I've been meaning to give you all a final update on what happened with my photos of a certain Charlotte author. I finally got an answer back from Getty, and the Observer about their selling of my photos. The Observer/Getty can sell any photos of mine that they publish or distribute, and they keep the royalties. However, I still retain the rights to the photos, which allows me to sell the photos to other outlets.
So, here's how to score it. If you saw my photo of that author and it was credited to me/Observer/Getty/MCI, or just Getty/MCI, they got the money for that. If the outlet, like People, NY Daily News, or others bought it from me directly, I did receive money for that usage. Sure, I'd like to make money on when my photos are published, but it is a better deal than if I had a full-time deal with the Observer. In that case, the paper/corporation owns all rights to the work. Photography has been great to me, but sometimes, in all businesses, you must pick your poisons.
So, I didn't get rich from all this, and that's okay. That was never the goal. The attention was nice for a few days, and I made some new contacts, and learned a lot about how that business works these days.
The one outlet I missed in all of this was that someone from CBS emailed me via Facebook about the photo the weekend that the story, but for some reason the email went into the Other section, and I didn't see it for two months. Argh. But you can't win 'em all, even though we still try to.
I saw the author at an event recently. Sadly, it will probably be a while before she says hello. I don't think I'd know what to say, anyway, but I hope that she's doing well.
March 6, 2013