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Holly Kuchera

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Everything posted by Holly Kuchera

  1. Okay..... interesting development. I have not heard back from the lawyer, but got a "new referred member" notification from DT this morning by someone with the same name as the lawyer - I think as a contributor. Hmmmm.... I'll have to watch and see where this goes.
  2. For the third time, I am not infringing. Lawyer is calling to help me get money from apparel company he believes IS infringing. Is that a short enough answer that people will read and understand it?
  3. Okay it seems some are reading my message wrong. 1) Lawyer cold called me regarding a couple of my images being using in the garment industry. 2) He wanted to make a proposal to me so that I could get money from the images being used (he thinks) illegally. This is not about me being accused of using images improperly. This is about making money from suing people for supposedly using my images improperly. I am going to ignore the messages for now and if the lawyer calls me back I will ask to see the evidence of said mis-usage and if he can prove the images were not legally purchased. If he can produce both, I'll turn the matter over to the appropriate stock agency. Why am I ignoring? Cause the whole thing seems like he is banking on my greed to get a payout of his own. Sorry, Minnesotan here. Not a lot of greed
  4. Turns out the business number being forwarded to the home number is in error. It is still a separate number, unfortunately at the moment it goes to my home voice mail. (And right now none of it works as hubby was attempting to fix the problem and made it worse .... I can live without business calls until the weekend, so no big deal.) I have his name, number, address and law firm and would NEVER give out private information over the phone. The cold caller was not the one having issues - he was calling to "help" me with someone possibly using two of my images in a non-legit way. I've looked up the law firm online and aside from being a law firm of 2 people, they seem legit. All that said, the mere idea of a lawyer calling me to "help" me get oodles of money in restitution from "bad people" is fishy to me. What's in it for him.... I know what's in it for him, a hefty commission. No thank you. Thanks for the wisdom everyone. I think I'll make the choice of ignoring this lawyer for a few days. If he calls back I can always claim I was on a shoot with no access (or somesuch). And then I'll let him know that since the images in question are sold through multiple microstock sites that have many different rules as to how images can be used I can't say if they are using them illegally or not. If he wants to the research and find out where the images came from and what license was used, feel free. But I'm not paying for it. I can't afford it!
  5. So what would you suggest? Ignore him or politely tell him to get lost? My fear is any communication on my part to him opens up an "established business relationship", which according to FTC rules allows him to keep contacting me.
  6. Exactly. While I believe in the goodness of man, this seems a bit fishy.
  7. Hi everyone, got a question for you... I received a cold call from a Washington D.C. lawyer today regarding a couple of my images "that have been used repeatedly by apparel manufactures." Everything in my being says to ignore this guy as 1) It's a cold call. 2) He didn't call my business number - he called my home phone. 3) He has shown me the images in question, which certainly are two of my best sellers and as I sell them through multiple agencies I haven't a clue to whom or for what purpose they've been sold. Anyone have this happen to them? This is actually the 2nd "legal entity" who has contacted me regarding a few of my wolf images. The first guy I told I didn't have any way to confirm or deny the images hadn't been sold on microstock and my paying a lawyer to investigate wasn't worth my time or money (considering my current image profit rate). He "kinda" accepted that, but continues to send me emails whenever he finds another "violation". Advice, please. I hate talking to people on the phone and really don't want to open up a line of communication with yet another "legal entity" if they feel it gives them the permission to keep contacting me. Thanks. -Holly Kuchera *edit* I did some checking, and realized that I don't really know what number he called me on as my phone system is currently set up to "divert" calls from the business number to the home phone (I'll be talking to my phone guy - the hubby - about that when he gets home from his day job). In addition - our home phone # is unlisted so it's likely he didn't call that. But also interesting is that he sent followup emails to the business email address, which is listed on our website, AND my personal email, which is not. Granted, my personal email address could be obtained in any of a hundred ways...
  8. PETA wouldn't make up fake stories... right? (oh wait, they have...) That's why I'd like to hear it from SS staff or from a contributor who has been told this by SS staff.
  9. Saw this today in my MSG Monthly Update: http://www.[do_not_advertise_other_microstock_groups]/shutterstock-com/shutterstock-ban-all-unnatural-photos-of-apes-and-monkeys/ and the original article: https://www.diyphotography.net/peta-makes-shutterstock-ban-unnatural-photos-apes-monkeys/ The gist: "As a result of a recent appeal from PETA, Shutterstock has decided to ban all photos of monkeys and apes in unnatural situations. The photos will not only be banned from Shutterstock, but also from its subsidiary Bigstock. The ban includes the photos of primates in all settings unnatural to them. But, even if the photos are digitally manipulated to just look unnatural – they are also not welcome on Shutterstock either." Can anyone - contributor or someone from SS confirm or deny this? Thanks...
  10. According to sales, it's these three: And man, do I hate that second one, but it still gets regular sales so I can't take it down.
  11. Yes, but there are many other similarities. Enough to make me think it's the same person with two (or more) accounts. Images are the same in both and Artist bio is identical. Just my observations and too much drama for a Saturday morning for me ... back I go to reality.
  12. Multiple accounts. https://www.shutterstock.com/g/creativegraphics Big no, no here, "Kreative". Use caution.
  13. It's not a big nit. In fact, it's infinitesimal compared to other problems that other's have mentioned here on the forum. But.... Please, SS. I'm starting to get a real sour taste in my mouth from looking at this image every time I log on ... it's been years since I saw something sweet (come-on, laugh. you know you want to.) Happy Friday, everyone
  14. I certainly hope they don't dump Classic anytime soon. I HATE the idea of everything going to "the cloud". It's like people pushing cloud based services have never experienced bad to no internet connections or businesses "disappearing". I want my files on my server, that way I know they are safe and sound and won't get hacked or corrupted (and if they do, it's my own fault). I guess if they do dump a stand alone, non-cloud based LR I'll have to find another method, or limp along with LR 6. Most of the "advances" haven't really been necessary to me, I've had a stock workflow that has worked for me for 10 years. As for the per app pricing. We here got Premiere when the hubby started getting more serious about video. I pay $10.68 per month for LR/PS and $21.36 per month for the addition of Premiere - that includes tax. We also have licensing for PS and LR 6 due to the 2 computers rule. Both my husband and I have LR/PS on our desktop computers and LR6 is on our work laptop. I dumped PS off the laptop once I realized is was too much for the laptop (simple processes took forever to run) and we didn't use PS much while traveling anyway. I too hate the subscription based services - my husband hates them worse. We probably pay more now for Adobe programs than we did when we paid for the entire suite and had to renew our license everytime a new major upgrade occurred. But, what can you do... Adobe doesn't much care if we leave - there are plenty of other users out there.
  15. Really? I guess it all depends on what the client is using the image for. Wildlife oriented clients would use "fawn" - average clients (who don't know any better) might use "baby deer". Personally I try not to use "baby" as a keyword in any of my animal photos cause I don't need them showing up in searches for human babies.
  16. I think everyone should maintain access to a holiday calendar and refer to it when sales are down. There might be a reason ... like right now, it's Labor Day weekend in the US. Many people cut out early from work on Friday and don't return til Tuesday. International sales shouldn't be affected, but (for me) they are low in numbers compared to US sales anyway. Happy weekend, all!
  17. I'll add my two cents to the conversation between mandritoiu and Nannycz - Just recently I got a request from another photographer to use use some of my wildlife photos in her workshop advertising. She is performing the workshop at a particular location and as I have been to that location many times, the owner pointed her in my direction. She politely asked to use some of my photos with credit and copyright. I responded with a polite response of how I enjoyed the photos of her that I have seen and pointed her to my SS and FT accounts. She responded that she'd buy the images she needed from SS. And she did - several EL's which were probably a more expensive license than she needed to get. The moral of the story? When you get requests like these, be polite, don't immediately go off on the "How DARE YOU ask for my stuff for FREE!". Point them to your portfolio and see where it goes from there. They'll either never contact you again, ask again if they can get them for free (at which time you can simply tell them no) or they'll make some purchases. Why burn commercial bridges until you have to?
  18. You'd think that someone (me) who is married to a guy who works for an airline and therefore has certain flight "privileges", I'd fly more. It isn't flying or security or anything like that that stops us, it's TIME OFF. But, we do have a big Maine trip planned for this fall, and camera equipment is a necessity, so....
  19. https://www.pdnonline.com/gear/tsa-rules-photographers-electronics-carryon/ So glad hubby and I finalized our TSA pre-check applications last weekend!
  20. If the images don't show up in "Pending approval" and "Currently being processed" shows up under the image, I know the images are stuck and will delete and resubmit. It's okay when it's only 1 or 2 images, it sucks when it's 30 (as just happened to me from a batch I uploaded yesterday).
  21. Really, Laurin? " San Diego Zoo - http://zoo.sandiegozoo.org/faq-page#t148n3711 Frequently Asked Questions General Can I take pictures at your Parks? We encourage guests to take photos. However, as a not-for-profit organization, commercial use of photos taken at our facilities is strictly prohibited. Entering photo contests does not infringe on our copyright policies as long as photos taken on our grounds are not published. Lens size and other equipment is up to you. Please be courteous to other guests who may wish to get a close look as well. Some tours prohibit bulky camera equipment, tripods and the use of selfie sticks." I'm sure they can't enforce the rule; but because of this they have the right to sue any photographer who sells images if they find them. Personally, I'd rather not risk that.
  22. Glad you clarified that as some of the images on page two are mine and my husband's If you are referring to these: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/puma-613293746?src=0fl5xpqjbYDyq-Uk4T45_g-2-78 Um yeah. Not to mention that that submitter is going to get in a hell of a lot of trouble if the zoo she took them out finds out. I took one look at her cougar images and knew exactly where they had been taken. And going through her portfolio, the first 48 pages are from one of the two zoos in the area. Now, I know that the one zoo has a STRICT no commercial photography policy unless you have permission from the zoo .... and that many photos available for commercial photography... well I'd hate to be in her shoes if it was discovered and she doesn't have that permission. I'm not gonna nark on her because I don't know the whole story, but people! - be aware that if you show backgrounds on images that can clearly be identified as being in certain locations where commercial photography isn't allowed without permit, you could get into trouble. And yes, I think I'm okay, but I'll continue to carefully police what I submit. I realize fully that the ones I deleted were way too close to similar and I should never have processed them for stock. That's the reason that you found "the animals are dynamic enough that you'll always get different shots" - I make sure to pick and choose carefully. Trust me, burst mode is not unknown to me Thanks!
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