NBC/SyFy steals images, issues threats when contacted by rights holder.

Bob Hubbard

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[h=1]SyFy Uses Copyrighted Images in Their “Heroes of Cosplay” Show, Neglects to Get Permission From Photographers[/h]http://www.thephoblographer.com/2013/08/26/syfy-uses-copyrighted-images-in-their-heroes-of-cosplay-show-neglects-to-get-permission-from-photographers/

According to this report by BGZ Studios, SyFy was using copyrighted images in their “Heroes of Cosplay” show–albeit without the photographers’ consent. And apparently, it weren’t just a few pictures, but the copyright infringement was massive. One of the photographers whose images were used without permission (let alone proper compensation) is Brian Humphrey, who happens to be an affiliate of BGZ Studios. So BGZ’s Darrell Ardita took the matter up, and sent SyFy an invoice for the eight images used in the show to which Brian holds the copyright, asking a total compensation sum of almost $ 30k, together with a detailed letter explaining the legal grounds. However, instead of complying with the request, SyFy tried to talk their way out of the affair, stating that they had an agreement with the Cosplayers shown in the images, who happen to be the legal co-authors of the photographs. When Darrell pointed out to them that this was not the case, the people in charge at SyFy/NBC tried to put an end to the affair by threatening to compromise the careers of the cosplayers featured in the show.

Classy. If someone did that with their work, they'd drop a platoon of sharks on the person. You would imagine a major media company would understand copyright.
 

granfire

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oh, come on...you know it's their right...screw the rest - especially the little guy....

On the other hand, how can you ruin a cos-players carrier?!
 

jks9199

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Some of the cosplayers are trying to get their foot in the door for TV and movie costuming or similar endeavors. Others make a fair sum selling costume parts and elements to folks... or are models. So they do have a career to sweat... Oh... and some of them may have an ordinary career that may not look kindly on them being embroiled in litigation for a "hobby."

It's simple laziness on the part of NBC/Syfy that they failed to ensure that they got the right copyright releases in the first place. While I'm sure a lot of the pictures came from the model/cosplayer's portfolio, the network should have known and ensured that the releases were obtained. Especially since the blog that describes the situation in detail from BZG says that the models included the photographer's info...
 
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Bob Hubbard

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jks9199

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And... apparently, part of that included a "shut up! we're screwed, we know it... and there are others out there who have a claim, too, and we'd rather they not notice or know that we caved..." clause...
 

granfire

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hehehe, good for the photographer!

I wonder if the legal eagles figured out that they would lose big time and look terrible doing so once the black mail came up in trial....
 
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Bob Hubbard

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If it went to trial, SyFy was looking at $250,000 per violation.
 

Takai

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If it went to trial, SyFy was looking at $250,000 per violation.

Now that would have been interesting to watch. Expensive too. SyFy on the fines, and the photographers dealing with the long appeals process that would almost have certainly ensued.
 
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Bob Hubbard

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I think it'd be short.

Judge: SyFy, did you remove the copyright notice from the photos?
SyFy: Yes your honor, but the model said it was ok.
Judge: You know better, get your check book.

:D
 

granfire

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Now that would have been interesting to watch. Expensive too. SyFy on the fines, and the photographers dealing with the long appeals process that would almost have certainly ensued.

Since the company was doing the suiting....the photographers would have probably done business as usual...maybe made a will that the Grandkids could reap the benefits from the windfall...
 

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