Seems that the AP like virtually all other syndicators, publishers, media conglomerates and corporations of whatever size and nature, get real testy when they perceive that their copyrights are being violated. They sic their minions of lawyers on the alleged infringers with a vengeance. They rarely think twice before asserting what they believe, to be their constitutional rights to valuable intellectual property. When the tables are turned however, these same institutions using the very same legal teams, feign shock and surprise when you have the temerity to assert your claims of infringement against them. After all, they think that what’s yours is theirs and and theirs is theirs.
See for example this story in the Wall Street Journal: http://tinyurl.com/74nqw6x
This is a case about which we have no comment at this time nor claim any “inside info”. We point you to it to demonstrate (only) the vigor with which the AP is pursuing what it perceives to be, justifiable intellectual property (IP) claims. Do these guys know something about the formula (IP=$$) that you don’t? How come they get it but most creative people don’t despite our constant and frequent reminders?
Three part answer for those of you who avoided taking physics:
Part 1: Intellectual Property Rights equals money frequently illustrated by use employing the shorthand IP=$$;
Part 2: AP has money because it syndicates images created by you guys for fees and/or commissions. Regardless of its tax status as a “not for profit”, money for their lawyers seems readily available. These companies make money on your creativity. Perfectly legal and frankly, quite clever;
Part 3: If your work is registered with the Copyright Office, the financial playing field is substantially leveled by among other things, your ability to obtain legal fees and statutory awards in the event you settle or prevail on your claims.
Unfortunately, too many creative people will read this, go “Tsk, tsk” and not follow up and not do anything to protect their work, like registering their work. They then end up in Ed’s office wondering what happened. What Ed wonders can’t be repeated. And so by not doing what we keep saying to do to protect yourself, saying it until we’re both blue in the face, what’s yours becomes theirs.