Having your images stolen and used against your will has all but become the norm for many working photographers. One gig photographer who confronted the record label editing and using her images, however, was greeted with insults as they told her she “doesn’t have the portfolio to back up [her] prices.”
Canadian photographer Adrienne Row-Smith was recently enlisted to photograph bands for Monkey Goose Magazine. All was well until she later discovered the images had been taken from the magazine’s website, without first having asked her permission. The record label not only stole the photos, but had edited them differently, removed her watermark, and had shared them across their website and social pages without credit.
Row-Smith told PetaPixel:
I had reached out to the band first, asking them to politely remove it since they had violated my copyright by editing them. Whomever I was talking to was more than happy to remove the photos, which did not actually happen, and then proceeded to ask me how much I charge to get high-resolution copies for social media that they could use.
She says she quoted them $50 – a more than reasonable fee, I’m sure we’ll all agree – but never actually heard back from them afterward. The images remained live on the label and band’s official accounts, despite her request to remove them.
This is where things took a nasty turn. A text exchange shows an angry label rep calling Row-Smith “greedy” and “disrespectful,” while claiming the level of her portfolio means she has no right to demand $50 per photo. They also resorted to the classic exposure line, writing: “If you think charging bands to give you free publicity is going to get you anywhere, you have another thing coming.”
Although Row-Smith declined to name the record label in question, the ever-reliable Twitterverse has outed Heretic Records as the culprit – although they’ve since de-activated their entire social media presence.
Lead image credit: mikky koopac from Pexels