EVERY DAY is Copyright day…at least to creatives of any sort. But I heard about Friday the 19th as being a special day to celebrate and educate about COPYRIGHTS due to an issue writer Monica Gaudio had with ‘Cooks Source.’ They printed her story without permission! You can read more about this on her blog site or Jane Smith’s howpublishingreallyworks.com. I heard about it from Lucinda Dugger and her blog, Dir. of Outreach for The Copy Right Alliance.
We in ‘the biz’ know what copyrights are, and anyone using written or artistic or audible creative work should respect the RIGHTS OF THE CREATOR first! One does not TAKE and USE/PRINT another’s work without permission! Common sense we think.
But it happens. As an artist agent for 36 artists, I fight for those rights and to benefit from those rights, constantly. But a little personal story:
Over a decade ago (and after a decade of my being an artist agent) I happened to walk down the Main Street of our lovely small hometown in CT and got stopped in my tracks. There in the window of a gift store was MY line drawing of our ‘famous’ Main Street fountain on the side of a COFFEE MUG promoting our town!
Now I’d never known about this usage, much less given permission. I walked into the store and introduced myself as the artist and asked about those mugs! They apologized saying
that they thought it was ‘public domain’ since it’d been ‘in the local paper.’ interesting! I had done the line drawing for my church (next to the fountain.) I ‘gave’ permission for use of this and other drawings to THEM only…not in writing but in understanding (foolish) and felt the copyright was still mine. (it was) I walked out of the store with 6 mugs and they got my permission to use it THIS ONE PRINTING ONLY without contacting me again. I did have a conversation about COPYRIGHTS with my church as well.
It happens. But lets stay diligent and be sure we respect and others respect our own copyrights for our own work.