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A warning for Student Photogs (pros please chime in)

For those of you that are considering participating in the Apple Insomnia shootout…. READ THE FINE PRINT!… Here is a grab from the contract you are agreeing to if you shoot it…

Each entrant agrees and grants Apple Inc. permission to make available and display/perform and otherwise distribute entrants’ names and photo submission in all media in perpetuity without compensation.

You are giving up your photo rights to the submitted photos FOREVER

I may be being anal, but for me, I will never sign a contract that has that language in it, that is just my opinion. You could make an image that day that ends up being worth far more to you in the long run than any free laptop…

Any input from the pros out there on this topic?

by Brian L Frank at 2007-04-24 23:33:32 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) San Francisco, California , United States | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Hey Brian,

Pro, student, semi-pro, whatever. That’s a rights-grab. EVERYONE needs to read contracts carefully and be prepared to walk away when something smells funny. Thanks for the heads-up.


by Art Rothfuss I I I | 24 Apr 2007 23:04 | Rochester, NY, United States | | Report spam→
I have recieved emails from pros saying that they arent actually taking the copyright… am i wrong? please point it out if I am and why… (i am still learning this contract stuff, they sure dont teach it at school) it just seems to me that the wording says that they own your stuff if you submit… no?

by Brian L Frank | 24 Apr 2007 23:04 | San Francisco, California, United States | | Report spam→
Good catch Brian, I’ll be sure to let my classmates at WKU know.


by P. Money | 24 Apr 2007 23:04 | Bowling Green, KY, United States | | Report spam→
It’s probably nonexclusive meaning you own the copyright but grant them permission of use.

Thereby you can still license your images to other publications and still make money off of them.

You just won’t receive compensation from Apple.

It’s becoming more common these days (especially for contests),

but it’s still kinda shady in my opinion.

by P. Money | 25 Apr 2007 00:04 | Bowling Green, KY, United States | | Report spam→
But if you want to re-sale to other companies/agencies, then apple will own some rights of publishing FOREVER (not to mention, who knows if they use the image to sell their new macbook without paying you for the ad) so who would want to buy it if they cant have some form of temporary exclusivety rights… right?

by Brian L Frank | 25 Apr 2007 00:04 | San Francisco, California, United States | | Report spam→
what’s more, they can ALL photos submitted, not just the winner’s… so they can use whatever they want to and not even have to give some poor kid a computer… sounds like a deal to me!

by Narayan Mahon | 25 Apr 2007 00:04 | Syracuse, New York, United States | | Report spam→
That’s evil. But not as evil as this…

“Please note that donations will not be returned, and are for public
presentation and use. Photographs and written materials will be accessioned
by the XXXXXXX archives with donor credit. Your voluntary donation gives and
assigns to XXXXXX legal title, property right, and all rights of copyright
which you have in them. Submitted materials will be made available for
museum research, education, and production purposes on an unrestricted

by Edward Cheng | 25 Apr 2007 14:04 | New York, United States | | Report spam→
Since Ron and Ami are jurors, might be interesting to get their input as well. :))

good luck to those who enter…


by [former member] | 25 Apr 2007 15:04 | toronto, Canada | | Report spam→
I hate to be a contrarian, and hate I do it when the rights are not explained better, but this language means (by my own interpretation) that the entrant retain the copyright and that the rights are non-exclusive. That means that an entrant continues to own all of the rights in the entered photo and can use it or license it anywhere.

The reason Apple needs to have all-media rights is that, when they start down this kind of a project, the resulting promotion of the photo show can go anywhere. These kinds of contests are, let’s face it, for newer photogs to get exposure, and the more media the photos are exposed to, the better result for you.

That would be true even if the entrant wasn’t the winner and Apple used the losing photos. One couls always cite that shot as a compelling example of third party selection of your work — saying “look at this – Apple is using it.”

Notwithstanding, I think it MOST unlikely that Apple will use any of the non-winning shots.

So flame me if you wish, but I don’t really find this as unfair when you consider all the circumstances.

by [former member] | 26 Apr 2007 00:04 | Washington, DC, United States | | Report spam→
Another shitty thing…to exploit student photogs and anybody who aplies…hehehe
Love the BIG companys!!!!Big companys, Grae ideas…

Insomnia Photo Festival
Turn 24 hours of insanity into 15 minutes of fame.

One concept. One photo. One insane day.
(And almost NO wrights they sould say….)

The first ever Insomnia Photo Festival challenges you to shoot the perfect picture in just one day. On Friday, April 27 at 5 p.m. Eastern (2 p.m. Pacific), we will post a photography assignment for you to complete. From that time, you will have 24 hours to finish and submit your ideal image.

After the entries are posted to our web gallery, we will make them available for the public to view and rate. The top 25 highest rated photos through May 16, 2007, will then be judged by our panel of experts.

We will designate winners in two categories: the audience’s choice and the judges’ choice. Grand prize winning photographers will receive a 15" MacBook Pro, a copy of Aperture, and an 80GB iPod for their portable portfolio.*
Blablabla..blabla…blablabla…Grand Pize!!!!! 15" (sorry… just a 15") MacBook Pro…LOL

It really reminds me to the FUJI DAY PHOTO in Barcelona, for the “LA MERCE” celebrations….
Any more ideas out there to exploit more young people? To make more “free use” photographic material
The worse…for sure…Thousands of participants…..pants…pants,,, pants down guys..

I Hate this!!!
Sorry to tell you this Neal…but…Do you really think this is fair?? For young guys??
Maybe from your age its easy to say…
(Don t take it personally..)


by Alain Bañon | 26 Apr 2007 00:04 | Higuey, Dominican Republic | | Report spam→
Thanks for the flip-side of the coin Neal…

I have recieved emails from photogs and editors that I respect highly, after posting this thread, and they have come down on both sides of the fence, meaning that there is no easy answer…

I guess its a judgement call.

And my judgement still tells me that it is more important to stand on the principle that (especially as a freelancer) I am the only one who owns un-ending rights to my photos, as this will likely be all that I have to show one day for my years of underpayed work.

To me it is different if you have a contract with an employer and they are providing you with steady employment, and insurance. But to ever give somebody the right to use my images FOREVER, without that sort of aggreement, is something I cant stomach, for contests or newspapers.

I understand that there are students out there who want a shot at the exposure, and more power to you. But I have to ask where we draw the line. If we start getting used to this type of thing as students, arent we setting ourselves up to do the same thing as professionals?

by Brian L Frank | 26 Apr 2007 00:04 | San Francisco, California, United States | | Report spam→
Why enter into contests?

Not to sound like the rebel here, but who needs that ego trip?

by [former member] | 26 Apr 2007 01:04 | | Report spam→
Reading this has got me thinking ( a little at least). I see both sides of this. It sucks to give up rights. But if this contest was not getting you out to shoot the assignment that they post, you would never create those images. (or would you?) It is not like they are asking for one of the images from your best of file, like a lot of other contest do. This time you are going out to make the image for this contest. So does that make it better or fair? That I am not really sure about, but one thing I am sure about, they will not be short of entrants. Just like there are people out there selling stock photos for $1! With everyone and their digital cameras it is no longer an elite game, it is now a game for the masses. Look at flicker. Most of those people are just clicking and sharing for fun. They would love that little ego boost. (as would I probably)

by Radhanatha Jakupko | 26 Apr 2007 01:04 | | Report spam→
gentlemen like most things in life, its a question of choice. when a big company organises something that size “its not a free movie ticket”. there is something in it for them and they have rightly spelt it out. If you feel differently… and of course you are entittled to your sentiments.. leave it alone. Would you rather take your camera for walk and make a pulitzer winner which no one knows about or would rather do it for company that pays you a dime and shout from the rooftops about it?. In this part of the world its a daily struggle to convince publishers photos are not text breakers and they should be paid decently for it. As a photojournalism lecturer in Nairobi, I would tell my students to go for it. The knockdown effects are in your favour!

by [former member] | 26 Apr 2007 06:04 | Nairobi, Kenya | | Report spam→
hey george – tell your editors that bad writing is far easier to correct than bad photography :o)

seems like apple could build a strong library of work in an instant here.

good luck to the students. i’ve yet to enter a competition… winning commissions is not dissimilar i’d imagine.

by david bowen | 26 Apr 2007 14:04 | nottingham, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
Hello everyone,

Please pay attention to the Official Rules of the “Microsoft Future Pro Photographers Photography Contest.”

This is a Rights Grab Scheme, to build a library of images without paying the photographers.

“All Entries become the property of Sponsor and Administrators and will not be returned.

By submitting your Entry, you grant Sponsor and Administrators an irrevocable royalty-free, worldwide right, in all media (now known or later developed) to use, publish, alter or otherwise exploit your Entry.

You hereby forever release the Sponsor and Administrators from any and all claims you might have in connection with their use and exhibit of your Entry as set forth above.

You also agree to sign any necessary documentation to effectuate that license and release.

If you do not want to grant Sponsor and Administrators the foregoing, please do not enter the Contest.”


by Ion Etxebarria | 08 May 2007 00:05 | Montreal, Christmas Island | | Report spam→

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Brian L Frank, Photojournalist Brian L Frank
San Francisco , United States ( SFO )
Art Rothfuss I I I, Photographer/Dad Art Rothfuss I I I
Rochester, Ny , United States ( ROC )
P. Money, Creative & Futurist P. Money
Creative & Futurist
(See That Which Cannot Be Seen)
[undisclosed location].
Narayan Mahon, Photographer Narayan Mahon
Madison, Wisconsin , United States
Edward Cheng, Traveler-Photographer Edward Cheng
New York , United States ( EWR )
Alain Bañon, Freelance photographer Alain Bañon
Freelance photographer
Higuey , Dominican Republic
Radhanatha Jakupko, Photographer Radhanatha Jakupko
Alachua , United States ( GNV )
david bowen, photographer / shoe-maker david bowen
photographer / shoe-maker
(bophoto for a better life)
Florø , Norway
Ion Etxebarria, Photographer Ion Etxebarria
Montréal , Christmas Island


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