Today I heard from a client who saw an image of her on a MSN website advertising single ladies “in your area.”
She sent me a screen shot of the page & I totally flipped out! She signed a model release for me so that I could submit it to Getty images Flickr Collection a few months ago but it had not sold. So knowing that it hadn’t sold, I KNEW it was being used without my authorization. With that in mind, I went storming around the internet for answers.
I left messages on the MSN support site, left a message, started a discussion thread with Bing via FB, & later posted something to the Flickr Getty Images contributor forum.
As you can imagine, I was quite upset. Like really upset.
To my relief, by the end of the day, I was contacted by the Bing Facebook team, letting me know that they were investigating the situation on my behalf. About an hour after that, I received a call from one of Microsoft’s managing photo editors who explained that the image in question was indeed used lawfully & that it was recently purchased from Getty Images via the Flickr Collection.
I’m a Managing Photo Editor at Microsoft and your mail and link to: http://www.twitpic.com/vls82 was forwarded to me.. This is an image we acquired from Getty (see the info below with your credit) and is in the cue for payment. We take licensing very seriously and go to great lengths to make certain our images are licensed correctly…”
Funny thing is, somewhere along the way & during my hastiness, I forgot that the image was indeed available via Getty.
Had I paid better attention, I would have contacted Getty images & let them do the investigating for me. Sigh! These days, one can never be careful with protecting your creative properties
So since all of the drama was laid to reset, I made amends with Microsoft for my hasty reaction. With quick reactions, a couple of tweets, a FB post & no research, all kinds of hell can break loose.
Oh, by the way, my client thought that this was comical & right now, she single & still very much sexy.