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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12188
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I own an adult website. One of the ladies on the site is

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I own an adult website. One of the ladies on the site is currently in Big Brother. I phoned an agency last week to see if any newspapers or magazines might be interested in using some of my copyright images (all photos were taken by me). They said they would get back to me, I heard nothing from them.
This morning I discovered that the Daily Star had used 4 images from my site and removed my copyright from the images. Although they have put their own text on the corner of the images with my site name on.
I wrote to the Daily Star submitting an Invoice for use of the images, the value of which is based on the National Union of Journalists. I was immediately called by their legal department trying to negotiate me down. My invoice value is £1500 they offered me £300.
Before I acquiesce and accept their offer or negotiate a higher figure, I'd like to know how strong a case I have in the small claims court. Bearing in mind they used my images without seeking permission, or making any attempt to contact me.

This is blatant breach of copyright and they know it so the only issue before any court would be quantification. They are clearly not wanting to pay you what you've asked but as that's the going rate per NUJ, that's probably what a court would award. I would stick to that figure or go down to £1250 for immediate settlement but anything in the low hundreds is insulting. Happy to discuss. I hope that helps. Please leave a positive rating so that I am credited for my time.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply. I've offered to accept £1000 and he has gone away to consider it.He maintained that the NUJ figures didn't represent the actual values normally paid for multiple images on a page. He said they were worth £75 each, I said that was irrelevant because the price for them is whatever I choose to ask, if they had sought my permission first I could put any figure I wanted on them. It would then be their decision whether to accept that figure or not., if they chose not to accept that .. then they could not publish them, regardless of what the going rate is.I didn't actually give you all the information, apologies. The figure of £1500 was actually double what the NUJ recommended as I added the extra in as a "penalty" for not first seeking permission. This probably wouldn't hold up in court, would you mind just letting me know, what would be the courts decision on that?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Waiting for your reply please.

The court's decision would be based on what you would expect to get had it been a commercial arms length transaction so an "industry standard" price. You wouldn't get damages for not being asked for the pictures but at the same time the court wouldn't in all likelihood allow them to argue that they would have negotiated a fee as no opportunity was given because they effectively stole the images from you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Clearly I would win the small claims case, so there would be expenses I could ask for ?

Yes you could, but you may have legal costs to pay, unless you have experience and know what to do in court and decide to run the case yourself.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** information so I am better placed to negotiate. Thanks for your help,

You're welcome. Do t forget to leave a positive rating on the system so that I am creditd for my time.

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