Know Your Rights As a Photographer


Feeling A Little Daring Today © Violet Aubertin 2010 all rights reserved

Been feeling a little daring today. Did a little bit of playing around with light. Found a tutorial that I had done in the past and recreated it differently this time.

      I do have something on my mind though. I have been watching a local Facebook group since it was created recently. I belong to it however I don’t and will never post to it.

      I read the rules upon signing up and was immediately alarmed with the no self promotion rule. Not because I want to self promote or do I blame them for not wanting it present on their feed. There are far better places to promote your work.

    I am however totally against the fact it appears that watermarking your images is not accepted and is considered self promotion since I am not seeing it on any of the images being posted.

    Photographers and public in general need to understand the value of a photographers work.

    Photographers in particular are far too lenient with handing over their work to just anyone. Do you not understand there is no such thing as exposure?

    You leave your work open to incessant theft. Others use your work to place on their own feed never to give credit to the maker.

    Businesses have often been found pulling images from the web and using them to promote their businesses. They are making the money. You are not.

    One can argue that there would be theft regardless of watermark however it offers one more layer of protection as well as an identity should someone share your work.

    Further more if you think you are saving your images by not posting your best work. Think again. Are you doing yourself a disservice? Not only are you not helping yourself you are not helping the craft.

    How many hours are you contributing to your image? What is the cost of making the image? What hoops did you have to jump through to get that image? These are just a few of the considerations we all have to make.

    The public need to understand that using/sharing someone’s photographic art without permission or crediting them is theft and copywrite. It doesn’t matter where you find it. Please educate yourselves.

    I saw something today that totally floored me. It was a post from the admin of that particular group.

    The post was a new cover photo. The photo belonged to someone he had removed from the group because the image violated a rule about not having boats, ATV’s and motor vehicles in it.

    Not only did he state that he had removed it, he reposted his own edit of the photo. He gave credit to the maker for the original image and took the credit for his edited image. In his own way he belittled the maker posing his views on the essence of the image.

    Since I have seen no commenting from the maker of the image I can only assume he didn’t have permission to re-edit the image either.

    So sir you might want to read up on copywrite. And to the maker of the image (and I do know who it was and she may not be aware) and all those who like to share their images in such a way – know your rights. Study up. Stop letting go of your reigns. The system will not change unless you are persistent.

    It’s not ok!

written by


A privileged descendant of immigrant settlers to Turtle Island who makes home on Robinson Huron Treaty Land which was lovingly nurtured and respected by the Anishinabek nations of the Ojibway, Potawatami and Odawa peoples.  She is a graduate of The Photography Institute of Canada and currently completing advanced studies after retiring from her working career in healthcare. Professional Photographers of Canada Accredited her in - Ornithology / Bird Photography (2021), Fine Art (2022), Pictorial / Scenic (2021), Wildlife (2022) as well as Animals (2022), Nature (2023) & Night Photography (2023). She has also been a National and Regional Award recipient multiple times over in 2021 and 2022 having images chosen to exhibit in Professional Photographers of Canada's prestigious National Exhibition 2022, Ontario's prestigious Regional Exhibition 2021 as well as British Columbia's and Eastern Canada's prestigious Regional Exhibitions 2022. Operating out of Sault Ste. Marie, ON, Canada Violet has been a freelance photojournalist for SooToday in the past and still takes on freelance projects today. Her specialties include Wildlife, Landscape and Fine Art Photography, with special interests in Food Photography and Urban Decay but practices many more well-rounded photographic skills.