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Discussion in 'General Music Discussion' started by HeHasTheJazzHands, Dec 27, 2018.
it seems that everyone involved, aside from the photographer, is suffering cognitive dissonance
Spiraling thing that got out of control and nobody really looks good by the time it's done, but the writer/photographer opened the 'asshole' can of worms with what he KNOWS was a passive aggressive 'cease and desist' letter to the clothing company.
Yes, he's right that as the artist, without any contract signed between them, its at his discretion how the pictures are used, and it's not unreasonable to take issue with the pictures being used as a commercial advertisement without his consent BUT, he's gaining no points with:
Then further down saying
Mm yes, completely false. Competely. Nope, no threatening letter, no mention of 500 squigglies.
I'm also predisposed to hating this kind of fucking argument. The absolute worst thing to come out of social media culture is the obsession over pictures you post like it's the Mona fuckin Lisa. I can sympathize with not wanting people to steal your work and pretend it's theirs or profit off of it without your consideration but instagram/Facebook/Twitter culture has taken it to the extreme.
And I've have my pictures and video work (I'm a professional photographer and videographer) used without my permission but contextually, I don't think I've ever see anything cross the line to where I thought I needed to take legal action. Snapping pictures at a concert from down on the floor and then trying to extort people for money when they repost them is, even if legal, lazy.
Cool, he thinks the quality of his art puts him above taking an '@' as fair exchange for reposting pictures he took. Fine. I bet he sends out dozens of those 'test balloon' cease-and-desist letters, usually they just take the pic down and move on but once somebody told him it's asinine, and it happened to be a big artist that he happens to be a fan of and all of the sudden he acts like he's being crucified.
This kind murky bullshit is exactly why increasingly bands and venues ban cameras and even cell phones. I don't even think I totally disagree with him wanting the picture taken down and I don't agree with how volatile and accusatory their reply was but he opened his argument cranked to 10, and coinsidering they're a band that's been around and playing big venues for 20+ years, with 100,000s of pictures taken of them over that time, I'm sure they're not especially appreciative of being threatened.
.......do you know what copyright law is?
guy takes picture, to which he is the sole copyright holder. company steals image for own benefit, thereby violating fair use agreements. guy wants company to pay in exchange for a license to use said image in order to advertise product. seems pretty cut and dry
I'm with the guy on the issue, but it's so drama-queeny. Memes never helped anyone come across in a professional manner, and reading Angela's email in a joke voice takes things out of "this is a serious situation that is worth you listening to and caring about" and into mud-slinging. It's possible he could have avoided all this blow-back by just phrasing his emails in a more earnest manner, instead of probably tripping all the alarm bells with the extortiony tone.
Not surprised at all by this. AE are known for crap like this.
They made loomis who was explaining in interviews how he wasn't allowed to contribute to the band do a 180 and tell all interviewers that he joined too late to write, completely contradicting what he said a week or two prior. Exact same thing happened with Alissa when she openly complained about her ideas being turned down when she first joined. She wanted to ad a lot more clean signing and her own lyrics but Michael said no.
The whole situation would be a lot worse if they had removed his watermark, will wait and see of this blows up on social media and what AE's response is. He really could have done with out the Glenn Fricker voice on the email.
Problem is, no approach he takes would work or paint him in a good light.
What is he supposed to do?
He makes these issues public and he is a whiney drama-queen. He doesnt and sits on them hoping it just works out in his favour, and it doesnt etc once people find out they accuse him of being a pussy for not exposing them.
Its lose/lose for the poor guy tbh.
Arch Enemy have spent years creating a Gimmick and a mentality that goes hand in hand with said gimmick, and their actions and this getting exposed, shows them up as liars and hypocrites that completely contradict what they supposedly stand for.
They are absolutely no different from the Corporate bullies stamping on the little man, that they claim to hate so much.
f*$k Arch Enemy
First, I'd like to say how much I hate people just posting videos without any kind of written summary.
Second, whether the photograph is an asshole or not, his ownership of his work stays the same. Using a picture for a commercial venture without authorisation from the rights holder is, to the best of my knowledge, forbidden in all western block countries.
Come on, we all know that everything on the internet is free. Music, videos, photos, everything. Paying for digital data is so 2000 or something... seriously though, this "we won't pay you, but you get exposure!" thing has been a problem for years, that's basically how all those streaming services work (although I guess they technically pay you... 0.1 cent if someone plays your entire record?), and from reading what the photographer wrote about the incident, it was clearly not the first time it happened to him. Still, beginning the letter with stating that he is also an attorney is probably as passive aggressive as it gets and turns it from "I'm an artist that rightfully wants to be paid for his work, but I'll let this slide if you donate for charity" to "Just so you know it, I could sue you for this, so you might want to cooperate ". I can totally understand why he did that, though, and not only is he right (and he could have been WAY more aggressive), the way Arch Enemy reacted to that was just bad. A few years ago that might have even shocked me a bit, but being self employed for a few years, it seems that's basically how business works. You take whatever you can get, and when somebody has a different opinion, it routinely either becomes a dick measuring contest or if they can't really deny being wrong they act like a spoiled child and try to at least harm you as much as possible. Small business, international corporations, Arch Enemy, same story...
Photographer is mostly at fault IMO.
If you post on social media, people are going to re-post it. That's something you have to accept. There's a grey area with what happened here. The clothing company reposted the image using the built-in reposting facility in Instagram. They didn't edit it. They didn't cut off his logo or watermark. They didn't claim it was theirs. They didn't take the photo and host it on their own website. They simply re-granned it.
A crappy photo of a singer on stage isn't worth €500. His tone was irritating and pushy. I'm not surprised they got irritated. And all of that "donate to charity" stuff just makes him sounds like a cunt. "Oh, look at what a nice guy I am. I'm only doing this on principle, blah blah".
As @Randy said, there is a massive abundance of photographers out there. Great gear is super cheap. It's not hard at all to stand in the photo pit and get good shots. IMO it's a dying profession, since the barriers to entry have come way down and there are so many amateurs who can pull off great photos and will do it for free. AA can choose from an abundance of keen photographers at every venue they play, who won't cause fuss and threaten people, then deny threatening them.
Correct. He still could've worded his initial reply in a way that got the point across and descalated this issue rather than getting them where they ended up.
He’s in the right but wrong way to go about it.
What’s with all this do this or I’ll sue garbage. Just sue. Just do it. Sue first. Ask questions later.
If I were the photographer, I would have used direct snail-mail with a significantly clearer wording to charge them for using his photo for advertising. No donation back door, no excuses, just an invoice. The legal facts are very simple in this case...
He said pay me for using my image in an advertisement with which your company is hoping to generate a profit by using, or donate some money to charity. So if everything mentioned about copyright laws is accurate, he's in the right, and that's totally fair. Maybe he is a douche, but he's right.
Ever have a promoter get salty because they're using your band to draw for a "national touring act" and you ask for a guarantee? Sure, maybe it a dick move to ask for a guarantee for a show that's 8 blocks away, but they wouldn't be asking if they didn't think it would help bring people in to cover the guarantee for *insert-band-that-won't-draw-much-on-a-wednesday-even-though-they-had-a-radio-song-in-2011* why shouldn't we get a slice of the pie? Artists accepting "exposure" for payment is how we ended up in a place where Otep convinces promoters to charge local bands to open for them/tour with them. If you're good at something, never do it for free.
In any case, regardless of the wording and regardless if you think the guy was passive aggressive and if his profession is a dying one, he is still legally right. If the clothing agency just reposted the Instagram on their official gram it still counts as advertising. Putting a link to their site is even worse.
I'd say, him being an attorney, the time was quite tame. If you think asking to donate to charity is him trying to appear holier than though this whole thread has made me want to donate to the Danish cancer charity.
Arch Enemy promoting anarchist ideas? The only anarchist idea I can see them promoting is "everything is good as long as it profits me". Which is the notion capitalism tries to convey as anarchy and more or less is what capitalism does. I never paid any attention to their imagery and haven't found them appealing to listen to since their first records but Angela and Michael should take a chill pill. They're obviously in the wrong and should have tried to de-escalate the situation themselves instead of playing the "oh we're sooooo edgy everyone is attacking us to try and profit". 100 euros to a charity is change for them and they would have looked better than whiny children.
I recommend clicking the link and reading his entire write up, because it offers more clarity than the video. He did try and contact the company through Instagram DM about it but they ignored him, hence the emails.
I did concert photography semi professionally from around 2003-2010, and I can't imagine handling a situation like this worse than AE did. Angela's email is completely laughable, and in my mind makes her look like she's probably a terrible manager overall. Copyright and use/ownership of photos a photographer takes of a band is completely common knowledge throughout the industry, and that's why when a band does want to maintain control/ownership they do like the Foo Fighters and make photographers sign something acknowledging it. As this guy mentions in his write up I think musicians in particular are extra sensitive about ownership rights of other artists and try to do everything above board.
As an example, sometime in I think 2009 I shot Megadeth while they were opening for Heaven & Hell. A month or so after the show Dave Mustaine was selling a bunch of old gear off on ebay, including the Von Dutch shirt that he was wearing the night I shot them. Dave tracked me down and emailed me personally to ask if he could use some of my photos in his ebay listing. I of course told him yes and thanked him for asking. If this is something that Dave Mustaine is cognizant of, what excuse does AE have?
What charity did you make him donate to?
Not your call, and if you find it too expensive you're free not to buy it and not use it. 500€ for having to enter a legal procedure to recover the money seems actually pretty cheap.
Seriously though, I feel like that would have been a situation where he could have used it without asking, but he respected the process enough to just do it. As a matter of fact, Heaven & Hell wanted to use my photos from that same show on their official website which would totally have been fair use, and they still hit me up and asked for permission. It's not that hard really.