If you are worried about infringement or your work has been copied and you want to take action.
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Post by JJOHNSON »


Please help if you can

I received a letter from Picrights demanding moneys for copyright infringement. They state that I used an image on my website for month. They demanded £465. The person didnt sound genuine on the phone and after reading comments online about Picrights I dismissed it. They have now sent a 2nd letter demanding £1285. I contacted them explaining that I am not an organisation which they thought i was and that I work through employment agencies on my own. I am furloughed and not worked since March. Ive also had a stroke to top it off.
Ive managed to do some research and found the image that they say is infringed has 2 people (photographers) claiming ownership. Ive found the same image with 2 different photographers laying claim to it. One is Ben Birchall and the other Matt Cardy. One is represented from PA Images and the other through Getty Images. So I don't know what's happening.

Answers required:

1. Is Picrights genuine.
2. So is Picrights wrong in not knowing who owns the image themselves and falsely claiming monies by not have the correct facts on ownership.
3. What are my options

Thank you
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Post by AndyJ »


Yes, PicRights is a genuine claims management company, although their main aim is extract as much money from alleged infringers as they think they can get away with, and they rely on people being scared by their tactics. Because they keep a percentage of everything they recover, and still need to make enough money for the photographers they represent, their claims rarely reflect anything like the market rate.

They may not be aware that copyright in this particular image is being claimed by two separate photographers. They should have informed you which photographer they represent. Clearly if there is genuine doubt about the correct copyright owner, they need to provide substantive proof that the person they represent is the owner of copyright before anything is settled.

As for how to arrange a fair settlement once you are satisfied that their claim has a genuine basis, please take a look at a couple of other threads on these forums: here and here (the second on deals with claims by Pixsy, which operates in the same way as PicRights, and the principles for dealing with such claims are the same no matter which organisation is behind them).
Advice or comment provided here is not and does not purport to be legal advice as defined by s.12 of Legal Services Act 2007
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