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Author Topic: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing  (Read 39352 times)

AlterEgo

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #100 on: May 08, 2015, 12:34:41 pm »

Sure. You might end up with a multi-million dollar whistleblower award and protection from retaliation. And your boss loses his job and most likely goes to prison.
only if the law was broken - in that case no laws were broken
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AlterEgo

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #101 on: May 08, 2015, 12:35:40 pm »

You do have a right to be incensed and you do have a right to speak out publicly. At least where I'm from you do.


yes, he did not do anything illegal - but nobody was saying that he did, neither anything illegal was in the offer...
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AlterEgo

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #102 on: May 08, 2015, 12:38:39 pm »

The latest trend: hiring no photographer
you might cross the line where you start thinking that market owes you anything, no - it doesn't...
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Isaac

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #103 on: May 08, 2015, 02:23:26 pm »

Any businessman who embarrasses his clients publicly isn't going to have any pretty quickly.  And his big mouth will keep prospective customers away too.

Alan, you seem to be in agreement with Pat Pope -- "By writing this open letter, I'm obviously committing professional suicide when it comes to ever working with you again, and probably it won't do my reputation any good within the music industry to be seen as troublemaker."

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Alan Klein

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #104 on: May 08, 2015, 03:34:12 pm »

Quote
Alan, you seem to be in agreement with Pat Pope -- "By writing this open letter, I'm obviously committing professional suicide when it comes to ever working with you again, and probably it won't do my reputation any good within the music industry to be seen as troublemaker."

Reminds me of the joke about the cowboy from the desert town in the Southwest.  So he's sitting at a bar sipping some whiskey and suddenly jumps off the bar stool, strips down naked and runs out of the saloon down the street and into the desert. There he jumps bare skin and all into a huge, spiny cactus.

When the townsfolk catch up with him, they incredulously ask him why would anyone in their right mind do such a thing.

The cowboy, moaning and groaning, whimpered back, "Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time."

Isaac

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #105 on: May 08, 2015, 03:45:00 pm »

Please show that Pat Pope is moaning and groaning, and whimpering back.

What puzzles me is that you've made so many comments which afaict seem just to repeat what Pat Pope already acknowledged in that first open letter.
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jjj

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #106 on: May 09, 2015, 04:24:02 pm »

People speaking out publicly, or as you call it having "hysterical public reaction/tantrums" is why women can vote, why we have a minimum wage, why we don't use child labor, why we have labeling on food, why we have representative government. For every small step we have taken toward a more just world there has been some outspoke hero that has made themselves heard over a chorus of voices, like yours, telling them they should just being quiet.
Indeed, the people objecting to someone making a stand have all benefited in one way or another from previous principled people willing to stand tall and try and make a difference.
It also seems that those without any experience or knowledge of modern day pro photography are the ones complaining loudest about Pope's refusal to be exploited anymore.
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Tradition is the Backbone of the Spinele

Justinr

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #107 on: May 10, 2015, 02:09:33 pm »

Very noble.  Do you publish your complaints about your boss and try to embarrass him publicly?   You certainly have the right to do that.   How long do you think you'll have a job?  All your ex-worker friends will pat you on the shoulder telling you what a hero you are. 


But if we all acted with the same courage of our convictions as Pope then there wouldn't be any need to go creeping round employers/clients as they'd know the score and we wouldn't be faced with this sort of situation on anything near as regular a basis. I doubt that it's done him any harm in the long run and may even have done him some good.
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #108 on: May 16, 2015, 12:09:36 pm »

But if we all acted with the same courage of our convictions as Pope then there wouldn't be any need to go creeping round employers/clients as they'd know the score and we wouldn't be faced with this sort of situation on anything near as regular a basis...

Correct.

And here is another example how a multi-gazillion dollars company wants it for free:

Please Reply #yes to Give Us Unlimited Rights to Your Photo

MarkM

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Alan Klein

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #110 on: May 16, 2015, 01:43:30 pm »

I think using a non-pro photo for no monetary compensation is different  than trying to use a pro's photo.  An amateur may be very happy with the notoriety, thus companies can get away with it.  You can complain about it.  But as long as people are willing to do it, company's will continue to ask.  This is where convenient, ubiquitous, digital and well captured amateur photos have taken us - for right or wrong.  It's affected the pro market.  But so has many other modern inventions.  A good friend of mine, an illustrator, lost his job because of computers and Photoshop.  Clients didn't want to pay him the high prices he demanded (and deserved) for decades when a computer nerd could do similar work digitally at 1/10th the cost. 

Of course, this is making it hard on pros like Pope.  But the discussion here is not whether Pope should get paid.  I happen to think he should.  It's just the way he handled it that could have been done better.

Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #111 on: May 16, 2015, 02:37:45 pm »

...But as long as people are willing to do it, company's will continue to ask...

I am going to remove my trained-economist hat for a moment and look at that from a simple, human, common sense perspective (or at least my perspective). There is something majorly obscene when a multi-gazillion company wants to exploit such a common human weakness (vanity). The company spends gazillion of dollars on advertising, but not willing to pay a microscopic fraction of it to the photographer?

There are companies with a social consciousness, a basic sense of morality, and a simple human decency, and there are those with none. Take, for example, Canon: they paid $10K for a license to use a single photo of mine, exclusively, for one year. That in itself is highly commendable. But look what happened next: they approached my agency for additional use of the same photo and paid $1.5K for it. What was that additional use? Internal marketing material. Internal. Which means I would have probably never found out about it. And even if I did, I would have assumed it is covered by the already generous original license. That is what morality is, doing the right thing even when no one is looking. Kudos to Canon!

Nick Walker

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #112 on: May 16, 2015, 02:39:05 pm »

I think using a non-pro photo for no monetary compensation is different 

Really?

Justinr

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #113 on: May 16, 2015, 02:43:40 pm »

I think using a non-pro photo for no monetary compensation is different  than trying to use a pro's photo.  An amateur may be very happy with the notoriety, thus companies can get away with it.  You can complain about it.  But as long as people are willing to do it, company's will continue to ask.  This is where convenient, ubiquitous, digital and well captured amateur photos have taken us - for right or wrong.  It's affected the pro market.  But so has many other modern inventions.  A good friend of mine, an illustrator, lost his job because of computers and Photoshop.  Clients didn't want to pay him the high prices he demanded (and deserved) for decades when a computer nerd could do similar work digitally at 1/10th the cost. 

Of course, this is making it hard on pros like Pope.  But the discussion here is not whether Pope should get paid.  I happen to think he should.  It's just the way he handled it that could have been done better.

How does one define a pro photographer nowadays?

Since I started calling myself a writer I've never been busier with the camera!
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Alan Klein

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #114 on: May 16, 2015, 03:07:38 pm »

Quote
Quote from: Alan Klein on Today at 01:43:30 PM
I think using a non-pro photo for no monetary compensation is different
Quote
Really?
Yes.  It's different to the photographer.  A pro earns a living from what he does; an amateur does not.  So the amateur may be more concerned with vanity or other non-monetary reasons for getting their picture published.   If they're happy, who are we to judge?  Of course, I understand that waters down the market for the pro.  But that isn't the company's fault.  The industry and technology and market have changed. 

How many here cried about all the Kodak and independent film processing company employees who lost their jobs because of digital photography?  Did you run out and get a film camera and buy film?   Or do you use a digital camera so you can get "free" shots so you didn't have to pay  film manufacturing and film processing companies?  Haven't you acted in your own best interest too?   Not that you were wrong either.  Again, it's because the industry and technology has changed. 

 

Justinr

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #115 on: May 16, 2015, 03:31:48 pm »


Yes.  It's different to the photographer.  A pro earns a living from what he does; an amateur does not.  So the amateur may be more concerned with vanity or other non-monetary reasons for getting their picture published.   If they're happy, who are we to judge?  Of course, I understand that waters down the market for the pro.  But that isn't the company's fault.  The industry and technology and market have changed. 

How many here cried about all the Kodak and independent film processing company employees who lost their jobs because of digital photography?  Did you run out and get a film camera and buy film?   Or do you use a digital camera so you can get "free" shots so you didn't have to pay  film manufacturing and film processing companies?  Haven't you acted in your own best interest too?   Not that you were wrong either.  Again, it's because the industry and technology has changed. 

 

At the end of the day a photo is a product and if there is a demand for that product then it has a value. That value will vary but nonetheless any attempt to obtain that product for ones own benefit without wanting to pass on proportion of that benefit to the producer is tantamount to theft.
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Alan Klein

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #116 on: May 16, 2015, 04:26:59 pm »

The vanity "value" to an amateur may be enough to just stroke his ego.   A price is established by what a willing buyer and willing seller agree too.  Unless there's duress, it's not theft or tantamount to theft.  A photographer just has to say "no".  If it's a one-of-a-kind photo, than it would be worth monetary value to the buyer.  But if the buyer can get a similar photo for the cost of "vanity", than that's all the photo is worth, despite what you think it's worth.   

This may sound cruel, but that's how it works.  Better the photographer understand the market and adjust his game plan to create a photography niche that he could sell to and make money.  Tilting windmills or shoveling s**t against the tide is no way for a businessman to operate. 

MarkM

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #117 on: May 16, 2015, 05:58:26 pm »

The vanity "value" to an amateur may be enough to just stroke his ego.   A price is established by what a willing buyer and willing seller agree too.  Unless there's duress, it's not theft or tantamount to theft.  A photographer just has to say "no".  If it's a one-of-a-kind photo, than it would be worth monetary value to the buyer.  But if the buyer can get a similar photo for the cost of "vanity", than that's all the photo is worth, despite what you think it's worth.    

This may sound cruel, but that's how it works.  Better the photographer understand the market and adjust his game plan to create a photography niche that he could sell to and make money.  Tilting windmills or shoveling s**t against the tide is no way for a businessman to operate.  

I think it's unquestionably true that to survive as a photographer you need to have a product that is more than a typical amateur can consistently achieve. There's a lot of ways to do this: you can have a unique vision, unusual access to subjects or locations, consistently reproduce great results on demand — something, anything to be competitive.

Pope seems to have this. He has images that cannot easily be reproduced and he's made these kind of images consistently over time. Still, the band has decided that however the market has valued amateur photos, should also define the value of his clearly professional images.

What makes Pope's argument so powerful is that he's not just complaining that someone asked for a freebee — but that this band organized their entire book project on the assumption that they would need a $0 budget for photography, that they're not paying for photography even though they clearly need it and need it to be good. It's only icing on this cake that the band has been so outspoken about musicians, who face similar market forces, getting screwed by people expecting free material.

One more point —
Just because the market creates a value or lack of value in something does not absolve people from ethical responsibilities when it comes to playing a part in that market. The band understands this when it comes to music — if we want good music, we need to pay good musicians. I have no doubt that the market would respond favorably to child labour, as it does in other parts of the world, and it would value it cheaply (as it does in other parts of the world). You would find desperate sellers and buyers willing to take advantage of this desperation. To simply say it's 'cruel, but that's how it works' is to relinquish personable responsibility and ignore the power we have to act collectively. Another option is to lobby for education and change. It's not always tilting at windmills — a fact proven by the lack of a child labour market in the US despite obvious utility.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2015, 08:15:30 pm by MarkM »
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Nick Walker

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #118 on: May 16, 2015, 06:48:31 pm »


  Or do you use a digital camera so you can get "free" shots so you didn't have to pay  film manufacturing and film processing companies? 
 


Flagship digital Pro digital cameras, I started with the Nikon D1, cost on average 3-4 times more than a a comparable film camera. Film and processing costs were met by commissioning clients.

No matter how slick and knowledgeable at processing and archiving RAW digital files, digital sports imagery (processing images) involves a brutal amount of time compared to film - film was left to a pro lab which meant more time could be spent taking pictures at the event and/or accepting other work.

You are falling into the trap of thinking that digital photography is cheaper than film, nothing could be further from the truth.

Justinr

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Re: You sold 17 million albums and you want to pay me nothing
« Reply #119 on: May 16, 2015, 07:00:56 pm »

Answered wrong post.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2015, 07:02:28 pm by Justinr »
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