PicScout Expands to Australia

Posted on 8/21/2007 by Julia Dudnik Stern | Printable Version | Comments (0)

PicScout, which has offices in San Francisco and Herzeliya, Israel, has expanded its copyright-monitoring service to include Australia. Previously, the company's image and video recognition technology and Internet crawling capabilities were limited to North America, Israel and seven Western European countries.

The company attributes the continental expansion to customer demand. Without disclosing specifics, company spokesperson Karen Shemesh said many of PicScout's existing customers already distribute visual content in Australia and have turned to PicScout with the request to monitor local use of such content.

PicScout's U.S.-based clients are traditional stock-licensing agencies, like Corbis, Getty Images and Jupiterimages, as well as smaller and specialty stock houses, such as Alaska Stock Images and FoodStock. The company also reports increasing demand from new customers in Australia.

The privately held company was established in Israel in 2002, expanding to North America and Europe in 2003 and 2004, respectively. Before venturing into Australia, PicScout conducted a full evaluation of both customer needs and local copyright enforcement abilities. The size of the Australian image market and the country's strong support for copyright laws made it the natural next step in PicScout's growth, said Shemesh.

Unlike stock-licensing companies that may need a local office or a distributor to establish a new foreign operation, PicScout's expansion broadens the territory monitored by its Image Tracker. It is based on image recognition technology, text analysis, Internet crawling and content-delivery infrastructure.

PicScout estimates that a staggering 90% of images used online are not properly licensed. "As Internet usage expands every day, so does the global infringement rate," says Shemesh. "It is vital to enforce copyrights and recover revenue from unauthorized use of image - in Australia as well as other markets."

Copyright © 2007 Julia Dudnik Stern. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz


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