This is my understanding.
Artist A makes a piece of work.
Artist B lends own artwork to Artists A to have said artwork photographed by a professional photographer; let's call one of these photos Photograph C.
The artwork is shown in a group exhibition by Organization D. Photograph C is "loaned" to local Newspaper E, (owned by Media Company F,) and goes on Organization D's website.
Three years passes.
Artist G makes artworks and exhibits at Gallery H. Artist G is interviewed and artworks photographed by local Newspaper I's Staff J, (and a photographer?). Staff J's article appears and all is good.
Newspaper I's Staff K, however, compiles events/calendars section, and dips into Media Company F's pool of photographs and picks Photograph C to decorate the notice for Artist G's exhibition; Artist B uses the same techniques as Artist G.
Tiny hell breaks loose; there are at least five more peripheral players who know almost all other players to a certain degree; said events/calendars may have appeared online only for one week only, (it's gone now); the copyrights of the photograph is murky, as is Media Company F's policies. You can imagine it all happened in a very small place.
Artist B, perhaps ill-advised, protested to Gallery H instead of/at the same time as Newspaper I. Gallery H, most astonishingly, was unaware of the misleading photograph in the events/calendars section concerning their exhibition, and did not inquire/protest to Newspaper I.
Staff K unapologetically explained picking Photograph C from Media Company F's files. The two Newspapers do not, to my knowledge/experience, explain to interviewees and all concerned all photos are free-for-all within the larger Media Company F. Sometimes they don't discuss copyrights at all. Not sure if Staff K even checked with Staff J if there were photos from the exhibition.
So what did I learn from this?
A) Know my rights, study copyrights, and if someone wants to use my photos, discuss the extent of what I'm allowing. (I find this very hard, but Ben does it well with all his photos.) I don't mean I want to hold on to all my photos in all instances with an iron fist, but to consider various possibilities and decide/know where I stand in the first instance, how far I will allow others to go. With me, usually a heads-up before the event covers most instances, but this is thin ice.
B) Clarify my thoughts, and clarify understanding/agreements if other parties are involved.
C) Do everything I can to prevent whatever is beyond what I can allow; learn technology/computerese if need be.
D) In the end, don't be surprised to find anything anywhere and don't be afraid to ask/protest.
Attitudes towards copyrights in New Zealand is alarmingly relaxed, both by the pinchers and the pinchees; I didn't even like the term "pinch" used to lighten the impact of what is in some cases theft.
The above case was made worse by two distinct views on copyrights from different backgrounds. I feel sick at how not alarmed some involved are; Ben and I worked for IBM so you can imagine where we stand, but by the same token, understand once something is on the Internet, anything goes, including a "proper" media company with a public publication (!).
The story ends with Artist B ringing Gallery H to explain the situation, in addition to communicating with one of the artist exhibiting at Gallery H. And pointing out to Staff K it is very slack journalism and to mark Photograph C as something akin to "not for general use".
What are your thoughts?
By the way, Interweave has a free Copyright 101 for Weavers.