Laws: Copyrighting is a form of protection provided by the law/government to the author of “original works of authorship.” There are several laws protecting original works including the Copyright Law of the United States. This law applies to all images, from the time it is created an image is automatically protected by copyright in the United States. Even though the law is clear that the moment one captures an image they are the legal owners of said image, there will always be uninformed people about the law.
Now we must set limits onto how one should react to copyright infringement. For example, if a fifth grade student uses an image in a report without mentioning who created the image I am not going to hunt him down for a lawsuit. This is still technically copyright infringement; however, in this case the so-called “criminal” is not using the image to earn an illegal profit. If a person commits copyright infringement and is making a profit then the artist has every right to file a lawsuit against the criminal; however, one should remember jumping into a lawsuit is a worst-case scenario.
Watermarking: Watermarking photos is an easy way to deter potential copyright infringement and to let potential “thieves” know you mean business. To place a watermark on a photo one must own a photo-editing software. If you do not own a photo-editing software I strongly recommend purchasing Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4. Anyway I know that Adobe Photoshop has a watermark option in lightroom 3 and 4 and I do not know how to watermark with any other software. To watermark with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 or 4 one must begin the exporting process. As always with exporting, the photos you want watermarked must be selected before hand. Once export has been clicked scroll down until you see a section titled watermarking. Once you see the watermarking option click it and a symbol will appear notifying you that the water mark has been selected. After this click export, which should be on the lower right hand side and check the photos in the file you have sent them to. The photos should now be watermarked with your name, this is because when you purchase photoshop it asks for your name and this is used as a watermarking preset. If you wish to edit your water mark go to the upper left hand side option in photoshop labeled edit and select edit watermarks. Once there you can change the text of your watermark, location, opacity, size, and style. After your watermark is to your liking be sure to click the save button and give your new preset a name.
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