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Re: [Aroid-l] Copyright=ebay=advice

This topic has been interesting.  I had not considered how valuable photos are considered until Alan posted he was removing pictures from his site because people were copying them.  I think listing a  link to a site in an auction should be OK, as most people publish to the web with the intent to generate traffic, the more the better.
But I don't see how Ebay can get in the middle of a dispute of who owns a picture.  It sounds like I can shut down anybody's auction by emailing Ebay and claiming the photo is mine?
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, July 02, 2007 11:04 AM
Subject: [Aroid-l] Copyright=ebay=advice

You are right ! My posting was not meant a Legal Advice to Anyone. Just a way to inform the members how to  stop people selling on Ebay from using anyone?s photo?s . It was explained to me that Ebay could be exposed for a class action if they did not address the problem (agin this is not legal advice ) & they figured out how to make some cash by doing what they are now doing while also protecting themselves at the same time with the new policy of removing the offending auctions without refunding the listing fee?s  . As Michael Pascall  pointed out the bromeliad folks are way on top of their images as they should be as their data base is huge with some Very fine photo?s of some really rare plants   Michael Mahan  (who is not a lawyer & not offering any legal advice to anyone )


From: ted
Subject: [Aroid-l] Copyright


First, please understand that I am NOT a lawyer. I am assuming that others who have opinions on this and contribute to this list are also not lawyers. Why that is important is that if you are not a lawyer, your opinion weighs in a lot less, especially if you are attempting to offer legal advice. At the very least, your opinion carries no weight. Worse, you might lead someone astray if they try to follow your advice. Worst of all, you may run afoul of laws about practicing law without a license. Just keep in mind where you stand.

Second, understand that Steve is right about what a copyright allows you to do. It allows you to bring a court action. It does not mean you are going to win. It also does not mean you will be able to collect even if you do. This is just one of those hard things you need to know these days.

So, what if someone uses your image without your consent? OK, you cough up a couple of thousand for a lawyer as a retainer and an advance on expenses. Then the lawyer has to track down the offender, which may be difficult. Then the suit needs to be filed, making claims. What are the claims for a guy stealing your image for e-Bay? If the item sells for $50, let us say, you might be able to argue that your image raised his selling price by $10? Is that fair? Maybe, if you're lucky, you get the whole $50 at stake. Then you might try for court costs or some sort of pain and suffering. Hmm. Maybe your original $2000 plus $50. This is small claims territory. And even if you get a judgment, how are you gonna collect? More legal hassles.

I think you see what I am getting at. Sometimes it's not worth the trouble. It's one thing to sue a deep pockets offender like General Motors. It's quite another to sue some lowlife bum who steals a picture off the internet. I'm glad e-Bay has the policy described because I don't think there are many other options.

So, where does that get us? It gets us back to Steve's other statement. It's a matter of courtesy and common decency to ask first and make the proper attribution. Decency? Courtesy? When was the last time those came up? Put me down as an old fashioned guy who still believes in doing the right thing. Remember, I am not a lawyer.


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