Copyrights and Trademarks

Thank God he copyrighted Nature before we did, otherwise we would not have anything to photograph.

I’ve recently submitted a few of photographs to a juried book. While reading the rules I stumbled on this (copying copyrights and trademarks section in its entirety):

So, what are some of the things that will get your photo rejected?

  • Logos and Trademarks– this is a big reason for rejections. It doesn’t have to be a picture of a logo, just the presence of a logo in the image. Some actual examples:
    • Photo of a person wearing a baseball cap with an MLB team logo on it.
    • A small Nike swoosh on a pair of running shoes. It was pretty small, but still easily seen.
    • A Ferrari decal.
    • A logo on a building that was discernable as a logo.
  • Copyrighted material – So often makes one say “you’re kidding”.
    • Art work – things like paintings, public art. Most likely we’ll reject it, but if you know that it’s OK you’ll have time to argue your case.
    • Buildings – lots of buildings are copyrighted and the rules are weird.
      • Space Needle – a photo of the Space Needle isn’t OK, but if it’s part of the skyline that’s ok.
      • Eiffel Tower at Night – a photo of the Eifel Tower is OK, but not of it at night when the lights are on it. The light display is copyrighted.
    • Private Property – images of private property are often copyrighted
    • Check http://www.istockphoto.com/tutorial_copyright_list.php
      • If something is not listed on this site, it is not a guarantee that it’s OK.

That’s right – “are you kidding me?”. Thank God he copyrighted Nature before we did, otherwise we would not have anything to photograph.

What is a photographer?

Who can be called a photographer – this has been discussed many times. Is it a person with a camera? Is it a person who composes a shot? Is it a person that produces a final print?

This question has got a whole new meaning for me recently. My son has grown up a bit – he is three and a half now. When we go to a park and I take photos there he wants to be a part of it. I setup a tripod, compose a shot and then let him release shutter by pressing a button on a camera or on remote release. He is really happy to do that. Later he proudly tells mom that he has taken a photo on dad’s camera.

So, does this mean that he is a photographer now and I infringe his copyright by publishing those photos on my website under my name? (I hope you don’t take this question too serious in this context.)

Composed by me, shot by my son: