Grand Theft Photo

The other night while uploading an interview and some new pictures to my music website I decided to add a disclaimer “All Photos Property of James Damion and Unite Fanzine.” I’ve been having a lot of people use my photos without permission or credit and it was beginning to piss me off. As I stated in an earlier blog post I’m not crazy about the idea of watermarking my images just yet. However I do find myself spending more and more time reminding  folks that if they are going to use one of my images as their profile badge they should at least give me a photo credit. Well, only hours after loading the update I found some kid took the picture off the site and used it for his Facebook profile picture. No credit or notification.  I was pissed, especially considering his bands shot was directly under the disclaimer. After confronting him I was still pissed and started watermarking everything. Pictures, records, my cat… You name is. I wanted my Watermarks to be large and obnoxious. I even tangled with watermarks that didn’t even have my name on them. “YourBandSucks”, “DicksDon’tCredit” and more insane ones too dirty to post here. Hey, I was pissed and Nasty Watermarking seemed like a better idea than spitting teeth. I’m calm and detached now and thinking that watermarking might be the next step for me. In the meantime…..



9 thoughts on “Grand Theft Photo

  1. My personal opinion is that you care way too much about a couple of your snaps from a hc show being used as a profile pic. Do you sell your images? Are these people profiting from them? You have spent the last week bitching that no one responds to your posts and people steal your pics for profile pictures. Its not like they are taking money out of your pocket, its just cred and pride, throw a non-obnoxious watermark on them and get over it dude.

    Are you sure you want to be doing this zine anymore, it seems like you only do it for your own vanity.

      1. LOL you get my point tho, who cares… just keep pushing the zine, 9 times out of 10 these people wont crop it out or anything and the images have legs, youll get misc hits off them knowwhatimean?

      2. I honestly enjoy sharing my work. It’s my love and passion. I love to see my stuff get out there and if someone thinks my pictures are good enough that they want to use it in that realm that’s beautiful. I just ask that if someone uses them be kind enough to let me know and give a photo credit so my name (and massive ego) is out there. As for Unite and the communication issue. It stems from conversations with other bloggers. When you put your heart and soul into something and you get nothing in the way of feedback it can be frustrating. There’s that thirst to be heard and get a response. Even if it’s someone telling you to stop taking yourself so damn seriously. Thanks Joe.

  2. I feel you James. It’s not about ego, it’s about giving credit where credit is due ,and spreading the word. If someone just takes your images then that is not leading anyone back to you, and as a pro photographer you need to be recognized to continually generate business. How would A band feel if their music was played on the radio or passed from one person to another without anyone ever saying the bands name ?

  3. Dave G is right, many of the blogs I frequent I learned about through watermarked pics, but Dave, snapping a live shot of a band is much different than the scenario you put out there.

    I still say, watermark em and be done with this shit, if someone snags your watermarked pic then sick the fans of United on them and we will make your point for you, scene love.

  4. There are 2 issues here, neither of them have anything to do with ego. Well, the first is slightly. Music photography is difficult. Anyone can take a picture, but not everyone can do it well. I personally think of my pictures as pieces of art.

    The second is name recognition. No one’s going to ask you to shoot their band if no one knows that you’re the one taking the pictures. It doesn’t matter whether the person stealing the photo is making money off of it (this whole issue could be solved with a 2 second “can I use your pic”). We’re not in it for the money- If someone supports a band by taking quality photos of them, they should return the favor.

    I started watermarking a while back. I used to think it was distracting, ect. but it saves a lot of frustration. I suggest doing it whenever possible (sometimes it’s not).

    1. It’s funny we’re talking about this now. Earlier today I found that an a site based in Asbury Park used one of my photos without notice or giving credit in promoting an upcoming show. It’s almost tolerable when it’s some kid or burnt out Punk who wouldn’t know license if he was pulled over with D.W.I. . This is a reputable site. I was spitting teeth.

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