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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 11132
Experience:  30 years experience in property law.
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We run a family fishing tackle business and past 25 or so

Resolved Question:

We run a family fishing tackle business and for the past 25 or so years have published our own annual 100 page full colour glossy retail catalogue, the only one in the trade. We have always created product photographs ourselves in our own studio and quite often suppliers have asked us to do their promotional shots which we give complete control of those images to the supplier. over the past 5 years or so we have noticed that our competitors have been stealing our images from our website and using them for their own purposes, either in printed adverts or on their websites. last year we looked at a lot of competitors websites to discover that this problem is at epidemic levels. having looked at one in particular retailer for a coup[le of hours, we found over 400 of our images on his site, there were probably more. we approached him and although he took a good quantity of them down he continues to display some of them. we have approached a lot of the other offenders, but have been verbally abused when asking them to be put down, with comments like " it's only a photo!" followed by the affore mentioned abuse. My question is how can we best protect our rights, with minimum expense, as this is an annoying situation, because over the years it has taken many hours to source and picture the products in a way that sells the products for us. (PS we know they are our pics because the digital image has a source, date and time embedded in them).
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
This is a breach of copyright situation. You own the copyright in the images. Other people are stealing them as copyright infringement is theft. You need to get your solicitor to issue cease and desist letters to the persons concerned demanding that they take the images down and stop using them. If they refuse or delay to do so you can take them to court to stop you using the images and you can also claim damages for your own losses in making the pictures and also damages for any loss of revenue you have suffered arising from the illegal use of the pictures. This can be quit costly depending on the amount of legal work involved but you can ask the court to make the other parties pay your court costs which would go some way to paying your legal fees. From what you say these people have no defence to such steps being taken by you against them. I hope that helps. Please leave a positive rating so that I am credited for my time.
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