Do you know who’s stealing your photos?
Photographs are wonderful. They are art, storytellers, memories and our own products. We put our hearts, souls and of course also a lot of effort into the perfect shots.
That’s why we rightfully think that our photos are our own photos. They’re our intellectual property. Our photos should not be used without a license. We sell other’s the right to use them in a previously agreed way. That’s why We do not expect people to carelessly steal them and sell them as their own or use them for commercial purposes. Even though some of us are aware that there are many image thieves at work we do not expect ourselves to ever be a victim of image theft. That is why it is shocking and frustrating if we do figure out the amount of image thefts that actually happen to us
How can I find out who’s stealing my photos?
There are some great multiple tools to find out who’s stolen using your photos and where they’re being published. But some of them require a large amount of time and patience, as you have to upload each photo manually and then click through each result and see for yourself if it actually is a copy of your photo and if there’s a copyright violation or not. In some cases the quality of the results is insufficient. LAPIXA does not let photographers search through the whole web on their own. The free- software to- use technology automatically searches through the internet to find copies of images and suggests allows photographers to open up a case if there’s a copyright violation. The service is easy to use and through smart integrations to social media platforms (Instagram) photographers are able to upload their entire content with one click. Photographers like Johannes Knuth are relieved to know this. “With LAPIXA I am gaining control on how my photos are being used”, says Knuth.
Some image thieves remove the watermark and replace it with theirs. Photographer Dane Vetter knows this all too well, “it’s shocking if I see that someone placed their own watermark on my photo and then sell the image as theirs.” This makes it even more difficult for some tools to find the copy online. LAPIXA is using a reverse-image-search, which also finds the most heavily edited photos. There’s no way out for image thieves if there’s a software that knows exactly how they work.
What can I do, when I find out that someone stole my photos?
With most tools, if there is a violation, you have to contact the stealing party on your own and inform them about the issue. But let’s be honest, how many replies would we get if we do this on our own? In most cases, in order to receive a response, you have to hire a lawyer, which is already a very expensive thought and if the violation happened outside your country of residence, the case is usually already lost if your lawyer is not based in the same country as the infringer is. Serge Licht, CEO of LAPIXA doesn’t let infringers in other countries get away with image theft that easily, “thanks to our global network of lawyers we can take care of the whole legal processes all around copyright violations in many different countries and we bear all the costs. At the moment we are operating in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, UK & USA and we’re always looking to expand.”
Chief Executive Officer, LAPIXA GmbH