Creative Commons Explored
I have at various times of my life been accused of taking irregular approaches to situations. Most have intended this as an insult or character criticism but I always gave them a look of knowing better, even when I knew I was taking an educated guess. So once again I have taken a wander over to the cliff edge and am deciding to take that leap.
Creative Commons: I will be giving away some (not all) of my images. Specifically, I will be utilising the Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs terms.
In this age of social media and the speed that stuff spreads across the interwebs, traditional copyright laws and licensing is near on painful to administer. If I chased every person who took one of my images and posted it somewhere, even just the attributed ones “borrowed without permission”, I’d probably not have enough time in a week to do much else. So it’s time to do what I can to work within this relatively new construct whilst not destroying my capacity to put food on the table.
Without sharing the pages of notes that I have made on the subject, the big thing that this will allow is relatively painless sharing of images for non-commercial use. Some of my better work will be freely available for people to use on their personal blogs, as screen savers or even as corny coffee cup gifts for all I care! If I release a picture under Creative Commons licensing, as long as you don’t use it commercially then it is fair game. Keeping in mind, if you want commercial use of an image then you can still contact me to work something out.
To be clear I am not the first full time photographer to go down this path, and some of them have significantly bigger names and reputations. Plenty of non-professional photographers have gone down the creative commons path with various photo sharing services, however the professional crowd tend to avoid being seen to give anything away in fear of never eating again. Some professional photographers have reported growth since jumping on the creative commons wagon, others have reported no losses, most are too terrified to try it.
There will be a number of changes that I make to my website in the coming weeks to accommodate this shift in business model, including new gallery structures, new content and possibly an all new look. Each change and implementation will get its own post to explain what is going on.
Please note though these are future changes that I will be implementing. It will not be applied to existing works, and it will not apply to all future work. Just like the equipment I use to take pictures and run a business, some things will still cost money!