Can you believe this?

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by rich815, Jan 29, 2010.

  1. I just got this email from a software developer for the iPhone:
    You've been sent a Flickr Mail from Yurilulu:
    :: Can we use your photos for our app site on Apple iTune
    I am Yuri from 'Art and Mobile' a company that programed
    application like Toy Camera, Tilt Shift Generator, Quad
    I found your photo on the flicker's website. I really love
    your photos. Especially this three.
    Along Baseline Road,

    Really beautiful...
    Did you by chance use our iphone applications' Toy Camera'
    to take your photos?
    If you did, may we ask you for permission to use your
    photographs(the highest resolution version you have.) for
    our showcase on our website, our app page on itune store, or
    other promotional material?
    Unfortunately we are unable to pay a fee for usage, however
    we would give full credit. We can also credit your website
    depend on materials.
    Please let me know.
    Best Regards,
    I replied as follows:
    Hi Yuri,

    Thanks for your nice comments on my photos, and yes all were made using your software (which I used money to buy), as mentioned in the comments and tags section of those photos in Flickr.

    As for permission to use my photos, I will allow it but certainly not for free for you to use to sell, promote and showcase your for-profit business. If you would like to discuss reasonable rates for such usage please let me know. Otherwise, no you may not use my photos.

    Richard S.
    Albany, CA (San Francisco bay area)
    He wants ME to provide my photos for FREE for his PROFIT business. The gall.
    Moderator's note: Links removed. Moved from Business forum to Casual Conversations forum. The Business forum is a place to ask questions about the business of photography; it's not a place to gossip about companies that ask for free photos.
  2. For some people, vanity is a form of currency. Never be surprised at what people will ask for.
  3. And supposedly this is software is "The most sold camera app in Japan". So they make huge money, but expect me to work for free.
  4. At least they asked.
    Now you have a paper trail just in case. ;) Save the email.
  5. Unfortunately Not a Surprise.
    Here's an answer that my wife suggested, It's Awesome!
    Good afternoon Mr. "Cheap Jerk"
    I always welcome the opportunity to spread the word about my photog. business.
    I've had great success with the agreement below, it benefits both parties involved.
    I will provide the rights of usage at my standard rate of ...(whatever you would charge)....In return, any referrals resulting from your promotional credit, will be refunded back to you, in addition, any profit over and above your initial cost for usage, I will pay you a (measly) 10% commission.
    Please let me know if you're interested as I will immediately expedite my standard written agreement.
    Mr. "I don't work for free"
    I typically get 2 responses, "No thank You", or the deafening sound of "Cricket-Cricket"
  6. Rich -
    Don't be so quick to judge - While I'm not totally in favor of him asking for free photos / usage - stop and think about the advertising / trade offs that you could get by getting your photos out there.
    Of course he could always just go to istock or one of the microstock sites and buy a photo - unlimited usage for $15 - $20.00 but he seems to like yours.
    Be honored - see if you can come to an agreeement and work something out.
  7. It never hurts to ask. I would reply with a courteous thank you, and here is the fee for use, type email.
  8. Rich:
    I've taken a few business sales seminars, every single time it's been stated, "Never give your work away", at a minimum charge, give them a discount.
    If you want additional market exposure for your work, there are many community publications that charge inexpensive rates.
    Think about it, giving our work away immediately devalues our work. In addition, you do it once and they'll expect it again...and again...and again.
    It de-values ALL our work as a profession.
    Never give your work away.
    Warm Regards,
  9. David, I understand. But I have enough experience back in my early days of giving away photos for free promotion to know that it rarely turns into much. Frankly it devalues what you feel your work is worth to allow a for-profit business, and supposedly one quite successful in selling their product, to use my photos to market such for free. Sure, I'm flattered but that does not pay my bills. Just as someone asking them for a free copy of their software "because it's so awesome and I'll tell all my friends about it". What do you think their answer would be?
    Michael, I think, other than my little jab about using money to pay for their product, that the rest of my reply was along those lines....
    Frank, your wife has a great suggestion!
  10. Ha! Frank, I was writing my last post exactly when you were. Agreed.
  11. Frank:

    What does "being a jerk back" accomplish? Treat everyone professionally I say. You never know where it will lead. Maybe they realize they really want this photo and tomorrow they come up with a $20k budget. How likely is it that they'll get back to Rich if he gets back to them acting like a juvenile ja***ss?
  12. Mikael, I don't think you understood.
    I would/have never used the "smart-mouthed" comments (below) in my e-mails...
    "Good afternoon Mr. "Cheap Jerk" "Mr. "I don't work for free"
    I was just having fun in my response to Rich815.
    The e-mails I've sent are certainly respectful.
    When I began this career I did donate my images for similar requests. In ONE HUNDRED percent of the time I gained very little or NOTHING from it. In addition, don't you think there's an inherent level of disrespect for a profitable company to ask a small business owner to donate HIS services/images?
    I have/had no expectation that they would get in touch with me, why would I want to get involved with someone who doesn't think my work is worth paying for, or is just too cheap to pay for my images.
    I have however donated to some of the local public schools in the area, because I believe that there's a (local) community benefit. I am happy to do so.
    Perhaps you (and others) have benefited greatly from requests like the one asked of Rich, I have never.
    Warm Regards,
  13. Frank,
    I agree with you 100% about donations of images/time never amounting to much of anything. In my 20+ years working full time as a photographer/writer I can count on one hand the number of times I've donated image usage and it actually leading to anything. Then again, on the very rare occasions that I do donate image usage I don't expect anything in return so that works for me.

    I kinda guessed you were just having a bit of fun. This is the Internet though and what is clearly tounge-in-cheek to you someone else will read as dead serious. Not that there's really anything wrong with that - if anything it'll cut down on the competition for all those reading this forum and just starting up their business(es).
  14. I let a business use one of my images once for a webpage graphic. I was intrigued, as I had shot the photo recreationally, and this was a local business. The photo highlighted a local feature that I was proud to show. All I asked in return was to please send me a link to the finished product (wedpage) so I could see the use and appreciate it. I never heard another word back. I only expected a courtesy as payment, and didn't even get that. Never again.
  15. I think this is pretty funny, this thread has most likely given them as much free advertising as the photos would have been worth to them.
  16. >>>>I think this is pretty funny, this thread has most likely given them as much free advertising as the photos would have been worth to them.
    Probably at least balanced out by exposing them for the people they are and the ones who will now not buy from them for that very reason.
  17. Never give work away for free. It just sets a precedent for more people to expect free.
  18. he doesn't want your photos, he wants your clicks and links. Do you really think someone who operates a spam scheme would ask to use your photos?
    I had a very similar email a few weeks back, touting products I had never used. Straight to the junk bin.
  19. Adam, I do use his software, and he can see that on those photos posted on Flickr.
  20. Whilst I turn down numerous requests for free use of my work, I occasionally give some for 'free' use to particular users/businesses - often charitable usage, but sometimes for commercial usage. I consider their intended usage carefully before committing. What I always do though is provide a proper invoice & contract detailing what they may and may not do with the work and the penalties they will incur if they breach these terms. The invoice shows the full commercial value of the work and the 100% discount.
    You may agree or disagree with this method of 'working' but it works well for me. It lets the user see I do not work for nothing, and what the proper value of my services is. If I demonstrate that I value my work chances are they will too. As a consequence I have had my work used in some places I would never have gained access to and the advertizing has led to further work that pays properly, and on occasions has paid exceptionally well, and way above the going rate.
    I have of course had work misused as a result of the 'free' use - usually by someone in the company unaware of the restrictions and who has not bothered either to check metadata nor speak to a superior. In such cases my original invoice & contract and T&C's have enabled me to extract financial compensation for the misuse to the full market value of the usage, and sometimes also with a penalty.
    My advice would be to politely speak to the business who is interested in your work and discuss the use, find out what they do and how they do it, and consider where they might be heading, then go on the web and do your homework on them - and if they are an up and coming business that might go places ask to be paid in shares. In 5 years time those Google shares you obtained for letting a fledgling search engine company use your work for 'free' might be worth a little bit more than a repro fee.
    We are worklng as photographers in a rapidly changing market with the rules changing all the time. You can either embrace this change and try to take advantage of it or remain where you are. You business may or may not suffer, but unless you engage with the market you will never find out.
  21. Frank, that's brilliant! :) You have very good taste in women.

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