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  1. #1
    Ara Ghajanian's Avatar
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    My photo was plagiarized... what would you do in this situation?

    I'd like to know other photographers' opinion on this because it's really bothering me and I can't let it go without some recourse:

    I did a very unique photograph last year on April 22. I had posted it on APUG shortly thereafter, so there is definite proof that I had done it that long ago. A photographer who I know through my girlfriend took that concept and rephotographed it himself recently thus stealing my concept. The concept was a photo of a woman in a bath tub pointing a gun at the camera. I came up with the concept years ago when I moved into my house and realized I had a nice bathroom to take photos in. When I met my girlfriend last year, it was the first photo she modeled for me. She had modeled for him at one point a few months before we met and she definitely sent him a copy of our photo after we did it. He was well aware of this photo because we are both members of modelmayhem.com and I have had that photo posted on there since July 30, 2005 (there is proof on the site). Recently, I looked at his Model Mayhem page only to find that he had a very very similar photo taken recently (posted March 27, 2006). Obviously, I was rather upset, but I have not said anything to him yet. I wanted to consult with my trusted colleagues on APUG first before I proceed.

    I am not naive, I know this happens often. What bothers me is that he knows me and the model in the photo and it was an obvious plagiarism. I want to at least make him aware of my outrage and inform him that he has betrayed my trust. What would you do?

    In all modesty, my photo came out much better and (here's the icing on the cake) his is shot in digital. Lazy crook.
    Ara
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails arasoriginal.jpg   joesplagiarism.jpg  
    Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you.

  2. #2
    jovo's Avatar
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    Simple....tell the "other" girl to pull the trigger next time!
    John Voss

    My Blog

  3. #3
    JBrunner's Avatar
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    While a simple bit of acknowlegement to you may have gone a long way, as far as niceties go, simple photo "concept" is not really something you can claim as intellectual property. If he had stolen your actual image, that would be different. I would take it as flattery.

  4. #4
    bill schwab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ara Ghajanian
    A photographer who I know through my girlfriend took that concept and rephotographed it himself recently thus stealing my concept.
    What is it they say? "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" ?

    If you're good, it will happen often. Don't sweat it. Let him know YOU know and let it go at that. Although there IS legal recourse in certain situations, his image is not close enough in composition to be considered an infringement of your rights. The concept of beautiful women in various states of dress with guns is not new. Because it is in a bathroom doesn't change this.

    Nice shot though.

    Bill

  5. #5
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Plagiarism would actually need the images to be far more similar. The idea of shooting a girl in a bath with a gun is far from new anyway, I've seen plenty, after all look at the film Nikkita :-)

    The photographer has produced quite a differeent image to you so don't read so much into it, OK he liked your idea but he has not tried to recreate your image !

    Ian

  6. #6
    gr82bart's Avatar
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    Plagiarism in girlie photography? There's no such thing. Sorry Ara, but there are very few original ideas any more in girlie photos. Girl with a gun is pretty cliche. Been there, done that, have the t-shirt.

    What should you do? Take more pics of your great GF.

    Art.
    Last edited by gr82bart; 04-07-2006 at 01:28 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Visit my website at www.ArtLiem.com
    or my online portfolios at APUG and ModelMayhem

  7. #7
    Cheryl Jacobs's Avatar
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    Sorry, Ara, but the previous posters are correct on this one. You can't do a thing about it, as irritating as it is. The photos are different in execution, and the concept is not something you can own.

    I deal with this A LOT. It's incredibly annoying. Some of the imitators have gone to great lengths to duplicate my shots down to the last detail. Frustrating, but that's just the way it goes. On the other hand, I've had entire text pages of mine ripped off, and I mean paragraphs literally cut and pasted without a single word changed. That's a different story, and I can and do take action in those cases.

    - CJ

  8. #8

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    Two photographs in equally poor taste. If I were you, I'd try not to let anyone know that you'd made one of them. Blame them both on the other guy, if you can.

  9. #9

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    hi ara

    sorry to hear of your woes.
    they said it all before me, unless he actually took your image and publised it as his own, youreouttaluck. i remember when you posted that photo a year ago, and it looks as good now as it did then

    now you must know how ansel adams must feel with all his tripod holes filled with other people's tripods !

    see you around!
    john

  10. #10
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    My response to you would be: read the copyright law and how it applies in the USA. Copyright is not too hard to understand, and if you're willing to know what is the real world situation with this, then know your rights. You may or may not find comfort. As said above, copyright is not like patents. You have a copyright on your picture, not on its idea. (If I'm fumbling through legal concepts here, someone please correct me).

    I'm no lawyer and Canadian so I can't help you further here, but I do sympathize with your assholeness allergy. Perhaps one simple thing to do would be to call up the guy and tell him he's lame.
    Using film since before it was hip.


    "One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11

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