Patricia Davies Boyce Photography
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Lessons in Licensing

While googling my name recently, my dearest mother happened upon a website selling a framed print of a photo I'd taken earlier this year. So the next time we saw each other, she casually asked me about it. This was the first I'd heard about any of my photos being for sale. So I went about googling myself (something I clearly should do more often), and sure enough - this is what I discovered:

Yes, for a mere $280, you can own a framed print by yours truly. Or if you've got $3,468 lying around - you can get yourself a jumbo 55 x 33.3 version. (Don't do that though).

I was initially very confused as to how a website I'd never heard of (Photato - like photo and potato combined) could be selling one of my photos as a print without my knowledge. It didn't take me long to remember using a Creative Commons license on many of my Flickr photos in the past. I found the photo on my Flickr account and yes, it had a Creative Commons Attribution license. At the time I used this license, I'd done my research and was aware that it would mean anyone was free to use the photo in whatever way they pleased with the only requirement being they credit me for the original work. I'd also known about the Commercial/Non-Commercial versions of this license. I just hadn't anticipated anyone actually using the photo, and certainly not in this way.

I mean - to date, this photo has only been viewed 185 times. One of those views apparently by some snake of a human who scours Flickr for decent images with a CC license so they can turn a profit and not pay the artist.

So, I've learned my lesson and no longer use CC licensing. As far as I've been able to determine, the photo potato site can still legally sell the photo even if I've since changed the license. If you're reading this and know otherwise - I'd certainly like to hear from you.

If you're reading this and don't know what I'm talking about because you skimmed to this point - I'd like to hear from you too!

 

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