This post hopefully touches on some of the issues that i’d originally intended when starting yesterday’s post – but I made all new photographic/screenshot images today. And not so bleak, topically… content warning: this post may contain errors / errors of judgement.
In mention or showing of any product or organisation during this post (or any previous/later post), I am not endorsing, nor endorsed by, nor implying any association therewith or thereby – other than I am a service-user or customer and happen to have these products at/to hand and hereby making creative use of such things in my amateur content creation attempts. i blog for my own pleasure. i make my (occasional) ‘art at my leisure’ while unable to do anything more meaningful with my time. i have no energy to get off my arse and do anything much else at all. So.
I’m breaking with convention again. By adding Bibliography/reading links to the front-end of my post in case you need or want to skip off. Hey, if you follow by email, you get this much without even visiting the whole rambling article…
I’m glad I took ‘short’ out of the title, but no way I intended so many words! Time to close? Thanks for reading. If you made it this far you deserve reward more than thanks 🙂 So. You might not wish to read fully here at my post. Honestly, i don’t mind. I write mainly for my own enjoyment and to challenge myself and practise some hopeful skill retention/extension and wind around my daft ideas. (You won’t miss much by not seeing other images: bathroom window sill; flush-button-selfie; blizzard; skywatching; not quite assemblage as just happens to be (post-buzz); getting-around-to-it (child-i) aka footsteps in the snow… y’see, or not… and apologies for using that phrase, realising not everyone will and the potential need to make posts more adaptive for the visually-impaired…)
Read around to find out more about complexities of image use and see if anything surprises you. I found plenty I needed to be aware of from http://wiki.gettyimages.com/locations-general/ and other numerous entries at that site;
also pixabay has a blog where i found this very informative article that deserves more prominence on their website: https://pixabay.com/en/blog/posts/public-domain-images-what-is-allowed-and-what-is-4/
you can also check out online occurences of image files at tineye.com (reverse image searching, i only very recently learnt of this resource, unaware of any other).
Not in my wildest imagination would I have believed that innocently sharing personal photos (that you’ve snapped yourself with your own legally purchased camera) while enjoying (as best you can) both your own personal life and the creative freedoms that your blogging life might afford you… never would i have believed that there might be very serious and very expensive consequences eg. the potentially punative issues of trademark and copyright infringements levied by profiteering organisations when you are sharing your own images capturing an illustration of something personal. (Not that I’m currently experiencing any such problems, and hopefully will always be aware and careful enough to not encounter such hindrances even though I sometimes play at art-making using appropriative method while retrieving my paper and paints seems too much like hard work!)
And while there are loads of great coffee shots I might or might not have downloaded believing them to be CC0 images… well, if any of them CC0 images contain subject matter that are objects with Registered Trademarks or the object/environment is ‘unique by design’, the owner of the intellectual property rights is not only the photographer but the owner of the design-rights of objects contained in the subject matter could object and take action to whatever extent may be legally obtainable – even though you are only a personal non-commercial blogger/social media user/whatever… So, although CC0 image sharing sites appear to screen users file submissions, iPR-ownership could still become a problem to bear in mind when publishing personal content in good faith.
So I chose to mock something up myself. In sharing the screenshot of my photograph of my cup of coffee, technically being a mug: a commercially designed and manufactured product, (assumed) in association with the BBC but potentially an unofficial ‘fake’ consumer product, but anyway, i decided to take a screenshot instead of uploading the raw photo. In doing so I might still have offended both the product manufacturer (especially by assuming it could even be an unofficial ‘fake’ – as if that ever happens!) and the photo software programs’ intellectual property rights (MS) in my personal abandonment too, perhaps. Does the software program have feelings to offend? (And in the context of my post I would assert Fair Use.)
What about my rights as an individual to enjoy creativity and online interactions, content creation etc.? Am I ever to be not allowed until I make my own living…? I sometimes feel there is an elitist weight of oppressive thought out there in the wildernesses of civilised life that would suggest ‘my sort of people’ should not have access to internet ‘priveleges’… I guess that’s divergence again…!
Or… more / back to the point: What about if, just as an example, I respond to a blogging photo prompt challenge that I can’t resist to respond to, to ‘show your (my) bathroom windowsill’…?
I can hardly believe that there might be even the tiniest possibility of ‘brand infringement’ and ‘intellectual property rights theft’ from posting a photo anything like the one above in such an exemplary manner (meaning by way of example, not as something special). Yet apparently there could be. And the wealthier you are, the more expensive and luscious the products you buy and show off through your normal everyday-type internet uses, the more likely you could be prohibited from sharing such visual imagery from your personal life and feel the pinch of both your creativity being impeded and financially robbed when you are also potentially FINED(!) Not that most people out there are showing their bathroom windowsills or engaging in such toilet humour as I might share here or there.
By the way, i’d never show YOUR anything so personal, usually, unless it seemed very appropriate and reasonable to do so – and then, if used impulsively without asking and if assuming permission until a mutually convenient time to seek potential objection then I’d let you know and offer to remove whatever it is if you have any need for me to do so – unless of course it was actually YOUR bathroom windowsill in MY photo or something so personal or personally created etc etc and then I’d definitely ask you first – even if it is non-identifying in amongst the gazillions of gems to be found in the sticky-pernickety-of-the-world-wide-web (if it were, say, your garden gate, your door, your window, your handbag on a chair etc. I just wouldn’t be taking a photo, whether I know you or not. Not all is fair game.
But what if, exactly as it happened to be, not arranged specially for the purpose of the photograph, all as is, the roll-on company, per example, don’t object to their brand product showing in MY bathroom photo, – even though I’m definitely NOT a good photographer – … but what if MY shabby net curtains turn out to be super-duper-design and I’m just ignorant of the fact and one o’them readers/viewers out there recognises the pattern and knows the manufacturer’s great-grandson and says ‘hey! go put a STOP to THIS!’
Did you know…?
You could be prevented from publishing a photograph of yourself wearing any of the clothes, shoes, whatever adornment you own yourself if the owner of the intellectual property rights to the design of your clothes/adornments disallows or objects to your using your own right to publish such personal photographs! Ok, that may seem unlikely, but it could be possible. I guess they have to learn of your use of such image first.
In all kinds of circumstance, there MIGHT be a need to SEEK PERMISSION first in the hope of obtaining it. And in all kinds of circumstance there might be Fair Use that might seem to contradict what appear to be certain hard and fast rules.
Did you know…?
As an amateur personal blogger, I would NOT have known that ‘for editorial purposes’ includes producing content on a personal blog as a hobbyist.
And of course, as soon as you are blogging professionally you are a commercial user and ensuring adherence to all applicable laws and regulatory standards is hopefully not as complex as it sounds – and with at least some similarity enough to respect of copyright as a personal user – but such issues would then be even more critical.
Bug-bare to let go at this juncture: Sincerely no offence intended to any of my blogging neighbours whether currently amateur/pro personal/premium et al… I have to hope that paying for Personal Premium Plan does not imply professional commercial blogging, because I still want full facilities for individual content sharing like audio and video and so will upgrade here too if ever I can afford it enough. And what if using a Personal Premium Plan automatically implies ‘commercial use. And I might actually want to try and use adwords to see if that could earn me a very small discount off the service charge … although I guess even that’s tiny enough to make the leap from ‘personal blog’ to ‘commercial blog” is it? but Gawd help me anyway if I have to take any return from adwords as a PayPal payment. I have no idea how any of it works and it’s like it’s ‘secret’ and you gotta suck-it-and-see to find out for yourself! Jump in and burn! Anyone with professional business activity and intention would be selecting the ‘business plan’ option! Perhaps not from scratch, but as a creative artist/writer – albeit amateur aspiring to professional standards, believe it or not – the Personal Premium Plan with WordPress.com no longer has the kit that I would expect to need were I to revamp my vague business plan ever awaiting my return to health. The conventional ways promoted of transforming your blogfor business use don’t match with my mediocre knowledges of business implementation and management and are both (a) not appropriate in my estimation of English/British culture and (b) possibly infringing English Law and potentially encouraging criminality. What WordPress call ‘Simple Payments’ would add such complexity to my life to use – i tried using PayPal once upon a time and didn’t like it at all. Moneylaundering is reputed to be rife with such payment services as are currently offered and I choose not to partake in that type of tax-avoidance economy – and (not meaning my blogging platform-provider of course while i write) especially while it’s such a rip-off business that provides access to an alternative currency exchange system and customer services are impossible and expensive to reach. Oops, added my off-topic beef again.
Did you know…?
That in England, privacy laws have ALWAYS (in my lifetime) existed that clearly state it is NOT ok to take anyone’s photo or to film them without their knowledge and consent. So any location where filming and documentary photography might be taking place has to have clear notices displayed, even security CCTV systems, also governed by privacy laws stating that you may only capture images showing your own property and nothing beyond the boundary – so no people, not even as they pass by your house walking past on the street etc.)
Hey, today we had a blizzard!
The blizzard didn’t last very long, disappointingly, but at least I got out in it.
Did you know…?
In England, and probably many other places in the world(?), you MUST be very careful about photographing in residential areas and might be breaking the Law if you were to publish photos you’ve taken – even if you consider a street a public place. you must be very respectful of and for people’s privacy. That might even include a very general photograph of place. Even showing (as in publishing online) a photo containing a legible car registration number is a criminal offence (unless the car is your own), at least it used to be (fact-checking needed, assumed to remain current). You may not publish (or usually should not take) photos showing in recognisable ways the faces of individuals even when they’re among a crowd, even in a public place. A recognisable person in English law does not mean someone who is famous, it means the recognisable likeness of an actual person. You also may not draw, paint, nor make in any way a person’s recognisable or identifiable likeness without their permission. These are ground rules and cultural foundation I learnt during childhood.
There are all kinds of situations when to legally be permitted to take photographs or moving-image-footage you must be registered with the National Press Association. It has always been a serious criminal offence to photograph a police officer, or a postal delivery person and so on. These are laws and cultural ‘norms’ that I have always been aware of in my lifetime, ever since being allowed to borrow use of a camera as a child. Naturally, that didn’t happen very often as use of family and day-out photography needing to be rationed because of the cost of anologue film and developing.
Of course, the police in England can confiscate your phone or camera if you are out taking photos without due regard for the law and people’s privacy. It’s always been like that. It isn’t a new ‘oppression’, although these days it sometimes assists the police and authorities when individuals in public situations have instinctively used their technology to capture documentary evidence, but the ‘originator’ has no legal right to ownership of the footage, if/when it contravenes that pre-established Law.
I stood on my front yard to take that #skywatch photo (blizzard scene) and don’t believe any of my neighbours have any reason to object to my publishing this photo – but I could be in error of a fact I am not yet aware of. I have had heard small whisper of some who perhaps prefer I am not to stand in my street or garden taking #skywatch photos! I don’t get round to posting most of the sky-snaps that i take and they’re primarily for my own enjoyment. I will not be told I may not. Perhaps even ‘on pain of death’ – in this context meaning ‘it means so much to me I might even be prepared to die to uphold my right…’. Stupid, i know. There is very little that I am able to do for a hobby and I’m not always well enough to go outside my own door to record the sky with my point-and-snap low-resolution camera and definitely not yet to take myself away elsewhere for a change to play with my point-and-snap-gadget AND while I am interested in photography known as ‘essays in alienation’ whereby the human figure is rarely seen in the context of any photo and would love to go out and play elsewhere I would probably have other things I would rather be doing with any energy I might ever have to leave the house with… I enjoy the notion (and ritual) of photographing the public surveillance camera that stands nearby my house in a ‘watching you watching us’ kind of way. Crazy that people can be so worried to see a resident outside with a camera when almost everyone has super-resolution mobile phones with which they can take snapshots and video footage quite covertly / surreptitiously and while we all live in a high-surveillance area – obviously, with Nottingham being so well-known historically as a region of hoodlums, (the biggest one being the Sheriff of Nottingham, historically, thus needing the mythical figure of Robin and the actual champion of justice the city’s legend usurps coming all the way from around about York and the Dales and so forth…) so… after another aside…
Here’s another of my #skywatch photos from today. I don’t always take them daily, due to my health issues. This one was taken shortly after coming inside during the short-lived blizzard. It’s a shame we so rarely have real decent snowfall in this country. I love snow! Incidentally, other parts of the UK might be having more extreme wintry conditions. I’m still waiting (longing) to wake up to a twelve foot high snowdrift outside my house, like the one time I’ve ever heard of that happening in England, about the year ninety-fifty-something. “Always keep a spade indoors!” I was very impacted by that story, whoever it was who was telling me such things at the time of being so small.
I took the above snapshot from my bathroom window (on a camera with no big zoom capability to be sure, not that i have a better one yet but when I do i’d be super careful with it and not be trying to hold and operate the shutter with my hands hanging out the top-light window… nor pointing it anywhere near anyone else’s houses!) Yet if those distant neighbours wished to pursue, or more to the point were able to prove reasonable grounds, I could be prevented by Law from pursuing this simple hobby. Hopefully that would never occur. I already have legally enshrined rights to the enjoyment of my private life within the context of my everyday home life. So of course I would be careful for the privacy of others. Do unto others as you might wish for yourself.
And finally, not in my wildest imagination would I have ever believed that it would be so common as for deceased persons creative personal content to be deleted or removed from public view. Whether that’s for ‘privacy’ or to capitalise on publishing opportunities I have no idea.
But it’s one of the things that really worries me, that it might be possible that after I (eventually) die, any of my living relatives might prefer to have any or all of my online content deleted or removed from search engine results etc. Even if it embarasses them, or if they know I have been embarassing myself by what I post online, I would be furious with them – if a dead person were to have any way of knowing and feeling anything, of course.
Time to close. Thanks again for reading (if you skimmed/skipped, I don’t blame you!) Cheers 🙂
PS. As well as ‘essays in alienation’ as a photography subject, i’m also interested in ‘appropriative art’ and ‘appropriative method’ within my ‘art of the everyday’. So my chance encounters with things like this that happen to become interesting at a certain point of noticing them, just as I happened to leave them, again, in MY bathroom…
and absolutely finally … acknowledging my childish self, my child-i, if/when possible:
I just have to be the first to make footprints on my own yard AND today i braved outdoors for a two-minute play – hooray! if only I’d washed, dressed and brushed my hair first! Now it’s almost suppertime and I lost myself to the distractions of making myself content (as in happy) with WordPress… so here’s another post i could or should really whittle down instead of all this whittling on and on…