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Last post Author Topic: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!  (Read 7416 times)

rjbull

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UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« on: April 13, 2010, 03:02:10 PM »
Customers of Boots (the UK pharmacy chain) face interrogation over the origins of their photographs, if those photographs look too "professional."  The company's attitude appears to be that if a photo is good, it can only have been taken by a professional, and a customer wanting a copy is engaged in copyright infringement.

This came to light when Boots refused to print pictures taken by a photography student because she couldn't prove who she was, either with a letter of introduction, or headed notepaper.

Sources:

Amateur Photographer magazine, edition dated Saturday 17th April 2010, page 5.
Amateur Photographer online news items:
Boots crackdown on 'professional' photos - what's the law? (update 5.25pm)
Boots admits photo copyright blunder

Another example of the abandonment of the principle of "innocent until proved guilty," the use of copyright as a blunt instrument for beating money out of people, and insane oversensitivity to legal issues?  A patronising insult to capable photographers in the UK.

JavaJones

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2010, 03:28:04 PM »
I've heard of lots of other cases of this in the US as well, Walgreens or Walmart was one example I think. One of those "Wals". ;)

Anyway it's definitely a ridiculous thing. The zealotry and misplaced responsibility over copyright protection is quite frustrating. The store should not be responsible for policing their users, just as Google should not be responsible for policing YouTube (current Viacom suit) or ensuring that photos uploaded to Picasa are not violating someone's copyright. These are just "dumb" services, and in order to work properly in the *majority* of situations, they need to take no responsibility for what their *users* do with the service. Taking any copy protection burden will inevitably hurt real users more than possible infringers.

- Oshyan

Stephen66515

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2010, 04:12:46 PM »
Anyway it's definitely a ridiculous thing. The zealotry and misplaced responsibility over copyright protection is quite frustrating. The store should not be responsible for policing their users, just as Google should not be responsible for policing YouTube (current Viacom suit) or ensuring that photos uploaded to Picasa are not violating someone's copyright.

I disagree, but only in cases of them policing photos that could possibly be used for malicious purposes, or ones that are possibly of minors (nude photos obviously) so they can report possible child pornography to the relevant authorities and inform them who had issued them printed.

Obviously I'm only disagreeing with you for these specific purposes.

JavaJones

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2010, 04:37:57 PM »
And I disagree with your disagreement. ;) How do the store employees distinguish between "child pornography" and a parent taking pics of their kids having fun swimming, which just happens to be naked (as kids often are), or in the bath, or whatever? Not to mention, do you really think a child pornographer would be stupid enough to go and print something at a shop like that? How many people doing malicious things are really going to use a public service like that and risk getting caught? Do you think more criminals would be caught than innocents? Do you want the FBI knocking on your door one morning with a warrant after you drop off photos of your kids at the local printer? Sure it's an "innocent mistake" and you would eventually be cleared of any wrongdoing, but is it reasonable to go through that kind of ordeal just on the outside chance that it might possibly catch someone who could be doing something illegal? Surely there are better ways of finding and incriminating these people that will have less "collateral damage".

- Oshyan

40hz

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2010, 09:21:13 PM »
Is it just my imagination, or does the UK have a real fetish for experimenting with fascist behavior?  :tellme:


nudone

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2010, 02:10:27 AM »
i think we are the testing ground for the New World order - or maybe just the New Europe. Or maybe we are just a nice little island that's easy to control by big business.

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2010, 03:54:22 AM »
Well, I leave in a country from the "New Europe" but I never heard of the things that happen in UK to be happening over here...

nudone

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2010, 04:06:04 AM »
Well, I leave in a country from the "New Europe" but I never heard of the things that happen in UK to be happening over here...
i sincerely hope it remains that way. i have no idea why this country is determined to head down the path of making Orwell's 1984 a reality - maybe it's as a tribute to the man, or we can just become a giant living theme park for the novel.

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2010, 04:07:41 AM »
And I totally agree with JavaJones. It seems to me that our basic rights start to be less important, in certain circumstances, and this is not good. Probably denouncing this kind of behavior to a court of law would stop it.

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2010, 05:01:59 AM »
Well, I leave in a country from the "New Europe" but I never heard of the things that happen in UK to be happening over here...
i sincerely hope it remains that way. i have no idea why this country is determined to head down the path of making Orwell's 1984 a reality - maybe it's as a tribute to the man, or we can just become a giant living theme park for the novel.

My country is an ex-communist one. And I read 1984, there are some close resemblances of what happens in the novel with what happened. Your description is funny, but not so funny if you consider that it reflects what is currently happening.

nudone

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2010, 06:20:53 AM »
Definitely not funny when seriously looked at what is happening. It's a bit surreal at times as it just strikes me that UK government (well, about 25% of it that isn't Brussels controlled) is planning this country's future on a book published in 1948. I read Orwell's book at school - it seemed like an obvious warning to us at the time - i wonder if they still give it the students of today or if they'd care what it said anyway.


bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2010, 06:31:43 AM »
It seems to me that only a small percent of the youth population still read books. What they read now is ... facebook (or any other socialization site).

On the other hand, do you think that Brussels is to blame for it? I don't think that the euro-politicians have to much power on individual states, especially on topics like this.

nudone

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2010, 07:45:00 AM »
Is Brussels to blame? I don't think so - not unless in a few years we see that the UK was just a template for the rest of Europe.

tomos

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2010, 08:04:38 AM »
The EU is still very mixed - seems to me that most countries have at least some odball ideas/plans for their citizens. UK seems to want to hold back from involvement in EU, which I can well understand (but it is often expressed in ways that I personally dont understand e.g. not joining in with the Euro) -
but,
my point is: I dont think UK is a 'template for the rest of Europe' at any rate (of course that doesnt mean eu countries wont start following their example!)

Is Brussels to blame? I don't think so - not unless in a few years we see that the UK was just a template for the rest of Europe.
Tom

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2010, 08:16:40 AM »
I have to agree with tomos. In my country's case, if it wouldn't have been for the EU, we would have not progressed at all since 1990. The EU has a great merit in the democratization of my country.

Dormouse

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #15 on: April 14, 2010, 08:27:06 AM »
I personally dont understand e.g. not joining in with the Euro)

It means that the UK is freer to decide its economic policies in its own interests rather than having to be limited by the needs/preferences of other countries.

Of course, the PIIGS were allowed to fly - but now that other countries will have to pay to save their bacon, they might not be so keen to allow it again.

And if some countries (ie Ireland) had not been in the Euro, then they would not have had such a big bubble in the first place.

tomos

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #16 on: April 14, 2010, 09:01:39 AM »
It means that the UK is freer to decide its economic policies in its own interests rather than having to be limited by the needs/preferences of other countries.

thanks Dormouse, I'm not so good on the details (i.e. I simply didnt know)
Tom

wraith808

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #17 on: April 14, 2010, 09:07:58 AM »
And I disagree with your disagreement. ;) How do the store employees distinguish between "child pornography" and a parent taking pics of their kids having fun swimming, which just happens to be naked (as kids often are), or in the bath, or whatever? Not to mention, do you really think a child pornographer would be stupid enough to go and print something at a shop like that? How many people doing malicious things are really going to use a public service like that and risk getting caught? Do you think more criminals would be caught than innocents? Do you want the FBI knocking on your door one morning with a warrant after you drop off photos of your kids at the local printer? Sure it's an "innocent mistake" and you would eventually be cleared of any wrongdoing, but is it reasonable to go through that kind of ordeal just on the outside chance that it might possibly catch someone who could be doing something illegal? Surely there are better ways of finding and incriminating these people that will have less "collateral damage".

I totally agree with this view, and have a specific personal example that illustrates the result of the same sort of thinking.  My mom was a 4th grade teacher for a long time until she retired - 30 years or so.  During her last years there, her principal didn't like her- it seems that it was a problem of insecurity, as it seems that she (being young and female in a position that old men usually held) didn't get along with any teacher older than she, or any male teachers.  But back to the subject, my mom saw physical evidence on a child on one occasion- the kid had a welt on the side of his face.  He had never had any evidence of abuse before then- this was not a systematic thing, and she talked to him, and he said he'd smarted off to his mom, and she'd smacked him.  This incident got back to the principal, and she called child services... and in addition, the police so that my mom got carted away from the classroom in cuffs in front of her kids.  It turned out with investigation it was just that... he'd called his mom quite the bad word, and she'd smacked him across the mouth on the way to school.  Child services found no fault in my mom's actions, nor the actions of the mom.  It wasn't a regular occurrence at all.  They tried to cover up their actions by saying it was better to err on the side of caution, but it's very telling that they tried to settle monetarily with my mom out of court for the whole police thing.  My mom just got them to pay the attorney's fees and dropped it at that, even though the attorney had advised her that she could get a lot more, and indeed they were offering a lot more.

While it's true that we have civic responsibility, to prosecute someone because they don't police some other person's life seems very wrong.

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2010, 09:17:23 AM »
The problem of the Euro is that you cannot have a monetary union without some kind of common economic governance.

It means that the UK is freer to decide its economic policies in its own interests rather than having to be limited by the needs/preferences of other countries.

This is true, from what I know the UK saved its economy by undervaluing its currency. It would not have been able to do that if it used the euro.

And if some countries (ie Ireland) had not been in the Euro, then they would not have had such a big bubble in the first place.

I don't think this is correct. Can you give a source, a analysis that demonstrates this? If every country from the eurozone would have respected the EU rules probably the problems would not have been so great for them (but of course, the EU cannot take action against those that behave bad because some fear loosing their independence).
Take into account the fact that Iceland wants to join EU just because it would have been less severe hit by the economic downturn if it would have been a member of the eurozone.

Of course, being a member of eurozone has both advantages and disadvantages. It is up to every country to weight both and to make a decision if to join or not this zone. For the continental countries, I think that the advantages are greater than the disadvantages.


tomos

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2010, 10:53:25 AM »
Re Ireland, I thought it was the policies in the 80's of focusing on reducing debt that laid a good foundation for the boom times (I'm not saying joining the euro currency didnt help!) -
then when people who had emigrated (in the 80's there wasnt much else to do) returned as things got better, they needed houses or flats. So the initial 'boom' caused another boom - but like in the US the banks got greedy and were giving huge mortgages to people who could only pay them back as long as things kept getting better... so you calling it a bubble is pretty apt.
Corruption didnt help :-(
Tom

Eóin

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2010, 12:57:25 PM »
I think it's more correct to say that had Ireland not been in the EU we would not have had such a boom time. And now it's not too much of a stretch to believe that were we not in the Euro we could well be in a situation like Iceland.

And boy has this thread gone off topic :D

Daleus

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2010, 09:28:06 PM »
Interesting story.

When I played Eve Online, I played with a fellow who worked for a Boots outlet.

According to him, management at all levels were a pack of ass hammers. In his case he was always being "spied on" while at work and eventually his stress level led him to quit.
Daleus, Curmudgeon-at-Large

higherstate

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #22 on: April 15, 2010, 12:39:38 PM »
What do people in the UK think of the new digital bill that is being passed?

I haven't looked at the detail yet but it seems to cover copyright & such like.

A a brief viewing it sounds like it is not quite as draconian as the gov't wanted... but still it has things such as a clause that allows the blocking of "a location on the internet which the court is satisfied has been, is being or is likely to be used for or in connection with an activity that infringes copyright".
My Antivirus Firewall Software blog & advice.

bgd77

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #23 on: April 16, 2010, 02:03:31 AM »
I think that it is a good thing that courts are used. I think that this approach is ok. In the french version, if I remember correctly, there was a governmental agency that was able to close your internet connection. No court involved, not ok.

nudone

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Re: UK amateur photographers: if you're good, don't use Boots!
« Reply #24 on: April 16, 2010, 02:24:24 AM »
I think that it is a good thing that courts are used. I think that this approach is ok. In the french version, if I remember correctly, there was a governmental agency that was able to close your internet connection. No court involved, not ok.
oh dear. so the UK isn't the most internet retarded place after all.