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Copied Ebay Images - Appropriate Recompense

 
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mjn78
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:54 am    Post subject: Copied Ebay Images - Appropriate Recompense Reply with quote

Hello all,

I am looking for some advice on what may be considered reasonable fees to request of a business that has used my photographs on their Ebay listings.

The photographs in question are of items I sell, and of which I either photographed myself, or had a professional photograph for me.

The other business then started selling the same product, and used our images in their listings.

There are four listings in total, and 7 images used. Using the guidance from NUJ and looking at the 'commercial business' category I am coming up with a total of £5,250. Looking at previous threads, and using my own instinct I am concerned that, should this reach a court case, this may be seen as a little unreasonable. It does seem quite high. However this is the best guidance I can seem to find.

It's worth noting that I would never license use of my photographs. The only people interested in them would effectively be my competitors. Indeed, this businesses use of my photographs will have caused me a loss of sales.

I will also be adding on a percentage increase for flagrancy. They have removed (rather badly) from these photos my company name which was added as a watermark. They clearly knew that what they were doing is wrong.

Many thanks for any advice.

Mark.
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AndyJ
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2017 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mark,

£5,250 does sound quite high for using just 7 of your photographs (ie £750 each for an unspecified period of time), but the source you quote - the NUJ freelance fees - is a generally reliable and accepted guide. What's more, since you commissioned someone to photograph some of these products for you, you already have a further guide based on what he charged. A court would be likely to accept these figures as the basis for calculating ordinary damages. As for the matter of flagrancy, removing your identifying watermark would almost certainly count as evidence of flagrancy, but what we can't say is what kind of uplift to the basic damages a court might award for flagrancy. It would be very much based on all the facts in your particular case, and whether the other party could offer any mitigation.

If you haven't already seen it, here's a write-up from the 1709 blog about a fairly recent case in the IPEC Small Claims court (where claims, excluding costs, are capped at £10,000) which has certain similarities to your own.
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mjn78
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Andy,

Thanks for your response.

I'd read the case of the Manchester photographer a few days ago, I think from a link on this very site. Very interesting.

My initial plan was to tackle this issue myself, and to go through the IPEC small claims process if necessary (I have some limited experience of this, although not particularly pleasant and straightforward if I'm honest).

Given the sums involved I am now going to consider whether to obtain legal representation.

Mark.
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