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I have a legal question

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  #1  
Old 02-25-2005, 10:20 AM
keepemcomin's Avatar
keepemcomin keepemcomin is offline
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I have a legal question

We got our pictures taken for the church directory and they came out really well. I have an adorable picture of our two kids, ages 24 months and 13 months. They were taken by Olan Mills and have the mark on the bottom left-hand corner of the picture. I was wondering if it would be illegal or wrong of me to post the picture here and let you all have a go at it. I thought it would make a cute Creative Interpretations post. It wouldn't be for money and I'm not planning on distributing your results so I thought it would be okay, but I wanted to make sure first.

Also, I hope I chose the right forum to post this in. Thanks!
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Old 02-25-2005, 10:31 AM
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kiska kiska is offline
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Hi! I think it would be a no-no. You would need permission since Olan Mills owns the original photo. Not sure,tho. I don't touch anything recent that has a photographers' name on front or back.
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Old 02-25-2005, 02:12 PM
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DannyRaphael DannyRaphael is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiska
Hi! I think it would be a no-no. You would need permission since Olan Mills owns the original photo. Not sure,tho. I don't touch anything recent that has a photographers' name on front or back.
Agreed. Although you may own the photos, you don't own the rights to them. Permission from OM would be the right approach. Or take pics with your own camera. We can replace backgrounds!

Thanks for asking...

~Danny~
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Old 02-26-2005, 06:13 AM
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terivon terivon is offline
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They were taken by Olan Mills and have the mark on the bottom left-hand corner of the picture. I was wondering if it would be illegal or wrong of me to post the picture here and let you all have a go at it.

Hi there! Well, having had experience trying to obtain permission from Olan Mills for restoration work in the past, let me say now it's probably not going to happen. Whenever someone submits a photograph to me to restore, I always ALWAYS try to locate the original photographer and obtain permissions first. In fairness, the vast majority of the photographs I've worked on are quite old, and don't qualify for your question. But occassionally I get one that's younger.

Prime example, I contacted a photo studio in the Chicago region to verify or authenticate a photographer's mark, and found that the gentleman who now runs the business is the grandson of the man who originally took the photograph. He was suprised that I bothered to contact him, and readily gave me permission, as well as asked for a copy of the work, as the family no longer had examples of his Grandfather's work from that time period.

The copyright law on older photographs is about as clear as mud, to some degree. My personal rule of thumb is any photograph professionally taken and printed after 1925 requires an attempt to verify the photographer and if still in business, permissions obtained. Is the photographer still living? Seriously doubtful, but in many cases such as this one, the photo studio is or was family run. Only in about five percent of the cases do I even find them still in business, but at least, I try. I have a deep respect for the photographers who took these old photographs. I realize that my chosen date is earlier than what is required to get photo's reproduced at most places, but that's my rule and I'm sticking to it.

Olan Mills is however, very difficult to deal with when it comes to repairing and/or replacing image data for the purpose of restoring a photograph. It's a shame really, as a restored image of their work, with the logo intact, allows years of enjoyment and advertisement for their business. Some people simply Remove the Olan Mills logo via Photoshop, then work on it. I'd rather not battle the Ethics Faerie Godmother on this one. I won't do it.
Hope This helped..
Teri
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Old 02-26-2005, 07:16 AM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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"Olan Mills takes pride in providing special portrait services for many of our customers. In the event we cannot fulfill a specific need, Olan Mills may provide a copyright release to our customers. The release will allow you to reproduce a copyrighted Olan Mills portrait.

You may obtain a copyright release if (Check one):

You need copies of a portrait that is over two years old.
A portrait product is needed that Olan Mills cannot provide
A portrait size is needed for which a reasonable substitute cannot be provided by Olan Mills

Please complete the form below to request your release on-line. There is a $10.00 non-refundable processing fee. Payment will need to be made upon request by credit card. You will receive written notification by mail within 4 to 5 business days. Or, if you wish, provide your fax number for a speedier response."
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Old 02-26-2005, 07:59 AM
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Question of Ethics

Terivon's post holds a lot of weight with me. I've given most of my work away over the years, but now that I've begun to sell images I feel 'ripped off' if some uses anything of mine without asking. I'm sensitive to copying or reworking another pro's work. It's a matter of ethics to me. I think Terivon puts in much more eloquently.
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Old 03-01-2005, 04:57 PM
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terivon terivon is offline
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Doug Nelson said: "Olan Mills takes pride in providing special portrait services for many of our customers. In the event we cannot fulfill a specific need, Olan Mills may provide a copyright release to our customers. The release will allow you to reproduce a copyrighted Olan Mills portrait...."

Well now Doug, I certainly appreciate that information! I certainly wish I had this information the last time someone asked me to work on an Olan Mills image, and now find I have a few phone calls to make on the last several who approached me. I for one, thank you.

It used to be, and of course I'm dating myself here, that the answer was always no. A good lesson here for me specifically, is to update my research.

Thank you again for proving how valuable the Retouchpro resource is.
Warm Regards,
Teri
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Old 03-01-2005, 05:27 PM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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I moved this over to Work/Jobs, not because it was posted inappropriately, but because it might help others there.
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