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NSW Intellectual Property Law - Copyright Infringement on Photos - Who is Liable?

Discussion in 'Intellectual Property Law Forum' started by pestman, 24 August 2015.

  1. pestman

    pestman Member

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    Hi..Ii have a copyright issue that I didn't know existed until I got an email from my web host who suspended my account until it was fixed.. this was done almost immediately by the webmaker.

    I just paid a website maker to make a website a month ago and he has apparently put 4 pictures on the site that were someone else's.. That was on Friday.. I just received a call from a debt collection agency today (Monday), ordering me to pay $3200 for copyright infringement on the photos..Not sure what to do at the moment..

    I have only just started the business and I don't have any money to give anyone.. in truth, I have $70 in bank..

    My question is .. is it my problem or the webmaker's problem, and should I direct the collection people to the webmaker? I own the website and I also have someone doing the hosting of the website. I had no idea the pictures were copyrighted.

    Any information would be helpful on where I should proceed under Intellectual Property Law?
     
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

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    Hi pestman,

    since the photographs are on your website so you are prima facie the publisher of them. However you do have grounds to make a claim against your website designer for the amount that they are claiming against you. I would write a 'please explain' letter to the web designer - he may either be able to give you information that suggests that the relevant pictures used are not in breach of copyright or alternatively he can fess up about using copyrighted material.

    Did you have an agreement / contract with him? If so, did it contain any guarantee that he would only use content that he was lawfully able to use? Even if you don't have a contract you may still have grounds to claim this from him. Obviously however you are the one caught in the middle, so I would communicate with the copyright owner who is claiming against you and let them know the situation and that you are not at fault but you are following it up with the web designer.
     
  3. pestman

    pestman Member

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    thank you for your response... I have contacted the website maker.. he can't recall where he got the pictures from.. but he did say he only goes to the free sites and downloads them... I have done a search for 1 of the photos and came across it on a website that also says free download...... I will wait until I receive documents from the claimant and see a solicitor....again ..thank you for your help
     
  4. VicB

    VicB Member

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    Hello - any update? I am having a similar issue?
     

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