Friday, December 21, 2007

note to nonprofits and researchers asking for free use of our images

We receive many requests for the use of our photographs from nonprofits and researchers. I've explained, in exhaustive detail on the FAQ page of our website, the time and expense that it takes to supply images to any cause.

If we’ve been kind enough to donate photos in the past, please realize that it takes significant staff time and expense to track usage of any photos. If we’ve donated photos in the past, please do not assume that we will automatically donate the use of photos going forward.

One researcher asked us for photos of schooling fish. We donated the image, and we never heard back from her again. We even had to contact her office to get a copy of the use – the image was published in Science. When she asked to use the photo again, we refused. She asked “what have I done wrong to deserve such treatment?” Her question should have been, instead, “what can I do in the future to make you WANT to donate photos.” A note of thanks, a copy of the usage, etc. will go a long way to making us want to take the time and effort to allow continued use of our images.

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