The News | Sony, Canon & Nikon To Raise Prices In 2 Regions, Getty Responds to $1B Lawsuit, & Turn 1 JPEG Into A GIF
Canon & Sony To Raise Prices Across All Lines
It’s been a tumultuos year for camera manufacturers, and in turn for us, their market. Early in the year we saw Nikon dealers in January get hit with a massive 18% increase on some 73 different lenses and flash units that the company cited was due to rising costs of required raw materials; then of course there was the Kumamoto Earthquake that had an immediate impact on the production and availability of sensors and more, and then there was Brexit.
It’s Brexit that we are currently concerned with, as many felt that with the ‘impending’ separation of the UK from the EU, that taxes on camera equipment would cause their prices to rise in the UK. Last week we got wind that Nikon would be raising their prices in those regions as of tomorrow (Aug 1), and now it appears as though Canon and Sony are falling in line, though their prices will be raised on August 15th.
It was always a concern that with the falling Sterling and the rocketing Yen, than camera manufacturers that rely heavily on export would be hurt, and it seems this is how they are trying to buffer it. Canon has already adjusted their 1st quarter profit forecast to reflect a 35% drop, and this together with the other brands may see a rise in camera gear prices in the UK and continental Europe quickly jump to what some say, could be as much as 20%. Time to buy?
Getty Responds To Billion Dollar Lawsuit
There is hardly a person on the planet now who won’t know of the massive $1 Billion dollar lawsuit filed against Getty Images by photographer Carol M. Highsmith, it’s been covered by pretty much every major news outlet. As a quick recap, Highsmith had donated thousands of images to the Library of Congress which then were public domain and freed anyone of restrictions on their use.
However, a company by the name of License Compliant Services, working on behalf of Getty, pursued Highsmith for ‘unauthorized use’ of some of these very photos on her site even though they were hers, and had been donated, and were very much free of copyright. The lawsuit filed is resultant of those actions which Highsmith calls ‘gross misuse’. Getty, has finally responded, and here’s what they had to say in the official release:
We are reviewing the complaint. We believe it is based on a number of misconceptions, which we hope to rectify with the plaintiff as soon as possible. If that is not possible, we will defend ourselves vigorously.
The content in question has been part of the public domain for many years. It is standard practice for image libraries to distribute and provide access to public domain content, and it is important to note that distributing and providing access to public domain content is different to asserting copyright ownership of it.
LCS works on behalf of content creators and distributors to protect them against the unauthorized use of their work. In this instance, LCS pursued an infringement on behalf of its customer, Alamy. Any enquiries regarding that matter should be directed to Alamy; however, as soon as the plaintiff contacted LCS, LCS acted swiftly to cease its pursuit with respect to the image provided by Alamy and notified Alamy it would not pursue this content.
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The case is big enough and high-profile enough that we’re sure to get updates on what resolves, but there are more than a few photographers beginning to raise their heads to see how ethically Getty behaves.
Plotagraph Pro Turns A Single JPEG Into An Animated GIF
Plotograph Pro is a new software from photographer Troy Plota that essentially allows a user to take a single still frame JPEG and turn it into a looping GIF. Making GIFs isn’t exactly rocket science not is it particularly arduous and time consuming these days, though it can be and it still requires the use of multiple frames.
The next level up from a GIF is the cinemagraph, which sort of hit stride about 2 years ago. The cinemagraph is a much different beast when it comes to creation, and requires significantly more work from capture to computer. The fact it was difficult made room for a software to make it easy, and that market was capitalized on by the not-so-inexpensive software, Flixel. Plotograph Pro seems to want to be a mix of Flixel and the common GIF. And while the creations are interesting, it still requires some work, and whether the results are as impressive as Flixel’s cinemagraphs is a matter of opinion. But even if your opinion of it is high, there’s a catch: the price.
Plotograph Pro currently costs a whopping $299, and that’s with a $50 off as a ‘pre-launch special’, meaning regular cost will be $349, and that makes it $50 more than Flixel’s Cinemagraph Pro, and that seems a hard pill to swallow. Would you pay it?