Feelings about NowPublic?
February 11, 2007 7:35 PM   Subscribe

What is NowPublic? Anyone have experience with them?

Today I uploaded a bunch of my pictures of the Obama event to my Flickr account. Tonight, I got a message from someone at NowPublic because they want to use one of my photos.

I don't care who uses my pictures or what they use them for. All the photos are released under a CC Attribution license. I don't understand why, if NowPublic really wants a photo, they don't just take it.

My concern is with actively associating myself with this site. Do they have a good/bad reputation on the internet? Until now, I'd never heard of them. The whole thing just seems a little too spam-esque for comfort.
posted by sbutler to Computers & Internet (9 answers total)
they seem relatively legit. In fact the ap seems to have formed a "partnership" with them.

Interesting concept, though, social news. Kind of what wikinews on wikipedia is already.

However, it's a bit unclear why they felt the need to contact you when they could have just used the photo with attribution.
posted by jourman2 at 7:51 PM on February 11, 2007

However, it's a bit unclear why they felt the need to contact you when they could have just used the photo with attribution.

Other than being polite. When I worked in journalism, if the AP picked up one of my stories, they'd send me a clip of it from another newspaper along with a nice card saying they'd found my story worthwhile for syndication.

Either that or they don't know what CC licenses are.
posted by Brittanie at 7:59 PM on February 11, 2007

I mean, that explains why NowPublic would contact you instead of merely using them according to the permissions you gave in your CC license.
posted by jepler at 8:00 PM on February 11, 2007

Interesting. I just got the same message, asking for permission to use one of *my* pictures from the Obama event (part of a lovely photoset, by the way).

While I was sort of flattered, I haven't yet given it. The story is almost all quotations from other stories, and I'm not sure why I'd need to sign up for an account with them in order to give permission for them to use my picture from Flickr. I also notice that this is a private company that can sell your info if/when its purchased by someone else.

Also, it's been a while since that rally was held. How much interest can that article now have for people, I wonder? I think I'll need to get a better sense of the site before signing up for an account with this company, although I hope I don't make the author of the Obama story sad.

Oh and also: Champaign! Woo-hoo!
posted by washburn at 8:40 PM on February 11, 2007

When I want to use someone's photo, I think it's just decent courtesy to at least let them know, whether it's Creative Commons-licensed or not. It only takes an email after all, and if someone were to use one of my CC photos, I'd like to get that nice little email.
posted by badlydubbedboy at 2:26 AM on February 12, 2007

Thanks guys. After thinking about it, I signed up for a NowPublic account and went through the process to import my pictures. In addition to all your answers, it occurred to me that having authors repost their content is also the easiest, most generic legal way to handle copyright. Perhaps that's another reason why they do it this way.
posted by sbutler at 8:24 AM on February 12, 2007

Probably because I make a living by taking pictures, I am angered by sites like nowpublic.com and newassignment.net (who partnered with Reuters). The pictures and reporting are abysmal ("the story is almost all quotations from other stories") and the owners of the site and other media entities profit without paying contributors. Serves to dilute media with bad journalism and simultaneously devalue worthwhile coverage. Someone shooting that Obama rally for the AP would have gotten at least $150, but now they've got your pictures for free. Small-size web usage of single stock images like on nowpublic is probably worth at least $100 and possibly more, depending on audience size, prominence on the site, and duration of usage. Having your name printed next to a worthless image, i.e. one that has been given away for free, is horrible for you and every other photographer out there. You've been taken advantage of.
posted by msbrauer at 11:49 AM on February 12, 2007

They asked me about using one of my photos, and I declined, because clicking the photo wouldn't link back to my Flickr account. I think that would be fair and easy to implement.
posted by TochterAusElysium at 12:27 PM on February 12, 2007

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