View Full Version : Photography Related News

02-19-2011, 01:46 AM
I think the article I'm posting below is more of a photography related topic rather than political.. so I'm creating this thread for a place for anything related to photography in the news. I've been following PDN on twitter and I've come across some interesting stuff.

Fair Fee for Photo of Arizona Shooting Victim? Or Price Gouging?

The Arizona Republic is reporting that Tucson photographer Jon Wolf and his attorney, Ed Greenberg of New York, demanded $125,000 from the newspaper’s owner for unauthorized use of Wolf’s image of Chrstina-Taylor Green.

Green was the nine-year-old girl killed in Tucson on January 8 when a gunman opened fire on Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords at a supermarket. Numerous media outlets, including The Arizona Republic, published Wolf’s portraits of Green without permission.

An attorney for Gannett Co., which owns The Arizona Republic, says in the newspaper’s report that Gannett “respects intellectual property” and will pay a “standard licensing fee” for its use of the photo. The Gannett attorney doesn’t specify what that fee will be, but says it will be “far shy” of $125,000.

Wolf and Greenberg have been taking a beating in the Tucson media for their efforts to collect fees from media outlets all over the country that used Wolf’s image without permission.

A week ago, Greenberg told PDN he believed that the unauthorized use of Wolf’s images by media outlets around the country was “the most expansive infringement of a photographer’s copyright in history by far.” He was poised to file suit in federal court on Wolf’s behalf to force the Associated Press, The New York Times, AOL, The Wall Street Journal and a number of other media outlets to pay up. But in the face of harsh criticism–including a public dressing down from Christina-Taylor Green’s family–Wolf announced on his blog earlier this week that he wouldn’t file suit just yet.

Wolf is feeling the backlash on Facebook. More than 1,200 people have endorsed a call on the social networking site for a boycott of his business.

Tucson’s ABC affiliate, KGUN, has aired several reports which have helped stoke public sentiment against Wolf and Greenberg. The station has described Greenberg as the New York attorney Wolf hired “to shake money out of some media outlets.”

The station has also depicted Greenberg and Wolf as being in a rush to profit from the photo by registering copyright the first business day after the shootings took place, and by getting the Green family to sign a release on that same day to license the photo to the media.

Source (http://pdnpulse.com/2011/02/fair-fee-for-arizona-shooting-victim-photo-or-price-gouging.html)

Where do you guys stand on this? It's quite a touchy subject.

In my opinion (which I doubt will be a popular one!), Wolf deserves payment for his work. Simple as that.Regardless of content, photographers deserve payment for the services they provide. I understand that people are thinking that this man is trying to profit off the horrific tragedy of a child, but its not as if he was some causal bystander with a camera - trying to make a quick buck. He's a professional photographer trying to make a living, on assignment to provide a service to news outlets. He also put his life at risk in order to take these images for the news. I think if you were to take a stance that it is wrong of him to seek payment - any type of photography where the subject is suffering, dead, etc. (ex. war photography, etc.) could fall under this umbrella. I could go on and on - but one thought that also popped into my head was, how does Wolf plan on spending the money? Not like it particularly matters, but what if he were going to donate it to charity?

After I wrote the majority of the above I decided to find his website and found the following blog postings.

February 14, 2011

Regarding Christina Green's portrait...
For those who have been following the coverage of the story of Christina Green's portrait, the following was released to media outlets today.
My actions regarding this matter have been misunderstood and sadly mischaracterized. My intent from the beginning always has been to use the proceeds from my creative work to make a charitable donation in Christina Green’s memory. I sought and received the Green family’s approval to do so. At no time did I intend to profit personally from this tragedy. As a result of the mischaracterizations in the news coverage and the resulting community outcry, and in the hope of saving the Green family from further association with this matter, I have chosen to halt filing legal action in the hopes of reaching negotiated settlements with those that have used this image. I will turn the proceeds collected to date over to a charity in Christina’s honor. I truly and deeply regret the additional distress this matter has placed on the Green family, and I apologize for that. - Jon Wolf

January 13, 2011

The Green Family
When I met the Green family about a year ago, I was touched by the joy that surrounded them. They were a happy family, in love with each other, and that love & closeness is what shines through in their portraits. Especially touching was Dallas’ fondness for his little sister Christina and her affection for him in return.

Into that joy, tragedy has fallen. On January 8, 2011, Christina, a bright and beautiful child became the face of what is being called the Tragedy in Tucson when a gunman opened fire at a Congress on Your Corner event, severely wounding Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 13 other people, and killing six including nine-year-old Christina.

I can’t imagine the pain that the Green family is now enduring. I can only hold my own two daughters tight and pray for the Green's healing and for the healing of our community.

02-28-2011, 04:26 PM
Yeah, I don't give a damn what his plans are for the money -- he could be planning on spending it on crack whores and video games for all I care. Whatever -- pay the man. I hope he sues the pants off everybody who stole his work.

Forget about HIS motives. Forget about HIS actions. Forget about HIS plans for any money received. What the hell makes anyone think they're entitled to steal this man's work and use it for their own profits? They should all be ashamed of themselves and consider $125,000 to be a bargain.

02-28-2011, 04:30 PM
He absolutely should be paid no matter what he plans to do with the money. I'm constantly amazed by the disregard people (including those who work in publishing and advertising and who should 100% know better) show for intellectual property, particularly photography. It's like a fucking free-for-all - if you find it on the internet, you can use it! I actually had someone say to me once, "If it's on the internet, it is considered public domain. So of course I can use this image."

02-28-2011, 05:58 PM
Forget about HIS motives. Forget about HIS actions. Forget about HIS plans for any money received. What the hell makes anyone think they're entitled to steal this man's work and use it for their own profits? They should all be ashamed of themselves and consider $125,000 to be a bargain.This pretty much says it all.

02-28-2011, 06:02 PM
Photographing cows or other farm scenery could land you in jail under Senate bill (http://fltrib.com/photographing-cows-or-other-farm-scenery-could-land-you-jail-under-senate-bill)

Taking photographs from the roadside of a sunrise over hay bales near the Suwannee River, horses grazing near Ocala or sunset over citrus groves along the Indian River could land you in jail under a Senate bill filed Monday.

SB 1246 by Sen. Jim Norman, R-Tampa, would make it a first-degree felony to photograph a farm without first obtaining written permission from the owner. A farm is defined as any land "cultivated for the purpose of agricultural production, the raising and breeding of domestic animals or the storage of a commodity."

Wonder how far THIS bill will get.