Stock photos and property releases guide lines
I have a plant web site www.plantstogrow.com. There are about 6,000 pictures on the site. I get many requests for the picture and even was offered to buy my data base. I am going to start a new site to sell plant images. Focusing a a very narrow market. People interested in pictures of botanically correct named plants. The problem is I have taken many thousand of pictures at 3 botanical gardens. One charges a $50 dollar fee life time for stock photo's, one doesn't know how to handle me using the pictures from their gardens and one is rather rude towards me about using pictures from their gardens. Doing alot of research on the subject it seems to me if you can't identify the place of the picture there is no problem ( a close-up shot). If the place is identifiable (a vista), there may be a problem. What are my rights??
Paul AKA "Dr. Dirt"
Well Doc, if you asked a really specific legal question, what I'd tell you is talk to a lawyer who specializes in intellectual property law. But your question is so general, that I couldn't begin to answer it here and so you really need to talk to a lawyer who specializes in intellectual property law because trying to answer that broad of a question properly is like trying to empty the ocean with a teaspoon.
Since you're running a commercial enterprise, presumably for a profit, my legal advice is drop a dime and talk to an IP lawyer in your area. Call the County Bar Assn'. lawyer referral service for some names.
Thanks for your quick and candid response. Maybe this will clarify a few things. I looked at some of your galleries of pictures. One you had a picture of the Custom House, another of liberty with the twin towers and another with a granite statue of a sitting person outside of a building. All of these pictures contained things that are easily identifiable. If you want to sell these do you need a property release? If you legally wouldn't, than if I took a picture of a plant, in a botanical garden, than I probably wouldn't need a release. You are right I need to see a lawyer for an opinion. When the new site is put together the pictures I tag to take from the data base, will be unidentifiable to there place of origin. Except for the places I have permission to use the pics. In my research on this subject the ability to identify clearly the origin of the picture seems to be the point of contention. Alamy Stock photography has some good explanations on property releases.
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