You stole my photo - Episode 8

CultureTheftLink
Just off to the right of the camera during the report on the new cultural archive announced by the Culture Ministry, was, yes, my photo of Mungal Patasar. Stolen again for the exhibit created to launch the collection of cultural artifacts called Remember When.

I am reliably informed that I wasn't the only person to puzzle over photographs and video that they hadn't remembered licensing to the otherwise commendable effort at launching an online cultural museum.

Here's the thing, if an image, or a video, or a story or any other intellectual property is still owned by its creator, whether or nor it's being actively exploited, the right to make use of that work remains with its creator until a license is negotiated for its use. If you don't do that, you're stealing people's work and it really doesn't matter how noble the cause that you espouse.

So let's get this clear. That photo of Mungal Patasar that you're using in your exhibit must be licensed from me. You have no rights to it and you are stealing it, plain and simple. It isn't even that hard to find out who shot it. You could just ask Mungal, who has had a long relationship with your Ministry.

It isn't as if you're the only people to steal this photo, but don't feel good just because National Geographic did too. A Ministry of Culture and Multiculturalism should begin by having respect for the people actually creating the culture they purport to represent, shouldn't it?

Of course, this might just be a pipe dream. I've seen what you've done with your scans of Jeffrey Chock's photos of a Nrityanjali Dance Theatre. Since all old grayscale negatives need hands on retouching, it's particularly appalling that you felt comfortable posting images of the dancers performing in the snow of technical slackness.
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