Who Owns the Copyright of a Photograph? Photos are considered intellectual property because they are the results of the photographer's creativity. That means that the photographer is the copyright owner unless a contract says otherwise.
Under copyright law, the photographer owns the copyright and can use it for any editorial use without permission of the person in the picture. Editorial uses are works like this article, where you are sharing information, not selling something.
Photographs are protected by copyright at the moment of creation, and the owner of the work is generally the photographer (unless an employer can claim ownership).
Basically, copyright law says that when you take a photograph, you become the copyright owner of the image created. This means you hold exclusive rights to: Reproduce the photograph. Display the image in a public space.
If you're in the image, nothing changes: the photographer is still creating an original work and thus getting the copyright. It doesn't matter whether it's a photo of you or a duck, the photographer owns it. Since the photographer owns the photo, you as the subject don't have any rights to it.
The photographer of the images whose photos have been leaked may file a claim for infringement of intellectual property under the Indian Copyright Act, as the photographer owns the copyright in the photograph (unless it was commissioned work, and the copyright moved to the person who commissioned the photograph, then ...
Under U.S. law, copyright in a photograph is the property of the person who presses the shutter on the camera — not the person who owns the camera, and not even the person in the photo.
Photographers, writers, musicians, and other professional artists retain ownership of the work they produce and then license their creation to others for use.
If you are the model or subject in the photograph and haven't entered into a contractual agreement with the photographer to gain ownership of the picture, then you will not own the rights to the photograph. Therefore in most cases, the copyright almost always ends up belonging to the photographer.
As long as you are not selling them for commercial purposes (e.g. used for advertising a product or service in a brochure, magazine ad, television commercial, etc.), you are free to sell such images. This too is one of the legal issues most people struggle with, since it may seem “unfair”.
Under federal law, your wedding photographer has the sole right to copy and distribute the photos they took, including the right to sell the photos, to publish the photos in any form, and to reproduce the photos either electronically or in a printed hardcopy version.
What's at Stake. Taking photographs and video of things that are plainly visible in public spaces is a constitutional right—and that includes transportation facilities, the outside of federal buildings, and police and other government officials carrying out their duties.
Not only do we have the standard business names, logos, and marketing materials that make up this term “intellectual property,” but we also sell photographs, a key intellectual property, as our product.
There is no doubt that, as the photographer, you own the copyright in any photos that you take (even if you never formally register them with the U.S. Copyright Office).
How long does copyright last? The current copyright law grants a long period of copyright for all visual artists. For any photographs taken after the 1988 Act became law – on 1 August 1989 – copyright will last for the life of the creator plus 70 years.
As the copyright owner, you own the exclusive rights to display, copy, use, produce, distribute and perform your creation as you see fit and approve. As the subject of the photograph, you have a right to publicity, which allows you to get paid for the commercial use of your name, likeness or voice.
If you see the phrase images may be subject to copyright, it means that a collection of pictures have legal restrictions on when you can use them without permission. If you generate photos, charts or other images in the course of your business, copyright law protects you from other people using them without permission.
There is no rule, it's completely up to the individual photographer and their business model. It could be a few days to thirty years, or more.
So even if the person being photographed is doing something that could cause them embarrassment if it were to be publicised such as walking into a lamppost or falling over, the photographer can still technically take that picture and then publish it without getting consent.
Identity thieves could potentially gather information on you from images that you share online. A photo posted on your birthday, for example, would provide them with your date of birth, whereas a photo of a new house could potentially give them details of where you live.
It's simple enough to get a copyright certificate: Traditionally, any photographer could always go to a site like copyright.gov to protect their images.
The easiest way to make your photographs available as stock images for sale is by using a third-party microstock website such as iStockPhoto, Dreamstime, Shutterstock, 123RF, or Getty Images via Flickr. Selling your photos through a stock agency like this is quick and easy.