Copyright issues with former team

Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
1,329
Location
Janesville, WI
Hey, guys,

I did work for the Southern Lakes(formerly the Burlington)Blue Devils semi-pro football team from 2008-2011.
I no longer do any work with them, and have been mired in an ongoing argument on who owns my images.
The Blue Devils have no licensing rights either during or beyond my tenure that is defined in a written agreement or contract.

Over the past year, I have been vigorously trying to defend my copyright on my images, including the ones I had to email to either the team owner or another company who does vehicle wraps, resorting to going on Facebook and challenging the team on my images that their General Manager lifted from Google Images. These images included ones which were attached to articles and had corresponding copyright information attached to them. Upon reproduction, this copyright information was removed and never replaced.
Other images have included images which were used for other promotional products, but never given any credit on whose photographs they were.

To make a long story somewhat short, I demanded that they restore my copyrights immediately, or that they remove said items immediately.
It is of the team's opinion(and belief) that images showcasing the Blue Devils' players are the team's property, as not only do they show the images of the team's logo, the league in which they play assumes ownership of any and all images that the photographer takes while on an IFL(Ironman Football League) field.
I was told that this was in the league by-laws. I asked them to furnish the by-laws that claim this. They could not.
They also tried to falsely claim that I signed a contract waiving my rights to my images.

Now, as I am continuing my defense of my images, I had to issue yet another copyright infringement complaint through Facebook over their making posters with a compilation image that was supposed to be for a trailer, not for other marketing purposes.
I get sent an email from their GM, alleging cyber harassment, and threatening legal action in the near future for images that they rightly own.

I should point out that at no time have I ever agreed to, in writing or otherwise, to relinquish my copyrights to my images. I have asked them to furnish proof, but they cannot.
I'm pretty sure that this claim of legal action is just a bullying tactic, but the possibility of it being true is legitimately stressing me out, as I can't afford it, financially.

Does anyone out there have a good lawyer who consults for free?
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2008
Messages
4,069
Location
Bellingham, WA
Most lawyers do an initial consultation for free, then it's up to you whether you want to hire them.

You could also see if there is a "street law" program in your town. My town has one and twice a month there are attorneys at the library that you can speak to for free.

Carole
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
1,547
Location
Famington Hills, MI
I have two thoughts. If you can't afford a lawyer and it is stressing you out, you can always walk away from it. Even if you are clearly in the right, doesn't necessarily make it the right thing for you to do. And since it's effecting your health, you might want to consider just letting it go.

And the second thing is, just out of curiosity how were you compensated?
 
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
1,329
Location
Janesville, WI
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #7
I have two thoughts. If you can't afford a lawyer and it is stressing you out, you can always walk away from it. Even if you are clearly in the right, doesn't necessarily make it the right thing for you to do. And since it's effecting your health, you might want to consider just letting it go.

And the second thing is, just out of curiosity how were you compensated?

That is true. But what I know is that they claim they are working with the League's new commissioner, who is an attorney.
I am in contact with the commissioner's good friends. They assured me that he is against any and all involvement with this team.

Compensation is limited. A couple T-Shirts, a couple sweat shirts...they also claim that I was compensated with tickets for family and friends, but that is false; any and all games I have brought anyone to, I had to pay for. A couple of hats, as well, were thrown in. This was during a period of three years.

I also had a jersey given to me for a personal project for the owner's wife.

I got nothing for pictures I sent them to use for a trailer wrap, even though I talked to the owner about something for it. He said that he would put my URL on the trailer, but never did.
 
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
Messages
5,725
Location
Annapolis
That is true. But what I know is that they claim they are working with the League's new commissioner, who is an attorney.
I am in contact with the commissioner's good friends. They assured me that he is against any and all involvement with this team.

Compensation is limited. A couple T-Shirts, a couple sweat shirts...they also claim that I was compensated with tickets for family and friends, but that is false; any and all games I have brought anyone to, I had to pay for. A couple of hats, as well, were thrown in. This was during a period of three years.

I also had a jersey given to me for a personal project for the owner's wife.

I got nothing for pictures I sent them to use for a trailer wrap, even though I talked to the owner about something for it. He said that he would put my URL on the trailer, but never did.
I'm sorry to say it, but if you accepted those trinkets you were compensated for you work. You should have walked away from the deal long ago. My guess is there were some sort of tension brewing long ago and someone got their feelings hurt, which generally brings on these types of disputes. If you didn't have a contract and were not compensated monetarily before there's no reason to cry now as there is nothing to be gained.
 
Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Nikon Cafe is a fan site and not associated with Nikon Corporation.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2005-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom