The new Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act will change copyright laws allowing Photographs to be exploited without any payment or knowledge of the creative owner.
"Unless your works are registered or plastered with a watermark, anyone can use your copyrighted work for their own commercial and personal gains provided they have made a small effort to search for the original owner. If no owner can be found, they are free to do with it whatever they want." - form e-petition 49422.
BBC Journalist Andrew Orlowski, has dubbed this the ‘Instagram Act’ and claims that “Most digital images on the internet today are orphans”. This means that the metadata is either missing or has been stripped out automatically by large organisations such as social media site — Facebook. These orphaned pieces of work are therefore being exploited, for major commercial gain, with barely any effort going into the research of the creators behind them.
Professional and keen Photographers alike need to take action to prevent images from being used without our knowledge and permission. We need it to reach over 100,000 for this to really make a difference, so please share this petition.
Just imagine if your family holiday photos, were suddenly used in an advertising campaign for the likes of "Thomas Cook holidays" and the first you knew of it, your kids are on a billboard… without your permission and without being paid… how would you feel?
If you can, send the link below to as many friends as possible to Stop Legalized Theft of Copyrighted Work.