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Is it Time for a Watermark?

  1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
    Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years ago

    Hi to all you hubbers,

    I am just wondering: am I abandoned and alone in my singular thoughts or perhaps there are others like me! Surely in the year of moving forward and acquiring (hi squidoo's) it is time to preserve our copyright, perhaps it is time for a watermark.
    I expect many of you feel the same, is it time to make our mark? I think so... I don't want to freign being the best: I realise a watermark takes from the overall appearance, however 'I cry with sheer frustration' I am sick of finding my work without my permission on other sites, compliments of HubPages (sorry guys, cause I love being here). There's some very clever people here: ideas please. Oh! and there are plenty of hubbers getting their material and pics nicked: we have good writers and photographers here: lets keep our work here @ HubPages and stop plagiarism smile

    example pic with watermark below
    http://s2.hubimg.com/u/11865905.jpg


    http://s1.hubimg.com/u/11865938.jpg

    1. lisavollrath profile image94
      lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      This is why watermarks do nothing to preserve copyright:

      http://s1.hubimg.com/u/11866012.jpg

      That took me all of five minutes. Anyone with any sort of graphic skills at all can wipe out a watermark, and replace it with their own.

      As for the second image, why even bother using a photo at all if you're going to obliterate it? I'm not sure I could ever take an article with that kind of image on it seriously.

      1. lisavollrath profile image94
        lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        Here's the under 30 seconds version of watermark removal. I even threw in some photo adjustments before my 30 seconds were up:

        http://s1.hubimg.com/u/11866036.jpg

      2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
        Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        I've just used very simple (bog standard) easy 2 second stuff, don't be too pleased with yourself it was just an example smile
        And as for the photo's same thing, just examples: Jezz...

        1. lisavollrath profile image94
          lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

          The quality of your example photo seems consistent with the food photos in your recipe hubs. That doesn't change the fact that watermarks can easily be removed. Trying to use them as a method to preserve copyright is futile.

          1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
            Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

            I've wised up, I sell the best as stock photos and the rest can go on the web albeit they still get nicked.

    2. Marisa Wright profile image95
      Marisa Wrightposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      For the first several years' of HubPages' existence, watermarks and copyright notices of ANY kinds were not allowed.  The reasoning was simple - HubPages didn't have the resources to check every photo, so they wanted to make it easy to spot photos stolen from stock photo sites - which always have a watermark or a copyright notice. 

      In the last year or so, they have relaxed that rule dramatically, without ever saying so.  Copyright notices, like the one in your first photo, are now fine.  It has never been officially announced, although an announcement was promised.

      1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
        Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        I will look into this. Thank you.

  2. LindaSmith1 profile image60
    LindaSmith1posted 3 years ago

    May be, but we cannot use watermarked images.

  3. relache profile image85
    relacheposted 3 years ago

    Gabriel, in the five years you have been here, have you ever read this rule?

    http://hubpages.com/faq/#pixelated-watermarks

    What do you think HubPages reason was for making this decision? 

    If the policy were to change, how would you be able to tell a legal/valid watermark from an illegal one?

    1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, but in five years should we not progress? And thank you for your comment.

  4. lisavollrath profile image94
    lisavollrathposted 3 years ago

    I'm an artist. I also shoot my own photos for the majority of my articles. I absolutely loathe watermarks. They ruin the look of the image.

    1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      It's true, I'm just very tried of finding my work without my permission. I'm very disilusioned right now.

  5. Millionaire Tips profile image88
    Millionaire Tipsposted 3 years ago

    Paul E. wrote a message on a forum that there was a change in the watermark policy and that details would be coming soon, but they never did come.  I too would like to be able to add watermarks.  If we use our user name on Hubpages, certainly that would be easy enough to check.

    1. relache profile image85
      relacheposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Easy enough to check what? 

      If I have a photo on one of my Hubs that has a watermark of my HubPages user name on it, and you get a takedown notice from someone else saying that picture is theirs and just has my watermark on it, how do you decide who the legit owner of the photograph is? 

      Suppose I file a counter-complaint saying it is not their picture and I have the original?

      How much time and energy would you be able to put towards figuring out who the actual photo owner and copyright holder is?

      1. Millionaire Tips profile image88
        Millionaire Tipsposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        Wouldn't you have the same problem if the photo wasn't watermarked at all?

      2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
        Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        It depends how serious you are about your stuff: I'm serious, and I will go the lenght and breath to prove my work is mine: been there and it's totally worth it. Most stuff is easily proved by your IP address or your patent materials, and once at that stage if the work is yours, the thief will give up because they'll be easily caught. I'm just trying to deter, why can't I do that? Thank you for your comment.

    2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      You are very right. I wonder what happened with that?

  6. Arachnea profile image83
    Arachneaposted 3 years ago

    When I first migrated over, I came across the rule (http://hubpages.com/faq/#pixelated-watermarks) in the learning center. However, I noticed the language "... that contain prominent watermarks." Prominent', qualifies the the use of watermarks. Íf that one word were removed from the statement, I'd understand it to mean no watermarks, absolutely none, never ever ever. But it doesn't.

    The part of the rule that reads, "Images that are low resolution, grainy, or pixelated detract from the aesthetic appeal of a Hub and are prohibited." provides the reason for not using poor quality images.      The next sentence begins, "For the same reason ..." and continues, " images or videos that contain prominent watermarks are also prohibited."

    So the reason images bearing PROMINENT watermarks are prohibited is that they detract from the hub.

  7. Glimmer Twin Fan profile image98
    Glimmer Twin Fanposted 3 years ago

    I brought this up in a forum post a little while ago and hubpages did respond.  Here's the post  http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/122327 

    It was brought up in a later post as well and as mentioned before in this current thread, Paul Edmondson did say that HP is working on a policy about this issue.

    1. Arachnea profile image83
      Arachneaposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      What I've always considered a watermark is the inconspicuous type which is usually tucked in a corner like in the image below (it could stand to be a bit less obvious). It derives from use in quality stationery. However, some of the image sites sprawl the 'watermark' image so it's apparent that it was the sample copy and not the unmarked copy.

      http://s1.hubimg.com/u/11866648.png

      Watermark by definition: a faint design made in some paper during manufacture, which is visible when held against the light and typically identifies the maker.

      Faint is the operating word there. What I'm seeing in the previous images is something that can't be called faint, obscure or not prominent.

    2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I'll check it out, thank you.

  8. Arachnea profile image83
    Arachneaposted 3 years ago

    None of my images are intended to be taken for fine art. So, if anyone ever has a desire to lift any of my images, there won't be any heart burn over it. Unless of course the sensitivity of the duplicate content program extends to images at some point in the future. I would appreciate an inquiry as to if it's okay, but barring that. I'm not really concerned about it. The lack of concern is because for some of my manipulated images, the base comes from a free site anyway.

  9. Mark Ewbie profile image82
    Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago

    Detract from the quality makes me laugh.

    I will soon be writing a piece (not for HP) on the number of links and spam that any reader to one of my Hubs receives.

    The advert overload and the related content spam to say nothing of the floating ads...

    And watermarking might distract from the quality?

    When ten foot high bits of garbage such as "BUY THIS" do not distract?

    Seems to me that HP want very high quality content (lol) in order to maximise the number of adverts they can stuff in.

    And yes... I am moving on.

    1. lisavollrath profile image94
      lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I use an ad blocker. I don't see any of that. Of course, I also don't see my own Amazon capsules, either...

  10. Sed-me profile image82
    Sed-meposted 3 years ago

    I have a question... is that hot cocoa?

    1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      It's chocolate mousse with a dollop of whipped cream and finely grated chocolate bits smile I serve them in white cups on white saucers when I have dinner quests: an easy receipe but it looks pretty good and tastes pretty good too. I always have empty cups even though I make extra.

      1. Shades-of-truth profile image88
        Shades-of-truthposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        Oh, Gabriel, I just had to laugh! I know you meant dinner guests, not dinner "quests", but it made me think of how my children would run out to the car when I arrived home from work, wondering if I had brought food. They were on their own little "dnner quests"!

        In the midst of the seriousness of this thread, you brought a smile to my face!

        1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
          Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

          Sorry, I answered quickly as I saw you'd asked the question hours previously smile

  11. Mark Ewbie profile image82
    Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago

    Oh and to the OP.  Am I mistaken but do you need official permission from Disney to use that 101 Dalmations picture - or is that not subject to copyright?

    1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I only use pictures that are free from free sites (there are lots of them) and I always put the code of the picture in when I upload it. There are lots of free sites where you can get pictures and I have posts on free sites with free pics it's the ones that are very obviously not free that I have a problem with: like my articles accommpanied by my photos, which are on here, and not free to downlaod and use as ones own. I have had lots of pics used without my permission with the thief claiming credit, and I would like to able to stop that.

      1. Marisa Wright profile image95
        Marisa Wrightposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        When you say "free sites" which do you mean?   There are quite a few free sites, but most of the good ones ask for a photo credit.   

        One kind of free site to be careful of is sites like Photobucket, where members can upload photos.  I found your Dalmatians photo on a site like that, and it's highly unlikely that the person who uploaded it held the copyright.   

        Photobucket, and sites like it, have a section in the small print that says they expect their users to upload only photos they own, but of course hardly anybody reads the small print, and these sites are chockful of stolen photos. 

        You can't put any code in photos on HubPages, unless you mean in the "source' box (which appears under the photo if you've added it).

        1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
          Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

          Yes, exactly in the case of hubpages it's the 'source' box, as in where the photo was sourced: if I haven't paid for it and it's come from a free site then I put the code in the source box, for my own benefit as I know it's there. When I have paid (usually just a few cents) then I don't use the source box for a code as I will already have the account of payment for proof.
          The sites I use are free sites and I read the fine print, none of which you mention though. Also the free ones (I use) never have a watermark so it's easy to see (as any one who is familiar with this type of work will know) they have not been doctored either. I always use stock photos where I am a member like shutterstock (monthly free photos) or other stock photo sites where I use their free templates: for calenders; covers; cards; photos; wallpaper; posters; background; numerous gifts etc... and in fairness I'm not saying the free ones are good or anything, mostly the quality is not great, only saying that if I use photos I have either got them from a free site that  I know or I've paid a few cents for better quality. I only use sites I am very familiar with.
          My problem is finding my work being used by another person claiming it's their work. That's my problem and that's what I want to fix...

          1. lisavollrath profile image94
            lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

            You have images in your hubs that are from Disney and Hanna-Barbera. Those are licensed images, and there's no way you can obtain the permission to use them without paying quite a hefty fee. Even if you've found them on "free" sites, you shouldn't be using them.

            I also wonder if McDonald's would appreciate your using their logo and images from their site in an article about why their food makes you fat.

            I think the way you're using licensed and trademarked imagery is setting you up for some cease and desist orders from some very nasty corporations.

            1. Mark Ewbie profile image82
              Mark Ewbieposted 3 years agoin reply to this

              It's all quite ironic really.

              1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
                Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                Not at all, I'm not claiming the photos as my own.

                1. lisavollrath profile image94
                  lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                  It doesn't matter whether you're claiming them as your own. You're using licensed and trademarked images in your articles without permission.

                  You can't just grab Disney artwork, and use it to illustrate your articles. It doesn't matter where you got it, or who is claiming that they're "free" images. Those images are copyrighted---and, even worse, they're licensed characters.

                  What you're doing is the same as someone coming to one of your articles, and grabbing one of your photos, and using it. You're doing the very thing you're complaining about, and you're doing it to a company that takes its licenses very seriously.

                  1. Krysanthe profile image93
                    Krysantheposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                    +1

                  2. Mark Ewbie profile image82
                    Mark Ewbieposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                    +1.  But what is interesting to me is that no one from HubPages picks this up.

                    On Bubblews the account would be gone.  They take it seriously.

                  3. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
                    Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                    Last time: my sources are all good: paid for or otherwise.

            2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
              Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

              Thank you for your concern: but, my sources are all good.
              Regarding the McDonald's article I think you should read before you comment. It is actually a well sourced article that points the finger at so called healthier foods being less healthy than McDonald's which is a positive article in favor of McDonald's not against it and therefore positive feedback and good advertising. It's what writers called research and everything as been sourced properly.

              1. Marisa Wright profile image95
                Marisa Wrightposted 3 years agoin reply to this

                So, can you set our minds at rest about the Disney and Hanna-Barbera images by explaining the source?  There is no source on the Hub.

                Other commenters are right about McDonalds - they don't like their logo used regardless of the tone of the article.   I thought the same as you at one point, until I wrote a (positive) review about a certain product, and got a very stern letter from the manufacturer threatening me with legal action if I didn't remove the image of their logo.

  12. psycheskinner profile image81
    psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago

    We are allowed some text and watetmarks according to some rules they never actually shared with us (since this exception was revealed about 4 months ago).

  13. LindaSmith1 profile image60
    LindaSmith1posted 3 years ago

    Disney copyrights everything. Yep, I have seen the Disney images used as well.  Oh, well, it won't be me that is taking the chance to be sued by Disney.

    I just checked a couple of my hubs.  One is a dog hub and  not one of the related searches have anything to do with dogs.  Let's see, Lose Weight, Valentines, Birthday cards.  Most are about weight loss. 

    Yet our products, links to wherever have to be related to our hubs???

  14. Shorebirdie profile image85
    Shorebirdieposted 3 years ago

    That is one thing I hope will change, too.  I consider my watermarks in a way similar to signing my artwork.  I don't think the "we can't determine what is stolen and what is not" a good excuse for not allowing it. 

    I don't think it deters the determined thief, but I do feel it helps protect the casual thief who thinks that everything posted on the web is OK to steal.  I've seen at least one or two posts here on Hubpages, already, about someone saying it wasn't the owner's photo because it didn't have any notice or signature on it.  Even though the thief was wrong, it was still a hassle.

    I sign most of my photos that I put on the internet except for those I sell prints through on art sites or those I put up on Creative Commons.  On the art sites, they often has ways to deter casual copyright theft or you can watermark them with their logo, so I don't worry about it.

  15. melbel profile image93
    melbelposted 3 years ago

    There are lots of people who would like watermarks, but as a reader, it really detracts from the experience. I don't know, I just don't think there's a way to put a watermark on an image without it looking tacky.

  16. LindaSmith1 profile image60
    LindaSmith1posted 3 years ago

    McDonalds photos are under their Trademark and not to be used, unless you have contacted them and asked for their permission to do so.  Otherwise, those who use copyrighted and trademark images are open to a lawsuit, and possibly could be putting Hub Pages in jeopardy as well.

  17. LindaSmith1 profile image60
    LindaSmith1posted 3 years ago

    Funny thing is that someone who uses copyrighted materials and trademarks,  actually puts Copyright on their profile and hubs.

  18. Kylyssa profile image94
    Kylyssaposted 3 years ago

    Disney is known for suing the pants off of people who have used their images or who have even drawn or painted or otherwise created images of Disney characters.

  19. watergeek profile image90
    watergeekposted 3 years ago

    How do you find out if your own photos are being used elsewhere? I don't watermark mine, but do label them as copyrighted. However, I've never thought to check to see if they're being stolen.

    1. lisavollrath profile image94
      lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Watergeek, I have a hub on how to use Google search to find copies of your images. Check "Find Out Who Created That Image!".

    2. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      I regularly browse the net and use key words when researching stuff. I came across photos and thought the looked familiar, and then realised they were mine: very obviously mine. I have also had other people tell even here too. Some don't bother me to be honest, but others do... landscape ones and ones I've worked hard to achieve.

  20. Valerie P Davis profile image82
    Valerie P Davisposted 3 years ago

    I'll point out helpfully for the folks considering copyright questions:

    Do a Creative Commons search for photos of a restaurant or its food, or photos of somebody's DVD or branded merchandise. People post stuff like that all the time, and those photos belong to them.

    http://search.creativecommons.org/

    1. lisavollrath profile image94
      lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Photographs that include trademarked logos or licensed characters can still be a problem, if the holder of the rights to those original logos or characters objects to the way they're used.

      1. Valerie P Davis profile image82
        Valerie P Davisposted 3 years agoin reply to this

        Anything can be a problem if someone with deep pockets decides to make it so. McDonald's has sued someone named McDonald for opening a hamburger stand with his own name.

        However McDonald's, Disney, et. al. have not sued Flickr and other CC hosts to take down photos of their trademarked items. Indeed, those hosts would have to close if that started, as so much in life has trademarks on it.

        Caution is good, but paranoia is not necessary.

        1. lisavollrath profile image94
          lisavollrathposted 3 years agoin reply to this

          I put myself through college working for Disney. Paranoia is totally justified. When they smack someone, they smack hard.

        2. Marisa Wright profile image95
          Marisa Wrightposted 3 years agoin reply to this

          I used to think the same.   However, in recent years, stock photo suppliers like Getty Images have taken a very aggressive stance on theft of their photos and have sued bloggers for thousands of dollars.   What's really scarey is that they demand back-dated fees for however long the photo has been displayed, even if the image is taken down immediately.

    2. watergeek profile image90
      watergeekposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Great resource, Valerie. Thanks!

  21. profile image61
    matrxposted 3 years ago

    From my experience its always better to watermark photos as it not only serves as a means of protection but also it helps people to identify the owner of photograph.Many of my facebook pics where stolen earlier but now after watermarking the theft has reduced considerably.Now i use this software Mass Watermark to bulk watermark and resize my photos before i upload it anywhere.Take a look at this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKviwY-4tBY

    1. Gabriel Wilson profile image89
      Gabriel Wilsonposted 3 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you for taking the time to post this, I will certainly read up smile It is good to finally have a solution.

 
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