Saturday, October 18, 2008

2 blogs in 1 day!

First off let me start by saying I don't plan on writing 2 entries in one day - not saying that won't happen but that is not what the title is trying to indicate - its even cooler! What it does mean however, is that my name came up in 2 of my favorite blogs to read!

The first blog is posted by one of my good friends and an amazing photographer from Boston. He is an umpire and he found shots of himself working a Suns game on my Flickr page and got in touch. The rest is history! Anyway, back to the blog. I was having difficulty with some of my shots I took while in Alaska. The composition and everything was pretty good but the colors due to the haze and other elements just made some of the shots come out really flat, and it didn't truly express what I was seeing through the viewfinder. I got in touch with Doug and asked if he had any advice on how I could get the shot to look better. I knew Doug would have some advice about the shot and how to work with it in Lightroom 2 - he's a genius when it comes to photoshop and all of their products and is a regular at Kelby Training and is a member of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP) and REALLY knows his stuff. I admit I would probably be a little better at learning the digital darkroom side of the craft if I wasn't in school and I plan on learning much more about it once I take the bar. Anyway, who needs self help with great friends and Photoshop geniuses like Doug? :-) So Doug decided to create a blog post/tutorial using only Lightroom 2 and took me and his readers step by step through how he worked with the image with screen shots and all. Seriously, this Doug guy is great. The tutorial was amazing and I can't wait to apply the techniques he suggested on a lot of my images. I strongly suggest you read his post here and if you're not really into photo finishing, check out some of his other posts & photos - he is truly talented. Thanks for the tutorial Doug!

The second blog post I was involved in is also from one of my favorite blogs written by Carolyn E. Wright - The Photo Attorney. (I literally check both of these blogs daily) Her mix of practicing law, photography, and protecting the rights of photographers is truly the perfect job! I'm jealous! Her blog is very informative about current legal issues in the photography world as well as alerting photographers to some contests/schemes that are aimed at gathering photos and reducing or stripping the individual photographer's rights to their work. You would be amazed at how many large companies host "photo contests" and offer great prizes but if you read the fine print, you're essentially giving your image away for the company to do with it what they please. It's really awful and it pains me to see how many people fall into this trap without even knowing what they are giving up. Anyway, yesterday I received a flickrmail from "Fanbase" a self proclaimed "Silicon Valley upstart" that is trying to create a new fan based sports web page. The photos they were interested in me "posting" were of the Jacksonville Jaguars training camp and I knew something was wrong when the author of the email told me I was "clearly one of the best Jaguars photographers on the web." I'd like to think I'm alright at what I do, but I've only shot one event for the Jags and I have worked with some of the best, I am not one of the best. Anyway, the email raised a lot of red flags for me thanks to my legal education and Ms. Wright's blog. I followed the link to the sign up page and clicked on the user agreement which the page states the user agrees to by clicking "sign in." The "Content" section of the agreement was the most troubling which states:

"Content. You retain ownership of your content, but we may, without compensation, publish your content on our site and elsewhere and republish your content (or extracts of it) to promote our site. We or other users may edit or remove your content, and we may not be able to update or stop publishing your content if it's edited or removed."

So essentially, any photo you submit or post onto this site, "Fanbase" can publish it to promote their site - without payment and likely without crediting the work to the photographer. WHAT A DEAL! It is clearly a bad idea for any serious photographer to get involved with this group but unfortunately most would not have read the agreement prior to "signing in" and then binding themselves to the agreement. Just another company trying to get free images to use how they wish without justly compensating the photographer.

I contacted Ms. Wright and attached the email and explained how I was a regular reader of her blog and I felt this site may warrant her attention. She posted parts of the email as well as an alert to her other readers and I made my 2nd blog in 1 day! To read her post about Fanbase, click here and be sure to check out some of her other very interesting and informative posts.

Yesterday was a great day that involved lots of great blog reading - a perfect way to keep my mind off of how sore my leg was! Thanks Doug & Ms. Wright!

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