Who is the copyright owner of a photograph?

Name Ruecker asked a question: Who is the copyright owner of a photograph?
Asked By: Name Ruecker
Date created: Thu, Apr 22, 2021 6:59 AM
Date updated: Wed, Jun 29, 2022 1:47 PM


Top best answers to the question «Who is the copyright owner of a photograph»

  • Copyright is a property right. Under the Federal Copyright Act of 1976, photographs are protected by copyright from the moment of creation. According to the U.S. Copyright Office, the owner of the “work” is generally the photographer or, in certain situations, the employer of the photographer.

9 other answers

Copyright Owner. In the UK, the owner of the copyright in a photograph is the author: the one who makes the permanent record. Therefore, if it had been Ellen who had pressed the button, she would own the copyright.

If the image credits aren’t shown, it’s always worth checking the website that’s hosting the image as this may contain details about who owns the image or where the image was sourced. For the 3 options above, another option is to use a tool like PicScout Search to try and locate the copyright holder’s details:

Under U.S. law, copyright in a photograph is the property of the person who presses the shutter on the camera — not the person who owns the camera, and not even the person in the photo. Unless a written agreement exists that makes the photo a work made for hire, any person you ask to take your picture with your camera owns the copyright in that photo — not you.

The copyright in the work of authorship immediately becomes the property of the author who created the work. Unless the photo is a work made for hire, then the other person – not you – owns the copyright. However, depending on the circumstances, you likely have an implied license to use the photograph for personal uses.

Q: Who owns the copyright in a photograph once it is taken? In general, when the shutter is released, the photographer who pressed the button owns the copyright. An exception is when the image falls into the “work-made-for-hire”(also known as “work for hire”) category.

Only the copyright owner, (or his/her authorised representative), can give permission, so you should contact the photographer, or his/her company, directly for consent. For images published on the Internet, it is typical to contact the webmaster of the site in the first instance, unless the site provides contact details for the owner of the images.

Under the Copyright Act 1968 the copyright owner of a photograph is the “author” (s 35(2)) and the “author” of a photograph is the person that took the photograph (s 10(1)).

Copyright in photography means that you own an image you created. The law says you created that image as soon as the shutter is released. The photographer who pushed the button owns the copyright. A photographer will own that copyright throughout their life and 70 years afterwards.

When you ask or commission another person or organisation to create a copyright work for you, the first legal owner of copyright is the person or organisation that created the work and not you the...

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