Getty to sell Flickr pictures
THE GETTY agency announced in June that it would be selling licenses to use photos uploaded
to "photo-sharing" site www.flickr.com,
which is owned by Yahoo.
All of the small random sample of images that the Freelance checked were offered on a
"royalty-free" licence: UK users pay from £15 up to £400-odd, apparently
depending only on the number of bytes in the downloaded file, for an unlimited licence to do what
they will for the entire term of copyright.
On the one hand, this is welcome as recognition that Flickr is not (necessarily) a source of free
pictures. On the other, it's a further commoditisation of photography.
- Never having uploaded a photo to Flickr until we tested the system, the Freelance was
interested to discover that the default for an uploaded photo is (now?) "all rights reserved".
That could help avoid the problems encountered by Texan Justin Wong, who found a photo he'd uploaded used in
a mobile phone advert on (we paraphrase) every bus shelter in Australia.