Copying photographs and putting them on cakes.

'Is it legal', 'can I do this' type questions and discussions.
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Copying photographs and putting them on cakes.

Post by robwilko » Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:09 pm

I work in a large supermarket, and we offer a service where we can take a photograph, copy it onto a sheet of icing, and put onto a cake.

It is quite a popular service, and we often have to turn away customers who bring professional looking photographs on the grounds of copyright law.

Recently a new manager told a customer that if she were to make a copy of a professional photograph, bring that into the store, then we would be able to copy THAT copy, and make the cake for her. I pulled the manager up on this, telling him that copyright covers ALL copies of the original work. His argument was that the customer would be braking the law, not us, so it would be ok. I told him that as we are the company making money out of it we would come under fire.

I've tried looking at carious copyright issues, but if anyone with more knowledge would like to offer their thoughts, please do.
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Post by CopyrightAid » Fri Aug 24, 2007 11:14 am

I agree with you on this.

You are of course correct that any commercial reproduction without permission is an infringement, even if it's a copy of a copy.

Your manager make an interesting point, though not a very accurate nor moral one.
If the customer made a copy, and you didn't know about, and you copied that copy, you could I suppose claim that you were acting in good faith as you had no knowledge that the copy was in fact an infringement, but as is it your company that is making the commercial gain, you are the logical target for any proceedings - it would be interesting to see what a court made of your company's defense....
Of course if you are telling customers to copy it, you have no defense, as you know you are making an infringing copy.

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