Friday, August 15, 2008

Giving away your photos for free - yay or nay?

recycled crochet flowerpot/basket
Ursprünglich hochgeladen von litchi7.
I'm pretty sure this has happened to everyone who has a flickr account... Yesterday was the third time someone approached me if they could use one of my pictures for commercial might have heard it before "...unfortunately we don't have a budget, but give you full credit." The first was a company selling dog insurances (!) - an insurance company that doesn't make any money? Come on! I didn't do it.
The second was the Berlin Schmap guide. I gave them the allowance to use my picture because I think it's a cool project.
Yesterday I got an inquiry for my little flower pot picture from, "...a green lifestyle website published by the Washington Post company. We are producing a new feature called "greenspy" about eco-friendly moments spotted in everyday life that we can share with our readers." While I think it's a worthy cause, I'm always inclined to ask: "Okay...don't YOU get paid either? Are all the people working for this website volunteers? Do you give your ad space away for free?" Because - let's face it - asking amateur photographers to give away their pictures saves these companies HUGE amounts of money. When I was still working as a keyaccount manager in an advertisement agency, I frequently had to buy photo rights and they don't come cheap. Rightly so, as they are the photographers source of income (which btw is also undermined when you give away your photos). I just makes me mad that they think they can butter me up with flattery to save themselves a couple of dollars.
I'd love to know what you think about this topic and if this has happenend to you (and how you reacted).

Have a great great sunny weekend!!!


Marion said...

oh, yes, it drives me mad. but what bugs me even mor are the people who blog my images whitout asking in advance or letting me know at all. eps. if my images are used in some context that i do not support... well, i know i shouldn't get so upset about this and just ignore them all.
when someone asks me if they can use onw of my images for free i tell them that i don't give them away for free and just send them the rates. most of them never come back. i mostly turn off almost all inquiries when i'm not paid but i've also made some exceptions but not without getting absolutely nothing in return. trading is a good thing sometimes...but not image against mentioning your name! i really get angry when someone thinks that mentioning your name more than generous and you should be thankful for being mentioned! that drives me really mad!

Anke said...

My thoughts exactly. I'd give a picture for free if it's a good cause, but other people making money with them - no way.