I was recently mortified to see this picture, taken by my husband of my lips for promotion of my business, was stolen from my instagram and used for commercial gain by Sogeti Labs.
This infringement of my copyright completely outraged me, how dare a large business prey on innocent users of social media?
I put this photo up on instagram only a month ago, and was outraged to see it appear in an article on the Sogeti blog:
I contacted the company via Twitter, Linkedin and sent them numerous emails. Fortunately they responded within 24 hours and removed the image immediately.
Where are we heading?
However this behaviour is rife in the digital world and completely unacceptable. Where are we heading? Has photography, makeup and art been so de-valued that businesses think they can just cherry pick our images for their commercial gain?
What to do if you feel your copyright has been infringed:
- Contact the business or individual directly.
- Highlight the infringement on social media, this is a powerful way to get the infringement in the public domain
- If the image was stolen from social media, report it. In my instance, I reported the stolen image to instagram
- Usually this is enough to ensure immediate action, but if the problem persists, you may need to seek legal advice
- Legal action is a lengthy and expensive process, especially in the age where images are copied and used world-wide, so I advise a private correspondence with the infringer before proceeding to sue.