Sharing EXIF Data

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by paul_garland, Jun 12, 2009.

  1. Whether it is on this Nikon forum or others such as Flickr, I find that some people share their EXIF data, but for some reason many people choose not to.
    On a site where everyone is trying to learn how to take better pictures, posting one’s EXIF data is just common courtesy. Whether one’s interest lies is in using a different lens, camera body, or software, or perhaps just looking at the myriad of settings possible in today’s DSLRs, studying other photographers EXIF data is helpful. It is polite to share your EXIF data with your colleagues.
  2. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I, for one, prefer not to share the serial number for my cameras with everybody. For example, what if someone plays a plank and adds my serial number to some "stolen camera" list? It is simply not worth the unnecessary potential trouble for me. That is why I routinely remove all EXIF data.
    When necessary, I also post the aperture, shutter speed, focal length, ISO and camera type along with my images.
  3. I have several friends who feel the need to always put their copyright information directly on their pictures. I'm not trying to start WWIII, but I find that this reduces greatly the beauty that might otherwise be seen in the photo. Copyright information is another good use of EXIF data.
  4. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Paul, exposure information does not have to be placed inside the image area to obscure part of the image. Take a look at our Wednesday threads. Those who choose to provide exposure info expliciately, they put that in words as part of the caption for the image outside of the image area.
  5. I'm with Shun, here. I deliberately strip EXIF data from any photos I publish because there's just too much information stored there that people have no business knowing (the serial number, for one thing, as Shun mentioned).
    If you want to know the exposure details of a particular photo of mine, you're more than welcome to ask for it and I'll be happy to share it with you. As an added bonus, I'll be able to tell you details that EXIF data can't, like whether I used a tripod, where the lighting was, how I metered for the photo, and so on and so forth.
    Paul, I have to disagree. I have no problem seeing a tidy copyright notice or watermark on a photo any more than I do seeing an artist's signature on a painting. Putting your copyright in the EXIF is just about useless. Most people don't know how to see the EXIF data, let alone even know what it is.
  6. how do you strip the Exif data off?
  7. "how do you strip the Exif data off?"
    I use Photoshop for post processing almost all the time. When I resize for posting and then store the file I use the dedicated file store menue item "safe for web and devices". There exif data are removed and jpg compression can be selected and viewed before storage. In recent versions one can activate a click box to convert the file to sRGB. All very comfortable :)
    I presume other software has similar features.
    And I also prefer to selectively leave exif data only in rare cases. Typically I remove the data and post what is useful for the occasion.
    "On a site where everyone is trying to learn how to take better pictures, posting one’s EXIF data is just common courtesy."
    Paul do I have to feel guilty now?
  8. Lots of people probably don't even realise their EXIF is being stripped when they use 'save for web', etc.
  9. And here I've always ensured I keep mine to share with people. Ah well..... I simply did not ever think about the serial numbers.........
    See - set out to learn something every day...... Guess I've learned something for today. Does that mean I can go back to bed & go back to sleep?
    But seriously - - I guess the serial # of the camera is a bad thing to hand out like that. Still I would consider it fairly easy to prove their mine.... I have too many RAW files to use as proof.
    Lil :)
  10. Even if someone got your camera serial number, hopefully you still have the original purchase receipt. It is impossible for anyone to prove that something you own was stolen. I have no problem leaving EXIF data in my images, it is hardly a threat to me. It's not like some cop is going to stop me on the street and ask to see the serial number on my camera. My car license plate is fully visible at all times. Someone could put my car on a stolen list. So what?? I get pulled over, show them the registration in my name, and it's done. I know what I own, period. I don't live in fear of stupid people.
  11. My EXIF data shows up when I use the option to upload several images. But there is no camera serial number showing in it. I use Capture NX 2 to process NEF files, and then LR.
  12. Well, I wasn't planning to divulge my deep, dark secrets, but since you insist...
    Nikon FM2N, 50/2 AI Nikkor. Exposure not recorded. Tri-X, EI 1200, developed in Diafine. Printed on Ilford Multigrade fiber paper, using true split-grade printing - selective areas carefully burned with magenta or yellow filtration as appropriate. Durst M605 dichroic head enlarger. Processed in Ilford Multigrade developer, Alta indicator stop bath, Ilford Hypam rapid fixer. Finished in Paterson Acutone selenium toner, which imparts a delicate warm glow compared with KRST (which doesn't show in this scan).
    Umm, lessee, what else... oh, yes, Umax flatbed scanner, Jasc Paint Shop Pro, Compaq PC (specs available upon request).
    But I'm not sure how this will help you. Just visit downtown Fort Worth, park in the free parking garage near the Bass Hall, walk about 100 yards and you can take the same photo with any camera.
  13. BTW, this thread is one of many that illustrates why many photographers prefer to prominently display copyright notices on their photos. If you could see how many sites not only reproduce copyrighted photos without permission but also alter them in ways that some may find distasteful or even obscene, you might be persuaded of the merits of prominent copyright notices.
  14. "...posting one’s EXIF data is just common courtesy"
    Paul, it isn't. The notion that one can learn from seeing someone elses EXIF data is a wrong one. Just like Epp I'm happy to provide answers when asked although I myself couldn't care less about other people's gear. Also it's kind of funny that people want EXIF data all the time but hardly ever ask if film is used, if any, or how the photo is worked on.
    Consider this. Not what is used is important but how it is used. Now THAT would be far more helpfull info.
  15. Although including the EXIF data is not common courtesy, I believe you can learn something from the EXIF data, atleast when you are just starting to learn about photography. For example how one can certain effects to the picture (photographing water in various ways comes to my mind), and how a certain lens/other gear functions in certain settings/real life situations. But I'm also for protecting your personal/gear specific information like S/N. Even though the real danger for something bad happening is small, the risk is there. However, not all cameras include the S/N info to the EXIF data, or atleast I could not find it from my pics taken with D50 and Fuji S5. But pics from D80 on the had it in EXIF data, so I would assume that newer Nikon (post D80/D200) cameras have the S/N in the EXIF data, right?
    By the way, is there a tool/plug-in available with what you could select on what EXIF data would be included in the saved file in PS/other PP-software? Of course you strip the image from EXIF data and fill in the info you want pass on, but some automation for this would be great. (I'm not a PP-expert as you can see :) )
    I'm also for adding your copyright information into the picture itself. As a producer by profession it is my second nature to protect my Intellectual Property in every way possible (within reasonable limits of course, with web publication you always take certain risks no matter what you do). From my point of view, protecting your IP is of utmost importance, even if you are not a professional photographer, and I think the thread Lex linked demonstrates one side of exactly why it is important (Thanks for the link Lex, the thread was hilarious in it's own way). I also teach kids and young people on media and copyright issues are one of the most important things I talk about, how to protect your rights and not to abuse the rights of the others. The world is full of people having all kinds of ideas about copyrights and displaying the copyright in the pic itself atleast some (very limited) protection for the pic against wrongful use. I believe this not only protects your own photos, but works in benefit of the photographic art and profession in whole and in some level makes people more aware of the copyrights in whole (or atleast I hope it does). I may be a bit naive with this line of thought but I still need to have some faith in humanity. :)
  16. Unfortunately embedding copyright protection information into the meta data isn't a reliable method. Many pirated photos now are swiped by making screen captures. Even when a site is clever enough to try to interfere with the screencap capability built into a Windows PC there are freebie utilities and Firefox add-ons that work better anyway. I use these routinely for illustrative purposes, and I've seen the same screencap utilities used on many other websites to copy and redistribute images. The meta data doesn't travel with screencaps (which are often saved in PNG format, but may be converted to JPEG, GIF, BMP, etc.).
    That's why copyrighted stock art and previews for many commercial photographers are prominently labeled with several semi-transparent copyright notices. Sure, it can interfere with the aesthetic appreciation for people who are not clients, but it's a necessity for anyone who is serious about protecting his/her intellectual and commercial property. I'm considering doing this myself on at least a few of my photos on public display, mostly because I'm hoping to secure some sort of business arrangement for them.

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