Thursday, December 6, 2012

5,000 new stock images in Google Drive, thanks to you

A few months ago, many of you submitted ideas on how we can expand the selection of stock images in Google Drive to add to the categories that you’re most interested in.

Thanks to your suggestions, 5,000 new photos of nature, weather, animals, sports, food, education, technology, music and 8 other categories are now available for your use in Docs, Sheets, and Slides. More than 900 of these photos were selected directly from your submissions -- we really appreciate your help!

Thanks again for your submissions, and keep the ideas coming on the Google Drive +page.

Posted by Adah Berkovich, User Operations Specialist

192 comments:

  1. Wonderful crowd sourced initiative - are the images royalty free for personal / commercial use?

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    1. Please be aware (see later posts) that these images have been used here without the consent of their copyright owners. Using these images for commercial purposes carries the risk of legal action and damages. The text on the Google Drive search page does not really make this clear enough. These are certainly not royalty free for commercial use.

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    2. Please be aware (see later posts) that these images have been used here without the consent of their copyright owners. Using these images for commercial purposes carries the risk of legal action and damages. The text on the Google Drive search page does not really make this clear enough. These are certainly not royalty free for commercial use.

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    3. Please be aware (see later posts) that these images have been used here without the consent of their copyright owners. Using these images for commercial purposes carries the risk of legal action and damages. The text on the Google Drive search page does not really make this clear enough. These are certainly not royalty free for commercial use.

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    4. This was not crowd sourced. I heard the Images were taken from Getty Library WITHOUT the consent of contributing Artist. I wouldn't touch these images fo anything.

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    5. No, they're not. Read more of the comments.

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    6. Darla, Where do you think the images are coming from?

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    7. Please see all the negative comments below -- this is a disaster. Use these photos at your peril (morally and legally)...

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    8. This is a disaster -- please read all the negative comments below. Use these photos only at great (moral and legal) peril...

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    9. They were not crowd sourced, they were ripped from unsuspecting stock photographers by their back-stabbing distributor that paid them a paltry below-market sum before handing them over to Google. Copyright information has been deleted in violation of the DMCA. The "commercial use" clause appears to be only if it is used in a Google Doc, Google Site or Google Presentation created on their site. You have to ask yourself what self-respecting designer would be using those programs instead of professional design software if they are working for clients and do you really want to represent yourself with images that millions of others are also using.

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    10. These were not crowd sourced. They were ripped from unsuspecting stock photographers and put here by their distributor that paid them a paltry below-market sum. It seems that the "commercial use" is limited only to media created with Google Docs, Google Site or Google Presentation. You have to ask yourself what self-respecting designer would be creating work for clients using those rather than professional programs and do you really want to use images to represent your client or yourself that are potentially being used by tens if not hundreds of millions of others.

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    11. These images were made available here without the consent of their copyright holders

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    12. The professional photographers who created these images aren't happy about this. Many are now going to leave the sites that have supplied them to Google, apparently without informing them about it. I hope Google will do the right thing and remove all these images. They should buy them direct from the photographers with their full agreement.

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    13. I intend to make life unhappy for people using my images downloaded from here. Without my permission.

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  2. As an avid Google Apps for Businesses user I'd love the ability to add a Stock Photo archive available for our users only. Any chance of this happening in the not too distant future (we're looking into solutions as I type this).

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  3. This is great. Could the 'Search' function be amended to include an 'All' so we don't have to search each of the 3 libraries separately, or is there a copyright reason for keeping them separate?

    Incidentally, I couldn't specifically find the beautiful shot of the mountain above under 'mountain' or 'cloud' in the Stock library

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  4. i kind of dont have access to this. can only insert my own images.

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    Replies
    1. It is enabled for all. Here is a nice tutorial for the same. http://www.quickonlinetips.com/archives/2012/12/google-drive-free-stock-images/

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    2. thanks for this innovation

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    3. innovation?This is straight forward theft of copyrights.
      I have a feeling that this will give google a major headache. Meanwhile I refrain from using these as it is too risky

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    4. It's not innovation. It's theft. Google is paying Getty Contributors $12.

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  5. Any way to turn safe search on for the images. This is a fantastic resource, but some are not the most appropriate for elementary school students. (search "animals" and you'll see what I mean)
    Thanks!

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  6. Wow! that was surprising, but not as risque as I was expecting.

    I'm a little frustrated that a search for "couple" provides a plethora of straight white couples without any representation of brown people or homosexual couples.

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  7. This is great. It will be interesting to watch this grow. I wonder if they are going to add videos to it also--oh wait there is that site called youTube.

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  8. Spare a thought for the people who spent money and time producing those images that you just want for free. Does intellectual property not even enter into your selfish consciousnesses?

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  9. How and where were the 4100 other pictures acquired? Were and are they being paid for when the are used? I create image content for sale and would hate (and be hurt to know) that my images (or my colleagues') are being thrown out for free after much hard work and investments in producing them. And to believe that this is being done only because these works are available in electronic format.

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    Replies
    1. A lot of these images that are being given away for free sell for $80-$300 on the stock site where they were taken from and the photographers are not being compensated for all the free downloads.

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    2. sounds bad and risky to use... I am not comfortable to use these now.

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    3. Many if not all of these images are being used without the consent of their creators. Use them at your own (very great) risk.

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    4. This is why I never use/upload to Getty/iStock. http://www.aphotoeditor.com/2013/01/16/getty-hands-google-users-free-commercial-images-photographers-get-12/

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    5. Throwing work of somebody for free is always disrespectful, and smells crime. People which make living creating images are offended by this. Hairy hand of Google in our pocket.

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  10. Go ahead iStock and Google, take our intellectual copyrighted property and give it away for free, what a crock !!!

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  11. IStock and Google, you're stealing our images and giving them away for free! Shame on you!

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  12. Photos do not grow on trees. There are photographers behind them. It is sad to see photos without the proper author attribution.

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  13. Most of these images come from istock and Gettyimages, Contributors are very angry about this deal, no one signed up to have there content redistributed like this, This is wrong. photographers are getting stiffed here

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  14. Shame on you Google. Using people's hard work without compensation for your own gain is one of the definitions of evil. And anyone who downloads and uses these images for commercial purposes should be aware that they are opening themselves up to lawsuits.

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  15. this is awful! I've just found two of my photos in this pool!
    I put a lot of work into my photos and my equipment is expensive.
    Shame on Google for giving the photos away for free ;
    Google, you are devaluing our work.

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  16. IStock and Google, you're stealing our images!!!! This is bot acceptable

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  17. Should I be offended that none of my iStock images are part of this program, or should I be relieved? No question: relieved is the right answer. As best I can determine, none of the creators of these images were asked to participate in a program that paid them peanuts (a one time payment of $12) and gives away their work hundreds of thousands of times. This is a great deal for Google and its users, an okay deal for iStock and a complete disaster for the photographers who participate against their will. Yeah, I'm relieved.

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  18. If any of my images are found being used as a result of downloading from this site (Google Drive) I shall issue legal proceedings immediately against any company, in any country using them. Be warned. UK copyright law is very clear and very punitive. I have irrefutable evidence of copyright for all my images which are also registered with the copyright authorities in the UK. All these images have been taken unlawfully from the copyright owners (the photographers) at iScockphoto/Getty and Thinkstock without their granted permission.

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  19. Those 'free' images are made available in a disgusting deal that none of the picture copyright owners agreed to! Those were licensed to google but there is no legal license to use them for commercial purposes by google end users!
    Google has no right to redistribute those for free!!
    This is nowhere how licensing works. I would strongly advise aganist using those files in commerial way!

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  20. These photos are copyright, and Google does not have permission from the copyright-holders to make them available. If you use them you could be liable for stealing photographs.

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  21. It makes me sick to my stomach to see, so many wonderful images, created by hard working photographers, being given away like this. The agencies involved should be ashamed of themselves.

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  22. WOW... nice "DEAL" iStockphoto and Google... shame on you!

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  23. Yay free stuff !!! Love it!!!

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    Replies
    1. wait till you get sued.... this deal is illegal, there will be legal action

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    2. 21st century dude....you can get all your content for free or really small fee anyway from the net ( google it...lol ) and you are worrying about this.

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    3. Just keep on downloading "free stuff".
      We have a nice saying: "Every pig has its butcher".

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    4. Google DO NOT own the copyright to these images. You can and may well get sued for using them. Claiming it's the 21st century is irrelevant. There are plenty of places to legally buy the rights to images for a small fee of which the photographer gets their rightful cut.

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    5. Maybe I only make a small fee per use on my photos, but it's my income. Don't think that just because you're stealing something small, doesn't mean it's doing no harm. There are such things as class action suits, and as blanket fines.

      Pay the small fee, avoid the larger legal fees that will occur now that stock photographers have gotten together.

      Delete
  24. woow... it sounds like these photos are obtained unethically..... I will not use anything that is not fair trade.

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  25. Being a photographer who submits work to Getty/iStock, this makes me sick. Shameful.

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  26. What a crock of shit. My images are in here and this steals money from me. I believe it to be completely illegal. CROOKS!! Istock/Getty and Google conspiring to STEAL copyright, what a fkn SHAM!!

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  27. Well i have 3 images here, and i aware everyone to NOT use them to anything, because it's illegal!!! I am the copyright owner of theese 3 photos, and i did not give permission for such a use. As my contract with my agency point out, this kind of use is prohibited!!!

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  28. Those images are works of art, that took time, skills and money to create. $12 that the artists received for this deal in not nearly enough for giving away them for free :(
    That is just like buying a CD and sharing it on torrent sites, and wile we are on the subject, please, could you google make a torrent of these images?

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  29. Google....you are giving away people's work for free without their consent...this deal was secretly done months ago between Getty and Google without the copyright holders knowledge..

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  30. These images were stolen by Getty/IstockPhoto and sold to Google without the consent, knowledge or permission of the copyright holders. Google's motto is don't be evil so let's hope they have the gumption to remove these images and demand a refund from Getty!

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  31. These pictures are copyrighted by photographers!!! Google doesn't have any kind of permission for this pictures!!!
    I can't wait that someone use some of my pictures...I will earn much more money on that way shared with my lawyer!!!

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  32. This pictures are stolen and they were published without any permission of copyright holders...in this case photographers! Google just notify this and remove all this pictures from your service!

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  33. These images were made available here without the consent of their copyright holders. I have 8 images included here, all of them are stock images that I sell, and I was not even notified that this is happening. I did not agree to a free redistribution of my images!!! I can't believe both Google and Getty think it's fine - they should know a thing or two about copyright. Please remove the images asap, this deal is illegal and invalid.

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  34. Google and Getty will tell users of these images that those two companies have a contract. That may be true, but any users of these images needs to be aware that this alleged contract is almost certainly extremely flawed...and will almost certainly be subject to intensive legal review. There is absolutely no question that removing copyright ownership information from digital intellectual property - no matter which fingers point to whomever else will be alleged to have removed that legal protection information - is at minimum - highly unethical, and at maximum - criminal. All of these recent posts here are definitely not from crackpot moaning liberal "arteests" - they are being posted by honest, hard-working image creators who absolutely - again, there is ABSOLUTELY NO QUESTION HERE - own ALL RIGHTS to the distribution of this content. Again, you've been warned that use of these images is NOT a good idea - in any context.

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  35. Not cool, Google, not cool. iStock/Getty acted irresponsibly here, and you played along with some sketchy double-speak about usage.

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  36. As many people have already pointed out, this was done without the photographers' knowledge or permission. The photos are copyrighted. Any use of these "free" photos could result in legal action.

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  37. I would be very hesitant to use these images for any commercial purpose. They were obtained without the knowledge or consent of the artists who hold the copyrights. Ultimately they will probably be the subject of a lawsuit, so using these "free" images may well cost thousands in legal fees.

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  38. Some big issues with this deal:

    1) no possibilities of opting out for the copyright owners.

    2) no information whatsoever that this was happening until someone blew the whistle after the fact.

    3)The terms of the usual licenses that photographers know and have access to have been thrown out the window and replaced by undisclosed terms to allow this. Again, copyright holders were not in any way informed that this was taking place.

    4) There is no possibility to have the work removed from Google drive, even by deleting the files from the unscrupulous distributor who forged this deal since technically Google did buy that shady, undisclosed license for each photo.

    5) All copyright information has been deleted from the photographs, which are available for free to anyone with access to Google and knows how to right click and save a picture on their hard drive.

    6) Google is not warning users about the restrictions pertaining to the usage of Royalty Free Images(and there are many) or any limitations coming from the deal they signed. In fact they are asking the user to find that out on their own. Good luck with that.

    7) Getty Images is fully ready to use top technology to catch wrongful use from any unsuspecting Google Drive user who failed to unearth the hidden license and uses the images outside of Google Docs, and slam them with their usual big bills, making even more money from this.

    8) Getty Images seem to think that photographers should be happy getting $12 to have their work put here with no mention of who they are or where the photos come from, therefore making a mockery of any promotional claims, which anyway there are none. The photos are then distributed to millions of people for free, without any further royalties.

    9)Getty Images is satisfied with their high volume license sale with Google and wants to do more no matter what the copyright holders think of this.

    So yes, there is much question about the legal aspect of basically hijacking and exploiting copyrighted work by both companies without consulting the copyright holders, without offering the choice of participation and without properly informing the end user of the nature and regulations of the images made available to them.

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    1. Hear, hear! #6 is a very important point - any images with models or released private property in them have restrictions on how they may be used commercially to protect the models (from appearing to express views they don't hold, for example).

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  39. iStock, Getty and Google - please stop this now. These images are not your copyright - that belongs to the photographers who have spent their own time and money on photographic shoots. This deal stinks for everyone concerned. As a part-time photographer I feel upset that this deal has been made to the detriment of the photographers; as a designer and photo buyer I would never download one of these images from Google Docs - I would always pay for it and be sure that it was properly licensed.

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  40. This is an immoral and possibly illegal initiative whereby the image providers were paid a paltry $12, without their consent, to have their images disseminated far and wide. No contributor would allow this.
    Producing these images is often very expensive (hire of models, props, travel, as well as the expensive equipment - these aren't just phone snaps - and the photogrphers have bills to pay, children to feed just like everyone else. Think about that when you cheer about the 'free' images.
    And don't even dream about using them in any commercial way.

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  41. This was not crowd sourced. It was done in a clandestine deal between Getty and Google. The photographers were not consulted, and Getty only owned up to it when they were caught out.

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    1. I think the crowd helped choose which images Getty and Google were gonna abuse. Thanks a lot internet.

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    2. owned up to it.?... where? how? what did they say about it?

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  42. Crowd sourced without the "crowd's" permission = stealing.

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  43. You are dancing on photographers graves. Legitimate copyright owners have not agree (and event have not been informed) with this sneaky deal.

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  44. google involved in unfair trade...cheating... woowww...

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  45. This cozy little deal between Getty and Google may well not hold up as none of the copyright holders agreed to this virtual giveaway of their work.

    Users of Google Drive want to think very carefully about whether they want to risk using these images commercially. Getty can blather all they want about how they think they have the right to enrich themselves with an invalid contract with Google - "Don't be evil"?? Really? - but that doesn't make it the case.

    Copyright owners are not going to allow theft to be reclassified as a valid licensing deal - Google Drive end users really wouldn't want to get caught up in this legal wrangling, especially when there are plenty of legally safe ways to license stock images.

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  46. Istock photos, Getty Images and Google - absolute shame on you all. You are destroying the hard earned careers of dedicated, talented photographers with this underhand, deceitful deal.

    Google, "don't be evil"? Don't make me laugh!

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  47. These images were not GIVEN to Google by the photographers. Getty and Istock sold them for peanuts without the knowledge or the consent of the photographers. Removing copyright info, photographer name and metadata makes it even worse. I would expect such behaviour from Istock and Getty, but Google should REALLY be ashamed!

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  48. I would seriously advise against using any of these images until the copyright holders give their permission, which they definitely won't!

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  49. This is a disgusting deal made by Getty and Google. It is basically theft of copyright but is spun as a wonderful benefit provided by Google. Shame on you Adah Berkovich for promoting such behavior on the part of Google. Shame on you Getty for selling out your photographers!

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  50. Most (all?) of the images here were made available to download without letting know the copyright holders. Legal action is being considered, so I wouldn't use any of these images, not even private.

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  51. Hell of a Deal, the photographer of these images aren't paid proper (if at all), weren't asked for their consent and the copyright info is stripped out of the file. One may come to the conclusion that this is image theft. But wait, some people are making big money with this.

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  52. Fond 3 of my photos. Take your 36$ back and remove my files from this collection now! I do not agree to this deal. No on asked me.
    I have spend 3000$ on this photoshoot and I am not satisfied with your 36$ to use those photos for free.

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  53. It's ridiculous to call this crowd sourced. Images were mostly provided by professional photographers spending thousands in gear, models, props and shoots, and endless hours of time.

    I totally disagree with the distribution of those images to millions of users for free without proper compensation, without credit to the photographer and without their explicit consent.

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  54. Google = THIEF! I am an iStock photographer spending thousands setting up photo shoots. You have stolen them! Desist and take them down immediately. Immoral, reprehensible and unconscionable behaviour. I thought better of you, Google.

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  55. Shame on you, iStock and Google. I feel for the photographers who are affected by this horrible 'deal', without being consented first. This is unethical and a disgusting way of doing business.

    I certainly hope some legal action can be taken against this, because this may never happen again.

    I urge everyone not to download these pictures to avoid legal problems.

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  56. Replies
    1. Sausages indeed my colleague! ;) But with plenty of illegal pepper this time! This whole things sux bigtime Google - fair warning - any use of these images will NOT be tolerated or ignored.

      Delete
  57. IStock and Google, you're stealing our images!

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  58. sounds like it is risky to use these photos. I had seen something similar that the photographer succesfully sued the end users... definate no no to me.

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    1. Yep - if you want to see what can happen read this bloggers story of being sued for use of copyrighted images without the photographer's permission.

      http://www.roniloren.com/blog/2012/7/20/bloggers-beware-you-can-get-sued-for-using-pics-on-your-blog.html

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  59. Shame on you google for encouraging the theft of copyrighted works and endangering everyone who uses these files commercially for copyright infringement lawsuits. You can buy files legally for as little as 25 cents if necesary or use one of the many free files photographers offer from their homepages or with the appropriate license from flickr.

    This is a scam by two greedy companies that believe "crowd sourced" and "user generated" are just "trendy buzzwords" they can throw around for their own profit.

    Shame on you Google, shame on you!!

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  60. Many of these photos, as you can see in the comments, are the property of photographers who never agreed to have their images given away for free millions of times. Let alone for $12. Users should read the EULA before they use these images and know that using them from here hurts the content creators.

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  61. I did not agree to a free redistribution of my images. Getty and Google have acted shamefully to steal my copyright. Users of free images from this program beware as you may be held legally liable.

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  62. I am disgusted to see that Google is involved in such unfair deals

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  63. Nothing crowd sourced about this. I have some photos included here and I have certainly not agreed to this and neither have the models used in these images.

    The same is the case with for all other photographers I have been talking to.

    I think the risk of lawsuits for the end users of these images is very high.

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  64. Getty/Google are stepping on ordinary hard working people here for their own gain. By using these "free" stock images you are taking income out of someones pocket. These images are available for license through the proper channels where you will have protection in your use of the image. Please think about that before downloading these images.

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  65. By using these, you are using images that artists spent money, time, knowledge and effort to create -- and which were given away without their knowledge or consent. The copyright belongs to those artists, NOT to Getty, Google or iStock. They do not own this intellectual property and did not have the consent to give it away as they did.

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  66. Google and Getty (and their subsidiary iStockphoto.com) have seriously blundered on this one big time. The images in questions are NOT theirs - they are the hardworking photographers and artists who spend countless hours creating the work, perfecting it to the high standards required, keywording and uploading with no guarantee of sales.

    At NO time do these contributors hand over copyright to iStock or Getty and as such it is impossible for Google to supply them to their users in the manner they are doing.

    For Getty/iStockphoto to supply to Google these images for use is truly disgusting and unethical. A sad day for a once highly respected company. Without doubt there are lawsuits in the offing.

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  67. This is not fair trade. This is theft. If you use any of these images, you are enabling big corporations who are crapping on individual photographers and artists.

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  68. Many artists have images of their own family members, even small children, now available for free use to the public. These files are supposed to be licensed to commercial buyers who are registered with name and address from professional stock agencies. With a 12 dollar deal Getty and Google are cheating hard working people out of their earnings and endangering model released images. Even worse, the images have been stripped of all exif and copyright data they hold, basically putting them into the public domain as orphaned works.

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  69. If you are a google user please do not use these images. The photographers did not consent to giving away these images and you stand a very real chance of being sued if you do use these images.

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  70. A lot of people think that, just because it's easy to copy a photo they find online, and royalties are small, that makes it okay. Well, some of us make our living 25 cents at a time, off of photo royalties.

    Just because you're only stealing a few cents at a time from me, doesn't make it right for you to do so, and there will be legal consequences. Each theft leads to others, and the dollar amount adds up.

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  71. I will hold Google, Getty, and the end user legally liable for copyright infringement should my images be used. Hope your contract is airtight with Getty, Google - as Getty's own contract between contributors will be torn apart with ease. As for the end user, you are essentially screwed - Getty will likely come after you too. That is the sick irony in all of this.

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    Replies
    1. Agreed - the end user could be royally screwed. Getty is famous for suing the pants of people - even unwitting charities who have used copyrighted images without permission. The images are NOT public domain. As correctly mentioned they have been supplied to Google without any permission being sought from the copyright holders.

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  72. I am a full time stock photographer based in the UK. I find that my work is quite often stolen from the internet and used by commercial organisations without my permission. I have lawyers based in Europe and also the US that bring Copyright Infringers to court on my behalf. If you are caught using images illegally, the cost of paying the license, damages and costs can mount to many thousands of dollars.

    If you plan to use images for a commercial purpose please ensure that you have a legal license to do so.

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  73. Copyright issues have not been respected in this deal between Google and Getty Images. For shame on both companies

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  74. These images are the work of talented photographers who are also the copyright holders, and we are not happy about our hard work being given away for free and without our consent.

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  75. Bad deal all around. I suspect image users are going to eventually get hit for miss-use of copyrighted material. The photographers are missing expected income from sales. Getty and Google made a very bad deal for the rest of us.

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  76. Thanks to whom? the photographers that were misled, and lured into microstock with vague legal agreements. This model further supports the layman's theory that all creative content on the internet is free. Shame on Google and iStock.

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  77. Stop this distribution right now! This is simply theft!

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  78. This "Deal" is not PC, Google. It's abuse of the photographer's work. Is there nobody left with integrity in the upper management?

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  79. Total abuse of copyright! Metadata was stripped out of my photo's. Permission was never given to give away my photo's for free! Legal council has already been obtained. If you use these photo's be aware you are using them without the photographer/copyright holders permission. If I find one of my images in use, I will sue for copyright infringement, as will the other photographers who's images were illegally brokered.
    Shame on you Google for being so naive to think you can buy an image so cheap and give it away free. Getty duped you! The contributors are fighting this to the umpth degree. You should return these images and ask for a refund. This will cost you thousands in legal fees and damages if any of these images are used. It might cost you even if the images aren't used at this point if they aren't returned to the proper copyright holder.
    Signed an Istockphoto/Getty contributor

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  80. All I can say is user beware. Getty will come after you if you do not use image correctly, photographers may get their day in court, and it's just plain wrong to use someones IP in this manner

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  81. Google is going to have some legal causes with the copyright owner.

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  82. It is sad to see that getty and google giving these photographs free. There are photographers trying to earn their livings you know...

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  83. Fuck you getty images! Fuck you google! Fuck you carlye group! Who' s next?

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  84. Getty Images is screwing photographers by making deals behind their backs and paying the photographers pennies for photos and then giving them out for free to everyone. Google shame on you for being part of this deal and devaluing the work of photographers.

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  85. Google, Getty and iStockphoto should all be ashamed of how they have abused trust and treated copyright images as if they were in the public domain. Google - do no evil, indeed. Live by your own motto. You have done evil to hardworking photographers by giving away images, you have done evil to trusting users by failing to point out the legal implications they face by wrongly using copyrighted images. You have done evil to every artist, photographer, software company, writer, movie maker, musician that makes their living on copyrighted intellectual property by devaluing their work. How dare you perpetuate the belief that it is OK to use something found on the internet without compensation to the owner as if it was your own. What you're doing is akin to offering free downloads of movies, music and software. And Getty and iStock... backstabbing is the only thing that comes to mind. Anyone that believes in fair trade, believes in political correctness, believes in treating others as they would want to be treated should think long and hard about using these images from a moral point of view and consider what future legal implications may come of it before downloading.

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  86. Istock/Getty/Google have plenty of money to fight any battles in court that may come of this. If you use these images from here i hope you have plenty of money too. If so save yourself the future headache, do the only morally decent honest thing, support the creators of the images just head over to Istock and licence them proper. It's easy to do.

    Regards Feverstockphoto

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  87. Shame on you Google. Shame on you Getty. Shame on you iStock.
    You have no regard for the copyright owners of these images. You obtained them in a dodgy deal for next to nothing without the consent of the artist.

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  88. I understand it's nice to have "free" images. But these images are not crowdsourced from some hobbyist Google users who are just happy to share their images for nothing. Most of the images are the work of professional photographers, and the images are available here WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT.

    Royalty free images are shot for the purpose of bringing back the money (and hopefully some profit to pay the bills) invested in the production of the photograph (models, props, travel, editing and so on), and this kind of deal totally destroys that goal for these particular images. It can take many years for a photograph to break even, and photographers receving 12 dollars for unlimited redistribution here is a disgrace. All the parties involved (iStockphoto, Getty and Google) should be ashamed and either negotiate to buy rights to the images or remove the content.

    PLEASE NOTE: These images are still copyrighted to the photographer, even if Google has removed (for reasons unknown) the copyright data. Also, the images with people are not model released for use on Google drive.

    Best regards,
    Kari Salmi, iStockphoto contributor

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  89. 5000 new stock images in Google Drive thanks to who exactly? Oh yeah, hard working artists who were totally unaware you stole their images.

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  90. Hard work by these photographers should not be free! If you use these photos, know that your taking food off their table, and all their hard work has been abused by Google, and you the end user of these photos. These photos were not approved by the creators of the images, and was made by a bad deal by their agents. We are asking you to not use them and write Google and let them know that abusing people of all types is not tolerated!
    Thank you

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  91. This is theft from rightful owners of intellectual property who work hard to create commercial art to make a living. Beyond the legal issues, ask yourself an ethical question before you use an image from here, do I support theft?

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  92. These images can also be found at istockphoto.com & gettyimages.com. Anybody who is interested in using one or more of these images for their commercial projects should go there and properly license them.

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  93. Getty is treating their artist like third rate slaves. These images are illegal and should be taken down by Google ASAP.

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  94. Google users beware: Using images from Google Drive may result in lawsuits and costs can mount to thousands of dollars. Google got these images from Getty without proper permission of the copyright owners.

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  95. I have 2 images on Google drive. I feel angry and betrayed by Istock-Getty.
    Getty go to hell.

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  96. What's been done here is totally unethical.

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  97. Getty contributor relations manager saying getty didn't break their contract with contributors. Go fuck yourself claudia mijaire, you lying sack of shit. Show me where in the contract it states Getty images agrees to license your image to another party, so that they may freely distribute your image to the world with no restrictions. Shameful woman. See you in court getty, istock revolt!

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  98. Google: "dont be evil. be an asshole."

    Getty is fucking photographers on their asses.

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  99. All pictures in google docs are used without any permission of photographers!!!! It is not LEGAL...everybody who want to use that content have to know that!!!
    All copyrights belong to the photographers. Lawyers will be super full of job with this issue!

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  100. Geety and Google are thieves and everybody will use this photos is their accomplice.

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  101. I'm an IS/Getty photographer and we were neither aked nor informed about this "Deal" which goes far beyond the legal Agreements we have with our agency/distributor. These images are not crowdsourced they were taken without consent or knowledge from people who make a living as a photorapher for a pittance of 6-12$. This is more of a"buy out" of an image (which would cost more than 10000 $ in the industry) cause the image is "done" after this. Think of this google and stop it because this may go to court in one or the other way. Too many people are screwed, other agencies who try to do what an agency is for - included.

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  102. I have an appointment tomorrow morning at 10.00 with a UK copyright lawyer. Spoke with her yesterday (Saturday) and she is already preparing draft submissions for a County Court ex-parti hearing against Getty Inc. I think I am going to get very wealthy during 2013! Thanks to Getty compensation and punative awards from any Google customer that tries to use any of my images from this site.

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  103. Shameful behaviour by GettyImages, Istockphoto and Google

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  104. As a contributor, I am outraged by this deal between Getty/iStock and Google. It was done without my knowledge or permission. I do not support it. This deal represents a dark day for Google and all photographers who make a living selling their work. There can be no justification for a company to freely give away copyrighted work, without the owner's permission.

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  105. These Deals have been done by people with a total lack of integrity. You don't own the rights of these images and therefore have no legally right to redistribute in this way no matter which words have been signed. Period.

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  106. Just because you sign something, doesnt mean you will not be sued. This goes for this deal and for the contributor agreement we signed with getty.

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  107. This is an insult. These images have copyright and the owners were not correctly paid. Getty Images only represents the photographers and has no right to give away these images, no matter the "deal" between the company and Google.

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  108. We photographers are upset because we did not give our stock agencies permission to do this. The big companies make the big bucks and the photographers are cheated!

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  109. I can understand why Getty/Istock would do this - they are both greedy corporate b*****ds who couldn't care less - I thought better of google until now though :(

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  110. Disgusting move by both Getty AND Goggle! Wondering why there has not been any comments made by a goggle admin yet.

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  111. Istock getty and Google must stop immediately this mafia traffic and send back to the contributors the money they stole.

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  112. Istock getty and Google must stop immediately this mafia traffic and send back to the contributors the money they stole.

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  113. photographers... I feel sorry for you but if the images are here, they will be downloaded and used. Nobody will read this blog, and even if they do, no one will care.
    My advice to you is unite and then negotiate with Google/Getty etc. That is your only hope.
    Do you not have some sort of a union? if not form one!

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  114. Whilst I can tell that the photographers are incensed, as a writer this doesn't surprise me one little bit.
    I wrote an article about this facility, but have since added a caveat to using the image as a comment.
    Guys - at the end of the day, we all use Google to drive traffic to our online content. Where would we be without Google? You be lucky to get that $12 at all.
    As a Google-Authorship writer, I can tell you my content gets snaffled every day, wrung through an article spinner and turned out as crap. It's one of the risks of using the WWW as your store front.
    Explained in more detail, here: https://plus.google.com/116035482820545649928/posts/7LSsPLaqUFs - oh, you'll need a Google account to view it, I think; it's on Google Plus.
    Thanks for your time - I know you're gonna shout me down, but it had to be said, sorry...

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    Replies
    1. @ Jason

      You don't have a clue...our agency, for which we have a contractual agreement, secretly sold our images to Google for their own benefit, so that our images can be given for free by Google. By doing so, these images became worthless since they can no longer be licensed for anything if you can get them for free. Furthermore, that same agency, Getty, have announced to continue on with similar deals which will destroy the work of commercial photographers...I don't see anything good about this. Many photographers will simply abandon ship and look for other agencies before their work get destroyed.

      Delete
    2. Jason, if your IP is stolen, it's a bad thing, no matter if words, music or pictures. That this happens to you as a writer is not ok but it's not justifying to steal other IP. In this case it's more of someone grabbing the articles you wrote, making a deal with some BIG fish, big money changes hands and you get paid peanuts. After all you just found out that it is happening this way, because your agent / distributor (which you PAY for taking care of your IP and SELL it) didn't bother to tell you that he made an agreement which goes FAR beyond the legal contracts you have with him. We ARE betrayed.

      Delete
    3. "we all use Google to drive traffic to our online content. Where would we be without Google.."
      Yes. But it's still not reason why to give them anything [almost] for free.

      Delete
    4. Jason, comparing this situation with writing it would be this: You write a book, giving it to a publishing house, expecting it to be sold (hopefully) thousands of times, for each sale you get a small amount from your publishing house.

      Now your publishing house decides to give a copy to Amazon with the license to publish it for free as an e-book, gives you $12 and tells you they are proud to have made such a great deal.

      This is not about random pictures published on Flickr. This is neither about the Google Image Search we use for promotion (that's why we put watermarks on our images).

      Delete
    5. IF there would have been backlinks to our content at IS/Getty it would benefit us as you discribed "drawing traffic to our site". They even found this not necessary. The copyright information was removed out of the file. This is legally more than questionable.

      Delete
    6. You, as a writer, of all, should understand the pain of the photographers caught up on the bad end of this deal. Sounds like you got hit by copyright theft and now lashes out to photographers who have every right to complain. These images here are some of the top sellers from these photographers, selling at 100 dollar per download. Its the same you write a book, it becomes your best seller, and all of a sudden it stops selling because your publisher made a deal with Google to put the book up on Google Books for free and no restrictions, and you got 12 dollar for it. I dont believe for one second you wouldnt feel bad about it. And you cant possibly think this is normal practice just because its on the WWW.

      Delete
    7. You, as a writer, of all, should understand the pain of the photographers caught up on the bad end of this deal. Sounds like you got hit by copyright theft and now lashes out to photographers who have every right to complain. These images here are some of the top sellers from these photographers, selling at 100 dollar per download. Its the same you write a book, it becomes your best seller, and all of a sudden it stops selling because your publisher made a deal with Google to put the book up on Google Books for free and no restrictions, and you got 12 dollar for it. I dont believe for one second you wouldnt feel bad about it. And you cant possibly think this is normal practice just because its on the WWW.

      Delete
  115. @ Jason

    You don't understand. This isn't just about stuff being snaffled by Internet users. This is about our official agent, with whom we have contracts and through whom our content is sold, making a deal with Google to give our images away without our consent.

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  116. Please Google "Don't be evil". In my opinion the copyright holders of these images signed up to sell royalty free licenses via IStock and other similar sites on a per license basis, not to have their work given away for free to millions of users. They have been betrayed by their agent, please don't be a party to that!

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  117. Shame on you Getty, shame on you!

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  118. Wow, does the word ‘copyright’ no longer mean anything? It’s a really sad day when contributors’ very own agent... the very corporate entity they have contracted with, pay and trust to protect and sell licences of their work, end up shafting them by making shady deals that give away their intellectual properly for a lousy $12... when they’re probably worth around $10K. This deal goes way beyond the contract terms and will most likely be deemed illegal. Both contract and copyright laws have likely been infringed here.

    Basic agency law - iStock/Getty as the agent is supposed to act in the best interest of the principal (the contributors’). Giving away the contributors’ intellectual property without their consent is absolutely NOT acting in their best interest and therefore they should be found to have acted negligently.

    I’ve always thought of iStock/Getty as dirty players and am usually not surprised when they betray their content providers (which is often of late) but this more than crosses the line. I hope many people sue the pants off them.

    But Google? You’re supposed to be one of the good guys! Please make this right and stop this nonsense now!

    I also urge anyone not to use these images because something that is perceived as ‘free’ may end up costing you thousands.

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  119. The only way any one will get the most truthful answer from either of these companies, will be during the discovery phase of a trial. That will be in the form of the special premium access agreement that was entered into between Getty and Google.

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  120. The greed of rich corporate companies such as Getty and Google has certainly taken a appalling turn for the worse as they have secretly given away thousands of photos whose copyright belong to the individual photgraphers and artists who created them.

    Please do not download these images and help us send a strong message to these corporate heads to let them know that we will not tolerate this obcene theft.


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  121. I read that these images were donated or crowd sourced, but on other places there are lots of photographers saying these images were gotten from Getty Images without consent of the photographers. Google can you verify that someone has the rights to use these?

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    Replies
    1. The "crowd sourcing" just means that google users were told to go "shopping" at thinkstock (owned by Getty images and containing many images from istock -which is also owned by Getty). But instead of buying images they could just tell google which ones they would like to use for free. Google collected this list of images and bought them from Getty. They also bought high end, high quality images from Getty that normally sell for $60-$300 for a single use. In their agreement with Getty, Getty allowed them to give the images away on this site. The professional photographers who produced these images were paid $12 per image. These images can no longer sell on stock sites and the photographers were only paid $12/image. Usually an extended license deal like this should be in the $1000s if not $10,000 per image and the deals never include having high resolution photos given away endlessly on the internet. Google has also stripped the copyright information for the photos. The photos are still copyrighted by the photographer and if these photos are used in ads and the photographer sues the photographer will win. I would think long and hard before using these free images. Google can protect itself with corporate lawyers but can you? And do you want to support corporations that violated their contracts with their contributors?

      Delete
  122. You can use them, but you will get prompt dmca notices and infringement letters. Notice how Google doesn't offer any copyright information on the images ... yet tells you to check copyright information for usage. Good luck, lawyers are swarming and it will be end users that won't be able to afford this in the end.

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  123. Is this balls-up totally at Getty's feet, cutting a deal outside the remit of their contractual agreement with photographers? Who stripped the metadata and valuable stock images orphans? How could Google even think it okay to give away images stripped of copyright info? This is going to cost G and G in bad publicity and a good chance some serious $ too.

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  124. This is awful and very unethical if any of my images are in this lot I shall be furious! I am a Getty Images contributor and I trusted Getty to handle my images for sale not to give them away in this fashion. Shame on you Getty and Google.

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  125. Please view here (http://www.istockphoto.com/forum_messages.php?threadid=350491&page=1) and let your conscience guide you.

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  126. where can we send google a complaint directly about this?

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    Replies
    1. http://investor.google.com/corporate/message.html
      http://www.google.com/about/company/facts/management/

      directors@google.com

      Delete
  127. Unfortunately after spending 22000.00 dollars last year on photography equipment , started to sell my photos on Istock. Put the money aside I'm sorry to time I spent on each photo. Shoot, organize, edit and submit takes quite bit time. Especially comparing to other agencies in Istock takes about 10 times longer. I don't think Istock people ever submit their images using their system or compare themselves other companies systems. Then they will give you 15% from the sale. Yes 15% other 85% goes to themselves. I agree they have people and servers and expenses like lawyers but how about our expenses and time. I guess we should be happy with the results as a photographer. You would think by this time Istock came to a point that they can afford to pay better to their contributors but seeing this type of actions from them makes you wonder what direction they are going. Get 12 dollars for a one time fee and give away your work to whole world. So far I have not heard anything good about Istock relationships with their contributors. At the other hand Google is pretty conscientiousness about intellectual property but will there any action coming from them regarding this issue is questionable.

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  128. Unfortunately after spending 22000.00 dollars last year on photography equipment , started to sell my photos on Istock. Put the money aside I'm sorry to time I spent on each photo. Shoot, organize, edit and submit takes quite bit time. Especially comparing to other agencies in Istock takes about 10 times longer. I don't think Istock people ever submit their images using their system or compare themselves other companies systems. Then they will give you 15% from the sale. Yes 15% other 85% goes to themselves. I agree they have people and servers and expenses like lawyers but how about our expenses and time. I guess we should be happy with the results as a photographer. You would think by this time Istock came to a point that they can afford to pay better to their contributors but seeing this type of actions from them makes you wonder what direction they are going. Get 12 dollars for a one time fee and give away your work to whole world. So far I have not heard anything good about Istock relationships with their contributors. At the other hand Google is pretty conscientiousness about intellectual property but will there any action coming from them regarding this issue is questionable.

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  129. Getty were disgraceful in their behaviour here. Google should terminate the deal and Getty should be boycotted by both photographers and clients. What they have done is disgusting and complete abuse of their powers.

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  130. http://www.petapixel.com/2013/01/16/google-strikes-controversial-licensing-deal-with-getty-images/

    http://graphicleftovers.com/blog/creatives-stunning-revolt-big-bad-business/

    http://www.aphotoeditor.com/2013/01/16/getty-hands-google-users-free-commercial-images-photographers-get-12/

    http://www.microstockposts.com/photographers-plan-to-remove-images-from-istockphoto/

    http://www.selling-stock.com/Article/free-images-from-gettyistock-on-google

    http://www.selling-stock.com/Article/istock-provides-google-drive-explanation

    http://farrellbrian.com/2013/01/16/why-you-shouldnt-use-google-drive-stock-images/

    http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1181785/0

    http://www.alamy.com/forums/default.aspx?g=posts&t=13554

    http://mccomberphoto.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/continuing-woes-for-photographers-distributed-by-getty-images/

    http://www.photoq.nl/articles/nieuws/actueel/2013/01/16/big-deal-12-dollar-foto-voor-google-gebruik/

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57420551-93/who-owns-your-files-on-google-drive/

    http://thenextweb.com/google/2012/08/09/google-wants-you-to-help-stock-its-google-drive-stock-images-library/

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  131. This deal is gonna be the end of istock if it stays as it is. It will probably be one of the most spectacular corporate suicides ever. Oh yeah, I am sure Getty management is watching all these in their offices, eating popcorn and laughing.

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  132. This is outrageous, once again, greed rears its ugly head!

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  133. Spread the news and get the momentum going…

    http://www.denispepin.com/google-and-getty-licensing-deal

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  134. It seems a very dirty way to steal the work of photographers. They have sought permission from the professionals so that their pictures are here. Looting ... I recommend the boycott.

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  135. Just pulled my istock portfolio before they make it worthless. It took tonnes of time and money to get those pictures and I won't see them given away for free.

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  136. I have two images in this scheme that I wasn’t paid $12. Never mind!
    This is the message from Getty to 80k mad as hell IS contributors:

    We (Getty/IS ) are so powerful so we can do whatever we want and you’re nothing but poor miserable contributors depending on us. We need $$$ we need millions, we need billions no,no, we need trillions $$$ and we will do everything to increase our profit. We are going to make a deal(if is’s necessary) even with the devil just to make our profit bigger and bigger.

    Looks like they are trying to commit business suicide. IS used to be such a nice place. R.I.P. Let it be

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  137. I have two images in this scheme that I wasn’t paid $12. Never mind!
    This is the message from Getty to 80k mad as hell IS contributors:

    We (Getty/IS ) are so powerful so we can do whatever we want and you’re nothing but poor miserable contributors depending on us. We need $$$ we need millions, we need billions no,no, we need trillions $$$ and we will do everything to increase our profit. We are going to make a deal(if is’s necessary) even with the devil just to make our profit bigger and bigger.

    Looks like they are trying to commit business suicide. IS used to be such a nice place. R.I.P. Let it be

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  138. copyright theft from bloggers and pinterest is one thing.... copyright theft from the biggest web companies something totaly different. I wonder if there is any lawyer out there willing to organize and do a mass case against Getty and Google? As it looks like right now thousands of photographer have being hurt by this...

    So far none of my pictures have been found.

    Both google, getty and those using those pictures should think twice right now

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  139. Eat all the dicks, Google. All of them.

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  140. IStock and Google, you're stealing our images and giving them away for free! Shame on you!

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  141. Getty and Google may well not hold up as none of the copyright holders agreed to this virtual giveaway of their work.

    What happend to Don´t be evil?

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  142. I got paid only $6.00 for each photo!

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  143. http://www.microstockgroup.com/istockphoto-com/google-giving-photos-away-free-for-commercial-use-and-istock-agrees/msg293838/?topicseen#new

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  144. A site linking to these images got a take down notice from getty's lawyers. Are they really able to be used? :)

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  145. Google does not have a legal right to re- distribute these images for free as the creators of these images did not give that right to Getty images/ istock . Law suits will ensue over this i think.

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