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Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Wed Sep 25, 2019 8:24 pm
by Cessna954
As aviation and particularly photography is a hobby, as opposed to a source of income, I've not been too fussed with placing watermarks on my images to deter their inappropriate use. That said, all my images have embedded copyright information attached.

Earlier this year Flickr announced a partnership with a web company called Pixsy who operate an online image theft service using AI technology to match your images with others on the net. Out of curiosity I set up one of their limited free accounts and left it to scan the net for matches to my published Flickr images. The results were both interesting and hilarious. The technology is far from 100% accurate and I would guess that the majority of so called matched images were actually not mine but, at best, similar other images. It appears that the AI technology ignores colours and uses other parameters, this results in hundreds of matches for say a particular aircraft type photographed from a specific angle. Sometimes the matches are hilarious but soon grow tiresome and after a while I grew fed up and gave up.

This evening, about 4 months from the last scan, I thought I would take another look for the sake of curiosity. Many hundreds of matches, about half were false and the majority of the remainder were quite harmless with social media platforms/forums linking to an image for one reason or another. You can filter results to only commercial uses and that flagged up a couple of blatant copyright thefts so I've decided to pursue one to see what happens.

This is my original image on Flickr:
ImageCessna 525 Citation Jet 1 N525FD by Neil D. Brant, on Flickr

And the copy, thumbnail bottom left.
https://www.privatefly.com/private-jets ... tion.html#

You'll see that the image has been altered with the registration airbrushed out, but otherwise it's a copy.

Pixsy operate a claims service so I've filled out the form and submitted a commercial claim. I don't know what the going rate for image use is, don't really care, but curious as to what will happen.

Of the other images found, most are attached to online discussions and photosharing around the world, all very acceptable as an enthusiast.

I'll let you know what happens.

Neil

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 6:01 am
by andygolfer
that's very interesting Neil, I'd not heard of that partnership. I may have a look at it just out of curiosity to see what any of mine are compared to.

good luck with the claim, it will be interesting to see what the response is - you may even get a free citation charter for a day to the destination of your choice!

In reality it's more likely to be their legal team who make the majority out of these infringements, that's probably why it's free. However in time it may provide a good deterrent against copyright infringement which in turn is protecting our images at no cost to ourselves.

Andy

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 3:31 pm
by Danseaman
That’s interesting Neil, I was looking at the Flickr/pixsy deal a few weeks back. Keep us informed as I’d be interested to see what happens!

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:17 am
by niallsaviation
I didnt need Pixsy
One night in work I happened across one of my pics...I had to look at it twice before I realized it was mine
It wasnt even a great shot just an interesting subject I suppose...they just cropped out my name outta the picture
ImageVH-CAO by Niall Moran, on Flickr

In use here
<a href="https://www.bjtonline.com/business-jet- ... -airplanes" rel="noreferrer nofollow">www.bjtonline.com/business-jet-news/aba ... rplanes</a>

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Tue Oct 29, 2019 12:02 am
by Nighthawke
"...As the former editor of an antique-airplane magazine..." he should know that stealing your photograph is wrong!

Have you taken further action?

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2019 6:22 pm
by niallsaviation
I sent them a mail asking them to at least credit me with the picture but heard nothing back

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Sat Dec 14, 2019 9:39 am
by Cessna954
Just a brief update on this thread.

It took about 2 months for Pixsy to review the case internally and accept that it met their criteria (no doudt an element of 'is it worth their while'). With that established we entered in to a contract allowing them to act on my behalf and that's where it's got to. It's not moving quickly but hopefully will gain some momentum now.

Neil

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Thu Jun 25, 2020 9:44 am
by Danseaman
Any updates on this Neil? Interested to see how it’s turned out :)

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Thu Jun 25, 2020 3:47 pm
by Cessna954
No recent update.

Pixsy had contacted the company responsible back in January and had set out their case to them and are waiting for a response. I'm guessing that they are hoping by not responding it will go away.

As a free service added to Flickr I'm not sure what priority Pixsy place on cases compared to paid subscribers direct to their service. I'll reserve judgement for the time, but not holding my breath for any significant outcome.

Neil

Re: Pixsy & Image Theft

Posted: Thu Jun 25, 2020 7:48 pm
by Danseaman
Cheers Neil! I’ll keep an eye out and hope for the best