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Thread: Online Image Protection

  1. #1
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    Online Image Protection

    I have read some of the tutorials here and am very interested in trying "Disabling Right Click" or adding a clear layer to my photos before putting them online to keep them from being pirated, I am refering mainly to facebook where I often get the comment - "Great shot, I'm stealing that one".
    I have downloaded a few free programs only to delete them because none of them offer any such protection methods.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Jim

    I'm sure some people will offer suggestions to you with regard to what can be done. the truth of the matter is that no matter what you attempt, the determined person will still manage to steal your work. That's the reality of putting your images online.

    A lot of people think it's a good idea to slap a watermark over their images. These, I understand, are easy to remove.

    I'm afraid that if you're putting your images onto any site, but especially those where thousands of participants will impose no standards of behaviour upon themselves, then your images will be fair game.

    I have what I think is the same as your term 'Disabling Right Click' on images on my own website. I do so in the belief that it might offer a measure of security.

  3. #3
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    Re: Online Image Protection

    I understand that some people will go to great lengths to steal others work, can you tell me how you go about disabling right clicks on your pictures?

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Hi Jim,

    If the image can be viewed in a web browser then it can be stolen. This is because all the image data has to be sent to the browser so it can draw it.

    The best protection for your images is to not show them on the web.

    If you want to show them on the web then you should put up small size images of low quality. Then if someone does steel your work at least they will not be able to do very much with it. Only give out high resolution copies when people pay you (or ask nicely).

    You should also declare copyright and state your licence requirements. This is basically asking people to respect your ownership. If they still steel your work and you find out then you can name and shame them.

    There are image search engines that allow you to try and find copies of your images that are on the web. this can help you to track down anyone who has taken your work.

    Also read the licence agreement of any web sites where you host your images. Google's Picassa licence allows Google to use the images however they see fit. I am not sure about the others like Facebook and Flickr but I expect the worse.

    The best option is to build your own website. Then you know that no-one is taking liberties with your images.

    If you want to disable right-click then you need control over the software at the web server, i.e. you need to be able to specify this in the web site design. Have a look at 500px.com. They disable any downloading of images. It is a good site to show a few prime images but not very good for showing thousands. The free version only allows 20 image uploads per week and a single portfolio folder. The site is more for building your top quality portfolio. But it may be useful for you to start sharing your best images.

    Right click can be disabled using Javascript but this is easy to turn off in a web browser. The workaround is to load the images using Javascript. So if the user has turned off Javascript then the images will not load and so cannot be stolen with simple actions. They can still be stolen by a persistent thief (see my first paragraph).

    You could also use a Flash based gallery. This will give you more control since the Flash code will run inside a host engine and so can be more restricted. However some people will not use Flash just on principle so you are reducing your potential market if you only have a Flash gallery.

    Alex
    Last edited by herbert; 14th March 2012 at 12:22 PM.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Right click disable is so easily circumvented. With Windows 7 it is made even easier, as all one has to do is bring up the Snippit application and take a screen shot of your image. No right click necessary. Boom. Copied. Done. Basically, if your entire image can be shown on the screen, it can be "stolen". IMHO, and this may not go over well, stealing my photos is the best form of flattery. I remember a blog post by Trey Ratcliff on why he does not use watermarks or bother about people stealing his images. It took me a while to find it, but you can read it here. Additionally, you can always use a service that he mentions called tineye as a reverse search for your images(s). In short, if you don't want a photo stolen, then don't put it on the web.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Wow, it seems alot of chips are flying but not much wood is getting cut!
    I appreciate and understand that if I don't want something stolen I shouldn't put it out there, it's that simple, I don't think my fb friends are computer savvy enough, nor would they go to great lengths to steal my photos, I would just feel better and they would know that I don't want my work lifted if they couldn't simply right click and "Save as".
    So, if anyone knows of any programs online that I can use to disable right clicks I would appreciate it.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    The world spends it's time passing laws to prevent these things but has never learned the you can't legislate morality. If someone wants something you have badly enough, they will find a way to steal it and there is nothing you can do to prevent that. You can only make is slightly more difficult.

    For me, my images are on SmugMug at their original resolution and free to download if you want them. But, you CAN'T steal what is 'free'. You can only take me up on my offer to take a copy for yourself. Meanwhile, I avoid all the concern, pain, and anguish of worrying about it. Enjoy, my friends. Take as many copies as you would like.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Right-click disable scripts:
    http://www.dynamicdrive.com/dynamicindex9/noright.htm

    http://rainbow.arch.scriptmania.com/...ght_click.html

    However, I'm not sure how to work this in FB, since the scripts need to be placed in the <head> - </head> tags of your page.
    Personally, I don't bother with them, and I only put low-res pictures on my personal website. They want them, they can have them.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Kris is correct, the disabling of right click (and overlaid clear images) are both techniques that are web server implemented, it can't be done to the image file itself.

    Why does it matter to you?

    Frank has the correct attitude IMHO

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Why does it matter to you?
    I can hardly believe this question came up here...

    I've had work stolen and used by profit-making companies in their advertising. A good friend of mine found one of his large Flickr photographs printed in a glossy travel book!

    So let's examine the business model here for a moment... We, the photographers, do the work for no payment... other profiteering commercial bodies help themselves to it to enhance their portfolio, without asking permission, or offering any form of remuneration.... and you're asking "why does this matter"? Of course it matters.

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    Kris V's Avatar
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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post

    Frank has the correct attitude IMHO
    +1

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    well I specialize in blurry, badly composed, & sorely exposed images. and I post so much of them(in an effort of achieving improvement) That I am happy and flattered when people announce they are taking it But most of em ask. Course I am just a hobbyist.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Bash View Post
    Wow, it seems alot of chips are flying but not much wood is getting cut!
    I appreciate and understand that if I don't want something stolen I shouldn't put it out there, it's that simple, I don't think my fb friends are computer savvy enough, nor would they go to great lengths to steal my photos, I would just feel better and they would know that I don't want my work lifted if they couldn't simply right click and "Save as".
    So, if anyone knows of any programs online that I can use to disable right clicks I would appreciate it.
    Actually, I think Alex answered your question quite clearly.

  14. #14

    Re: Online Image Protection

    Kris is correct - you can't disable right click on FB because any such script needs to be run on the server. You could run such a script on your own site to protect images there but FB provide no such ability.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Why not just place a watermark over the image or upload them in very low resolution so just viewable on the screen but way to low for printing purposes?

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    One little point:
    Just saving an image you find on the web to your hard disk for your own private use is not necessarily illegal (good thing too: think browser cache...). It IS illegal to then distribute that image w/o permission (publish it on your own site, blog, etc.). And even then, there might be exceptions.

    That said, if you see it on screen, normally you can copy/save it => only protection against theft is not publishing the image on-line. Or post an image of web size (say 1500 pixels wide), not much change of getting a nice large print out of that... (doesn't protect against re-use on the web of course)

    Remco

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Marty View Post
    I've had work stolen and used by profit-making companies in their advertising. A good friend of mine found one of his large Flickr photographs printed in a glossy travel book!
    ... and if your copyright laws are the same as those in most countries, then as the copyright holder you have full legal recourse to gaining compensation.

    So let's examine the business model here for a moment... We, the photographers, do the work for no payment... other profiteering commercial bodies help themselves to it to enhance their portfolio, without asking permission, or offering any form of remuneration.... and you're asking "why does this matter"? Of course it matters.
    The big problem is that in trying to protect against the 0.01% of dishonest folks, one ends up disadvantaging the other 99.99% of honest folks. If one looks at my gallery one will find many commercial landscape images - without "image-ruining" watermarks, in "generous" resolutions around 1000 x 500 to 1200 x 600. Do I ever get ripped off? Yep. Does it happen often? Not as far as I know. Would the people ripping me off have ever paid for the image(s)? Almost certainly not; so does it take any money out of my pocket? No. Does it irritate me? No - not really. Why? Because (a) life's too short to worry about little things like that, and (b) I don't want to prevent the paying customers from being able to judge the quality of my work ie from a business model, it doesn't make sense to "permanantly weld the front door shut to prevent the occasional bit of shoplifting".

    So "does it matter"? Yep - of course it does, but is it worth the time & energy to try and prevent? IMO, no -- I've seen many a photographer work themselves up into a lather on this very topic -- and in terms of lost time, effort, and lost enjoyment of life, I suspect that ultimately they lost the most.

    These days I just don't worry about it -- I like to pick the battles I'm going to win -- and this ain't one of them.

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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Quote Originally Posted by Hansm View Post
    Why not just place a watermark over the image or upload them in very low resolution so just viewable on the screen but way to low for printing purposes?
    Because the watermark ruins the image for everyone, and monitor resolutions (approx 100 ppi) still produce a quite reasonable print if it's at the same size.

  19. #19
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    Re: Online Image Protection

    Depends how visible the watermark is.
    Below I placed two images. The lower one is watermarked.
    I agree, it spoils the image a little not to much, but enough to "protect" the image.
    Very easy to do. In PS you can make a action and droplet to automate the process.
    Online Image Protection

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