeching their images on the Internet. And there've been too many cases of pictures being "stolen" blatantly even by the press without giving proper acknowledgement to the rightful photographer.

So I'm wondering, in my case, since I'm giving to the shop a direct copy of the image, should I be extra careful and make the shop sign a form to state that they cannot use my image? It sounds like being paranoid to me, but thinking further with the above points, it may make sense. Not sure if the shop will be offended though....
 

Dfive

Senior Member
Nov 20, 2008
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Singapore lah....
#2
Interesting question.... who would you put as the signatory ? ( the shop name / registration / owners name / or all of the above ?? ) ( what if a staff member took it away from shop... some grey area here )
 

Edwin Francis

Senior Member
Mar 24, 2006
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#3
Understand your concern. You are aware, I assume, that you are already the copyright holder of the image, or of any image you create. I doubt drawing up this agreement would 'increase' your copyright, so it seems pointless. With or without it, you would still have to take them to court if they infringe your rights.
Most people are averse to signing legal documents unless there's some benefit for them. Front counter staff would probably say no, so you might have to deal with the boss, who may think that your business is not worth the potential hassle :)
Also, any printer that got caught doing something like that can kiss his business goodbye.

PS. How about adding a copyright notice watermark?
 

Last edited:

JasonB

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Jun 2, 2009
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#4
Exactly as you thought.

Your friend sounds like the really gae kiang type.

If you ask them to sign they either going to get offended - afterall it's like insulting their business ethics, or they are going to laugh and snicker at you. Or even brand you 'award winning photographer of the year' behind your back.

Don't be scared lah!
 

daredevil123

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 25, 2005
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lil red dot
#5
No shop will sign any agreement. They rather not do your business if there is so much hassle. Printing companies have so many things to do to even bother ripping your pictures off. Most of them who do publishing have many stock images in their library anyway. And most printing shops do not do any sort of work that require stock images anyway. Most of them just print to order.

Btw, if you own the copyright of the work and can prove it, nothing other people do can take that copyright away from you.
 

catchlights

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Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
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www.foto-u.com
#6
they can buy images from stock libraries, it does not cost a lot of money.

If they want to use any images from the customers, all they need to do is ASK, I'm sure many people will very happy to let them use as showcasing, don't have to steal at all.
 

edutilos-

Senior Member
Dec 28, 2010
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#7
My friend cautioned me that it's better to ask the shop to sign some kind of form to say that I'm the copyright owner of that image, in case the shop chooses to use it without my permission in future.
If they do that, they will have to prove ownership of the image, or that you have given them permission.

I can't see how getting their services to make the print is going to amount to any of that? Think your friend is thinking too much.
 

Andreq

Deregistered
Jul 12, 2007
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#8
After much thought and based on all the advice here, I think yes, I'd go ahead to print anyway without the "contract". I cam imagine they'll be offended! (After insulting me maybe?)

Maybe unless I'm some super celeb photographer who is well known to make thousands from selling photos. :)

But honestly, even if these people ever use our photos, we might not know it. These printing companies do sell "ready made" picture enlargements for those who are interested. But if they are a reputable company, I doubt they will resort to selling our images without permission. Not worth the risk I think.
 

allenleonhart

Deregistered
Sep 17, 2008
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#9
chances are they won't. especially if its a reputable printing shop. perhaps for shop deco at most? apart from that, probably not.

imagine the scandal and bad press if they do:) they can be put out of business in no time if discovered.
 

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