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Story 802PRESS RELEASES 14
February 16, 2006
ASMP ASKS LEGISLATIVE ACTION ON HR 683
ASMP is concerned about bill HR 683 now pending in the Senate. If it is passed without amendment, the law might encourage trademark owners to be overly aggressive in suppressing photos that contain their marks.
Fortunately, photographers have a chance to make a difference. Contact the Senators on the Intellectual Property Subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee about H.R. 683, the "Trademark Dilution Revision Act of 2005." Ask them to restore the exception for non-commercial use of a trademark because, otherwise, the bill would result in your receiving unjustified legal threats and pressure from trademark owners to prevent you from showing their trademarks in your photographs.
You can email your letter to each Senator by following the links below. If one of these Senators represents your state, they will pay extra attention to your opinion, but all of them need to hear from you. You should also contact your state's Senators as well, in case the bill comes to a vote before the full Senate.
We do not want to recommend a model statement for you to build on. Capitol staffers quickly learn to recognize when they are the targets of organized lobbying campaigns, and they discount such letters. It is better to compose your own letter, in your own style. Simply state what action you are asking for and explain why it is important to you.
More info about the bill, along with a copy of the letter that ASMP's General Counsel has sent to the Subcommittee, is posted on the ASMP web site (www.asmp.org). The link is right on the home page.
The bill has already passed the House and is now before the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Intellectual Property. It is impossible to predict when the Subcommittee will bring it to a vote, so we recommend that you contact the Senators soon.
Here are the Senators' email addresses (web forms):
ASMP Contact: Eugene Mopsik: Tel (215) 451-2767, ext.1201, email@example.com
OnAsia Images Announces Distribution Partnership with laif in Germany
OnAsia Images (www.onasia.com) has announced a new distribution partnership with leading German photo agency laif (www.laif.de). Under the agreement laif, which is one of Germany's most established agencies, will represent OnAsia's growing archive of Asian images and features in the German speaking market.
With a network of over 100 member photographers throughout the region and over 90,000 high resolution images available for download online, OnAsia offers unparalleled coverage of Asia.
"We're very excited about this partnership with laif," said Peter Charlesworth, co-founder and Director of OnAsia. "We've been looking for an agency in the German-speaking market that we felt could do our collection justice and which embraced the values of a personalized, high quality and service orientated agency such as ours."
laif's Director, Peter Bitzer, was enthusiastic about the new partnership. OnAsia joins a growing list of premium agencies which are represented by laif. "We're very selective about the agencies we choose to partner with and felt that OnAsia's unique Asian imagery would be a valuable addition to our service in German-speaking Europe," he said.
Features will constitute a significant part of the distribution arrangement. OnAsia places emphasis on the eye-catching and informative stories that are being produced by its member photographers. "There's such a mass of imagery available online that we are keen to distinguish ourselves by communicating ideas and telling stories through our imagery," said Peter Charlesworth. "Editors respond very positively to our story pitches."
Beateworks Announces IPN as Adobe Bridge Portal
InsideOutPix (www.insideoutpix.com), the royalty-free division of Beateworks, is going live on Adobe Bridge. President Beate Chelette chose IPN as the portal, saying: "We examined all portals to Adobe and found that IPN offered not only the best price but also the fastest turnaround time to get us live quickly. They did an unbelievable job, posting our images within two weeks."
Within the past year, Beateworks.com, the stock industry's most relevant collection of interior and architecture photos, has truly become a triple threat. The new royalty-free collection, InsideOutPix.com, features images of living in and around the house-natural, organic images, never too posed or "stock-y." "Expressions of Living" is about daily life inside and around the home. The collection is upbeat and finds beauty in all things and people. Images come from a variety of photographic fields: lifestyle, garden, interior, architecture, decoration, food, nature, and still life.
Adobe Bridge is the year-old royalty-free image service from Adobe Systems, the maker of the world's top design software, including Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat. Their new service is an iTunes-Music-Store-style where images can be purchased and downloaded directly from the "navigational control center", thereby increasing both ease and functionality of stock photography for designers of all levels. Says one user, "Using Adobe Stock Photos, I can download a comp image, drag it into one of my Adobe applications, and preview the final look of my project within minutes. The sheer speed of this process has literally revolutionized my workflow."
OnAsia Digital's Keyword Database Sets Industry Milestone
OnAsia Digital Services has revealed that its proprietary keywording system now includes over 20,000 terms including synonyms, alternate forms and misspellings. The Bangkok-based company has spent four years developing its keywording systems which include a database of terms that has been conceived and structured for the classification of imagery. A structured thesaurus of terms, also known as a controlled vocabulary, is seen as essential to effective keywording.
"As the migration of imagery online continues, we are seeing growing interest in our keywording services," said Yvan Cohen, a Director and co-founder of OnAsia Digital. "The depth and breadth of our term database is one of the factors that make our image indexing so accurate and comprehensive. It's a process of continual enrichment. Today we have 20,000 terms but we are adding new terms all the time. When we start on a specialized collection we immediately set to work building up terms relevant to that area."
Initially created to service Singapore-based picture agency OnAsia.com, OnAsia Digital has expanded to offer keywording and other digital image services (retouching, scanning, clipping paths and colour correction), to a range of external clients including Greenpeace, The International Committee of the Red Cross, The European Union and a host of picture agencies and private photographic collections.
'High quality keywording enables users to retrieve the image they want from a huge database of images. Accurate search results save time, improve the user experience and ultimately create more opportunities for sales. Investing in comprehensive keywords is a way for archive owners to get much more from their collections," added Mr. Cohen.
The company says it plans to showcase its keywording technology at upcoming industry events throughout 2006 in Europe and the United States. To find out more about OnAsia Digital's service visit: www.onasiadigital.com.
Digital Railroad Names Ryall VP of Marketing
Digital Railroad, Inc. has named Paul Ryall as vice president of marketing. Ryall adds marketing talent to the company's executive team which has extensive expertise in digital imaging, stock photography and technology. In his leadership role, Ryall will be responsible for the company's worldwide marketing presence.
"Paul brings a tremendous level of industry and marketing expertise to our team," said Evan Nisselson, founder and CEO of Digital Railroad. "His combined experience working with the professional photography community and photography buyers gives him the perfect communications perspective to reach our core audiences. In addition to his international business accomplishments, Paul is widely respected in the stock photography industry. Paul will be an asset not only to the growth of our Company but also as a key proponent of marketing features that will help our members sell images around the world. We are very pleased to welcome him to Digital Railroad."
Paul Ryall is a seasoned marketing executive with an entrepreneurial spirit and a successful track record in growth initiatives for stock photography and technology businesses. Most recently as vice president of marketing for Super Stock, Inc., Ryall managed the re-branding of SuperStock's UK subsidiary, the development and promotion of their new Royalty Free brand and most recently the branding and launch of their image subscription service. As director of marketing for X10 Wireless Technology, Ryall oversaw the company's international promotional strategy and execution. In his role as senior vice president for a21, Inc., a U.S.-based commercial stock agency, Ryall developed the business model and associated sales and marketing strategies for the company's national and international expansion.
Ryall's tenure at Corbis Images includes management positions in worldwide marketing and market research. Ryall's success as an entrepreneurial leader includes his role as co-founder and managing director of Range Pictures Ltd., an editorial photography agency that was acquired by Corbis. Additionally, Ryall held executive positions with the Hulton-Deutsch Collection.
ShutterStock Offers Footage
ShutterStock (www.ShutterStock.com) has announced the launch of ShutterStock Footage, a new resource for stock video. The first among its competitors to expand into royalty-free video content, ShutterStock Footage online at footage.shutterstock.com, is now accepting submissions, and will be ready to serve customers in the spring of 2006.
The introduction of video capabilities is the latest in a series of milestones for ShutterStock. The past year has been marked by extraordinary growth for the company, a phenomenon that made ShutterStock-whose photo library now numbers close to 570,000 images.
"We are thrilled to be branching into video," said Jon Oringer, ShutterStock's founder and CEO. ShutterStock was founded to fill a gap in the stock photography market, and we see the same need among creative professionals working in video. People need premium quality footage that's easy to download, and affordable to use; ShutterStock Footage will provide just that."
ShutterStock Footage will offer a wide variety of royalty-free material, categorized by subject and searchable by keyword. Video clips will be up to one minute in length, and will range in price from $79 to $299 per clip, depending on resolution and quality. Once a video clip has been purchased, the customer can use the footage royalty-free, forever.
Much like ShutterStock, which relies on over 20,000 photographers from around the world to generate their cutting-edge photo library, ShutterStock Footage is seeking top-quality submissions from videographers. All submitted footage will be evaluated by expert screeners, subject to strict criteria including resolution, quality, and subject matter. Footage that makes the cut will be posted to the site, becoming part of the video library. When customers download a given video clip, the videographer will earn a 30 percent commission on the sale price.
ShutterStock Footage is now accepting submissions. Submission guidelines are as follows:
Length: one minute maximum
Resolution: standard resolution, 640 x 480 pixels, or higher
Format: QuickTime, WMV, MPG, DV, HDDV, AVI
Submitters are encouraged to visit footage.shutterstock.com to learn more about how to submit footage to the site. "We are constantly impressed by the caliber of photographs we receive at ShutterStock and we expect no less for the video submissions to ShutterStock Footage," said Oringer. "We look forward to building strong, mutually-beneficial relationships with talented videographers-and to growing ShutterStock Footage together." ShutterStock Footage is now live at footage.shutterstock.com and is accepting video submissions. Sales capabilities will launch in early spring 2006.