brettdespain
Posts: 126
Joined: Wed May 18, 2005 5:40 am

To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 2:09 am

All right everyone. Here's your chance to vent your feelings. Perhaps this topic has been discussed before. But, let me add my two cents worth and then I'll turn it over to all of you for your opinions.

After having one of my photos "lifted/stolen" from A.net and then published in a magazine, I have made the decision to watermark all of my photos. I try to put them in places that are more discreet, but after having put several watermarks in the sky I've become aware at how easy it is to photoshop those out.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brett B. Despain



So now I've started putting watermarks in areas of the photo that would be very difficult to erase. I try to put them in areas that won't detract from the photo, like this example of the watermark at the bottom of the image.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brett B. Despain



However, there are certain shots that don't lend themselves to having a watermark at the bottom or top because it would be too easy to just crop those areas out and "steal" the image. Hence I put the watermark in the middle of the image.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brett B. Despain



Don't get me wrong, I don't want to have these watermarks in my images at all, but experience has taught me that if I want to keep sharing these images with everyone, it's something I have to do to keep prying hands off. I'm more than happy to have everyone use my images for private use (screensavers, school projects etc.). But commercial use, always requires prior permission and adding a watermark is one of the few ways we can protect ourselves.

What do you think?
-Brett

[Edited 2006-01-19 18:14:33]
V1...Rotate.
 
Psych
Posts: 2944
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2004 1:17 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 3:52 am

Hi Brett.

You are right- this has been discussed a lot. But always good to return to an important topic.

I have complete sympathy for the argument about protecting images, but my bottom line is that watermarks spoil the experience of viewing the image, wherever they are placed. A beautiful shot like yours of the contrail cannot look as good with anything added, however discreet. I recall viewing another shot recently that was - in my opinion - ruined by the watermark. But I can't recall which one it was just now - I just immediately closed the page after seeing it was watermarked.

I don't know what the answer is. I know First Class members get to see photos without the watermark - but if you are a determined thief there's nothing stopping anyone joining up to do that. I would argue that all participating photographers on the site should have that privilege - a benefit of sharing your work with the site - but then again the only time I am aware of a photo of mine being pinched, it was by another A.net member.

Personally I take the risk. What I would like to see would be evidence to potential thieves on the front page that, if discovered, they will be successfully prosecuted - by the site, not just the individual. But I don't think that is a viable reality.

All the best.

Paul
 
APFPilot1985
Posts: 1840
Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 12:51 pm

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 3:56 am

Quoting Psych (Reply 1):
don't know what the answer is. I know First Class members get to see photos without the watermark - but if you are a determined thief there's nothing stopping anyone joining up to do that. I would argue that all participating photographers on the site should have that privilege - a benefit of sharing your work with the site - but then again the only time I am aware of a photo of mine being pinched, it was by another A.net member.

Sadly in its current incarnation the watermark is pointless. When the idea was originally proposed I was very much in favor of it. I don't use it on my images but I support those who do. However, now that it has been put in to effect, with it being invisible to First Class Members all it does is ruin the shot. It provides no protection as for a small fee payable to Airliners you can steal all of the shots that you want. I think that it should be re programmed so that the watermark is visible to all if the photographer selects to use it.

_Reid
Stand Up and Be Counted Visit Site Related to Voice your opinion
 
JeffM
Posts: 7569
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 3:32 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 5:06 am

Adding to what Reid said.....It also does not apply to any of your shots prior to the date of inception. How stupid is that? If you want it added, you have to re-upload each image.
 
goboeing
Posts: 2429
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2000 5:31 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:22 am

Brett,

That third shot is great!

I think photos such as the first two you posted, and 90% of the rest of the photos on this website fall into the category of a watermark not really mattering because if someone wants a picture of whatever it is, there are already several hundred (or thousand) out there that they can easily find. It probably doesn't matter.

The rarer pictures are really the only ones that need a watermark.
 
DLKAPA
Posts: 7962
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2003 10:37 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:24 am

I've only watermarked one photo that's on here, and basically when doing so I decided to use the watermark for its purpose: anti-theft. I put the watermark in the most difficult to remove spot possible, and I made it quite visable as well. Unfortunately this often means partially covering the aircraft, but such is life when you don't want your photos lifted.
And all at once the crowd begins to sing: Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same
 
administrator
Posts: 2702
Joined: Mon May 17, 1999 5:11 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 12:36 pm

Please read a longer reply by me on this issue here: Airliners.net Logo Is Killing A.Net (by ACdreamliner Jan 18 2006 in Site Related)

Regards,
Johan
Working on the site from morning 'till night that's livin' alright (1997-2007)
 
Blackhawk144
Posts: 769
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2004 6:20 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 12:59 pm

Well, after reading you're explaination, you do bring up good points, but I still think it wouldn't hurt to make FC members see watermarks. I mean, there really are determined theives who can only find a photo of a certain plane on here, and all they gotta do is just pay a measly $5.

Now what one person said in that thread intrigued me, because it did bring up a good point, and I would like to talk to you about this...

Johan,

Isn't this scenerio your in a little convienent? I mean heres how I figure.

People see watermark, and dislike it: they pay $5
Premium members see watermark, and dislike it: they pay $5+ PLUS the additional $25 they spent
Theives buy a membership to get rid of the watermark: $5+

I don't think you want to make it so everyone sees it because that would result in you losing $10+ extra bucks...I mean theives pay, and photographers have their work stolen, and who gets the ultimate profit? The answer is you...but I don't mean any offense, I just want to point out that this seems a bit too convienent.

Although it would result in a loss of money, you will earn more respect from people if you make it visible to everyone. That would ensure that people would feel secure in your photos.

But I really hope you're not the "money's everything, who cares about the people" person.

Anthony
Time is the best of all teachers. Unfortunately, it kills all of its students!
 
vasanthd
Posts: 446
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 8:35 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:08 pm

Lets not talk about $$. Money goes for supporting A.net and not just to Johan!

Why not have a proper poll just for the FC members to find out if a FC member really wants to see without the watermark. A FC member may just be interested in the Fit Screen or the Aviation news and maybe least bothered about the Watermark option.

I have one more suggestion...
Why not have the intensity of the watermark less (about two steps down) for a FC member??

--Vas

[Edited 2006-01-20 05:11:54]
One Lucky shot deserves another!
 
Blackhawk144
Posts: 769
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2004 6:20 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:14 pm

Quoting VasanthD (Reply 8):
Why not have a proper poll just for the FC members to find out if a FC member really wants to see without the watermark. A FC member may just be interested in the Fit Screen or the Aviation news and maybe least bothered about the Watermark option.

NO! That would never work because there are more FC members who don't give a rats behind about photography, and don't want to see per the ones who think its fair...

Anthony
Time is the best of all teachers. Unfortunately, it kills all of its students!
 
vasanthd
Posts: 446
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 8:35 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:23 pm

Quoting Blackhawk144 (Reply 9):
there are more FC members

Many could be like you...right?

I would like to add one more thing...

Before Watermark feature:
FC Members could...
1) Fit Screen Photos
2) Aviation News
3) No Ads
4) Post messages on forums

Premium Members could...
1) View photos
2) Post messages on forums

Regular Members could...
1) View photos
2) Read messages on forums

After Watermark feature:
FC Members could...
1) Fit Screen Photos
2) Aviation News
3) No Ads
4) Post messages on forums
5) No Watermark

Premium Members could...
1) View photos
2) Post messages on forums
3) With Watermark

Regular Members could...
1) View photos
2) Read messages on forums
3) With Watermark

Shouldnt an extra feature (Watermark) be shared equally among all members?...just like Photo acceptance ratio rule applied to all members?

--Vas

[Edited 2006-01-20 05:34:45]
One Lucky shot deserves another!
 
Blackhawk144
Posts: 769
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2004 6:20 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Fri Jan 20, 2006 1:41 pm

Quoting VasanthD (Reply 10):
Shouldnt an extra feature (Watermark) be shared equally among all members?...just like Photo acceptance ratio rule applied to all members?

That's exactly what I'm trying to say...

Anthony
Time is the best of all teachers. Unfortunately, it kills all of its students!
 
brettdespain
Posts: 126
Joined: Wed May 18, 2005 5:40 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sat Jan 21, 2006 4:38 am

All of your responses are good and go along way to illustrate the problems associated with try to display photographs on the net.

Does it bother me that F/C members get to see the image without the watermark? Yes and no.

Yes, because it takes away a layer of protection from the photographer.

No, because someone who is willing to pay a monthly fee to look at aircraft photos is usually crazy about airplanes, just like me, and spends all of his/her free time at the airport and doesn't have time to make money off of someone else's images!  Smile Also, I recognize the cost of keeping a site like this one going. Without this site, we all be forced into producing and maintaining our own web site. (BTW, my web site should be up this summer).

Another thing that no one yet has addressed is the amount of time it takes to get images on this site. The China air contrail shot that I posted above took 6 attempts to get past the screeners. When it finally did, it came with warning about "low quality".

Honest to Pete, I'd like to strangle the person that came up with that "quality" reason for rejection. Screeners, just say what you mean. If it's grainy, say so etc. "Quality" can mean so many things and yet nothing. You're left at square one again, how do you fix it? And when is someone going to recognize that shooting images through 1 to 2 inches of Plexiglas is very difficult? If you've ever spent much time in the cockpit you'll know what I'm taking about when I say that some windows are so "runny" that is almost impossible to get a good distortion free shot. I see that we have a new posting category "cockpit". Hopefully, when the screeners see this category, they'll remember about plexiglass distortion.

My point here is that after spending so much time trying to get an image on a.net, how ready would you be to send it out into cyber-space knowing that it could be lifted for a magazine? For now watermarks are my only answer. If you want to see an image without the watermark:
1. email me and I'll send you one for a screensaver
2. buy a print.
3. become a first class member.

By doing either one of the 3 above, you are supporting the photographer and this site, and after all, that is the point of having this site.

Someone said in another thread with the same subject, "If you don't want it used, don't post it." The point is, we do want it used, but not to line the pockets of someone else who took no effort what-so-ever other than to log on to the net. Private use is always free, commercial use demands a fee.

Brett
V1...Rotate.
 
SoBe
Posts: 184
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 12:11 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sat Jan 21, 2006 6:42 am

Something interesting I noticed and forgive me if it has been mentioned but selecting Fit Screen, the image will show a watermark even for First Class Members
 
vasanthd
Posts: 446
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 8:35 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sat Jan 21, 2006 6:52 am

Quoting SoBe (Reply 13):
the image will show a watermark even for First Class Members

Ahhh...a bug in the system  Smile
By the way, how does fit to screen work? Anybody has a screen shot?

--Vas
One Lucky shot deserves another!
 
SoBe
Posts: 184
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 12:11 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sat Jan 21, 2006 7:43 am

Fit Screen just enlarges the photo to fit your screen size though it still has a header at the top and your toolbar is still visible. Usually it creates an image that is of much lower quality than the Large image.
 
vasanthd
Posts: 446
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 8:35 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sat Jan 21, 2006 1:12 pm

Quoting SoBe (Reply 15):
fit your screen size

Some thing like a digital zoom??
--Vas
One Lucky shot deserves another!
 
SoBe
Posts: 184
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2004 12:11 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:57 am

Quoting Vasanthd (Reply 16):
Some thing like a digital zoom??

You are correct.
 
ake0404ar
Posts: 2379
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 10:55 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sun Jan 22, 2006 7:29 pm

to watermark!!!!!

I guess I have been one of the guys who requested this watermark option to be implemented and I am very thankful that a.net did listen to a bunch of photographers.

Ever since this watermark option is available, all my shots are equipped with a watermark.

I understand and I have received some comments from visitors that they don't like that feature, but after explaining why this was implemented, most of them get the point where we are coming from.

As Brett outlined, if they want a copy for personal use, they can e-mail me and I am happy to provide a non watermark image.

Vasco G.
 
aviopic
Posts: 2423
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 7:52 pm

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sun Jan 22, 2006 9:27 pm

In general I have always been against the use of a watermark and so far I still refuse to use it.
- Many people worry about things they don't have to worry about.
When I see a huge watermark across a standard photo of a common aircraft taken at a common airport which accumulated 137 views in half a year I am thinking "man...... you should be glad if someone steals it"  Smile
- In my own experience the problem is very limited and thanks to our strong community I have always been notified by means of this forum and/or an email from somebody.
- This website is driven by 100.000 visitors a day who are just looking for something nice on there desktop as long as it does not hold a watermark.
If everybody puts a watermark on every photo their interest will fade very quickly and with it the interest of sponsors, advertisers, photographers and first class members as well.
This would mean the end of A.net as we know it today and solve the watermark issue ones and for all but is that what we want ?

Willem
The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
 
User avatar
eksath
Crew
Posts: 1301
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2004 6:19 am

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sun Jan 22, 2006 11:35 pm

Like Johan said, post watermark implemenatation I uploaded stuff here that I would never have otherwise knowing that there was atleast-in the very least- a mechanism beyond a superfluous banner at the bottom. I realize the first class member can rip it off...but for NOW I guess this is as good as it gets.

I truly hope that Johan and his crew will remain on top of technology and implement new features as they evolve. I have no reason to believe Johan would not protect the photographer or turn a blind eye to copyright abuse despite numerous instances that are brought to our attention. I have seen periodical upgrades to this website hence I am putting my faith in him to safeguard the photographers work.
World Wide Aerospace Photography
 
TS
Posts: 717
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2003 9:19 pm

RE: To Watermark Or Not To Watermark....

Sun Jan 22, 2006 11:46 pm

Well said, Willem. Exactly my thoughts.

Due to the watermarks my a.net visits aren't as much fun as they used to be. I see a beautiful air-to-air image, open it--only to discover there's a big fat watermark on the photo. Not only get photos blemished by this, but users also get fooled because they don't see the watermarks on the thumbnails.

Thomas
Even a broken clock is right twice a day.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests