I heard a story once about a graphic designer who tried to pay his electricity bill with the drawing of a seven-legged spider.
It went viral and now the graphic designer in question – David Thorne – is kind of a pretty big deal. But what really sparked this venture, was being repeatedly told that whatever job he’d been asked to complete, wasn’t a paid job, but it would be ‘great exposure’.
As a writer and a creative, this story holds true for me in so many ways but this was taken so much further for me this week when a photographer friend of mine shared an even darker side of the business.
“Oh people rarely credit me when they repost the photo.” Wait… sorry, wot? Oh yeah, it’s a thing, photographers often lose out in that situation.
As someone who has had professional photos taken for both business and personal use, it never even crossed my mind to omit the photographer’s name and brand when using the photo for the purpose that it was intended.
But apparently it is a thing that happens and I want to know why and I want it to stop.
It’s pretty easy to see the amount of work that goes into a shoot as well as editing the resulting gallery. So why isn’t this something that we are all ready and willing to acknowledge.
The wedding business is rife with this kind of behaviour. I mean, look, I get it. Couples get excited and want to share their happy news with the inter webs. But… have you noticed that couples are quick to tag the venue, the outfits, the food, their friends, but the photographer who captured the moment? Not so much.
It’s pretty simple. Just think before you post ya know? Think about the person whose livelihood depends on a platform like instagram to run their business.
Sure, you may not be hand making the exact same fashion design or replicating word for word something that someone else has written but posting a photographers photo without a) permission and b) without credit is actually the same thing.
If you are working with a photographer, look at their contract before you post. Or better yet, why not just ask them what’s actually acceptable?
Just take a mini mom before you rush off and hit the post button, think about the photographer trying to feed their family or better yet, think about someone other than those who happen to be trawling your gram.