Why does a photo cause a massacre to visual China company?

Posted by zaiwu 16/04/2019 0 Comment(s)

A photo of black hole which is 55 million light-years away has accidentally opened the eyes of China, China's photo juggernaut.


Visual China is an internationally renowned Internet technology and cultural and creative company focusing on the production, dissemination and copyright trading of "visual content".Recently, the storm of black hole pictures about visual China has flooded WeChat friend circle and weibo.

Visual China certainly did not expect that in the first human black hole picture copyright watermark at the same time, they will be trapped in a huge public opinion black hole.


On the morning of April 11, some netizens found that visual China "bought" the copyright of the first black hole photo in the history of mankind.


Regarding the purpose, specification and copyright of pictures of black holes, chai jijun,the founder of vision China, said that every picture has copyright, depending on how the copyright holder wants the picture to be used.This image is clearly stated in the image caption on the visual China website: "this image is provided by the European southern observatory (ESO) for editorial purposes only.Must not be used for commercial purposes."Yet the European southern observatory in respond to interview requests made it clear that visual this copyright claim is not legal in China, ESO has never been, nor will their images copyright transfer to any other person or organization, and visual pictures of black hole was never  contacted ESO, at least so far there is no claim to be the representative of China vision people contacted ESO.


"We media" in China have made fun of "bitter vision of China for a long time", and public opinion has questioned: Does the copyright of the national flag and national emblem also belong to Visual China?The company official micro also came to a collective chorus: how did our things become a visual country?


The official weibo account of the communist youth league central committee asked, "is the copyright of the national flag and national emblem also owned by your company?"And @visual China images. Site of Ifeng, baidu, sina, haier and other well-known enterprises have also questioned why the corporate logo is included in visual China, however,visual China did not respond to this.


    People's Daily pointed out that "" visual China" "has taken down non-compliant pictures such as the national flag and national emblem and apologized.I was caught off guard by the discussion about which pictures I could charge for, but it made sense.People's Daily stressed that when copyright protection is a consensus, no one denies that photography has copyright.But there are questions about whether the copyright is established and whether the business model can stand up to scrutiny.In the caption of the post, there are four big characters "dare not to add pictures".

   Visual China's stock has also been directly affected.Visual China opened down by the daily limit on December 12. More than 40 million shares of visual China were closed, wiping out the market value of 2 billion.By stock people ridicule: the world's first "black hole" drop limit.Let the whole network in the anger of the public company is actually very few.The last is A living creature, has been delisted from A shares.


  On the morning of December 12, visual China issued a notice on the suspension of service of the company's website, saying that up to now, the company is not able to accurately predict the completion of the rectification and the resumption of service time, the company is actively and earnestly performing the rectification work, and strive to restore service as soon as possible.The company will announce the specific time when the website will resume service.At present, click on the visual Chinese website to view, found that the site is not accessible.


Several picture websites cannot be opened, such as panorama network, an image platform of the same type as vision China.It has also been stripped out of the national flag, the party flag, party emblem photos and many former national leaders portrait for sale, and did not obtain portrait rights or all property rights authorization.The panorama network has also been shut down.Panorama network prompt, the site all the pictures and contributors to a comprehensive review of the community.



Another reporter found that the Oriental IC website can not open, suspected shutdown.To this, Oriental IC responds to say: shut down old website, new website can use.Regarding how to treat the "visual China picture copyright incident", Orient IC said that it is not convenient to respond to the news related to competing products, and Orient IC itself "will make public announcement if there is any (action)".


Black hole photo storm, copyright protection becomes "black hole of money "?


According to the latest news from the national copyright administration of China, the issue of the copyright of "black hole pictures" has drawn attention recently.The national copyright administration attaches great importance to the protection of picture copyright and protects the legitimate rights and interests of copyright owners in accordance with the law.All picture companies should improve the copyright management mechanism, standardize the copyright operation, protect their rights legally and reasonably, and not abuse their rights.The national copyright administration will include image copyright protection in the upcoming "sword net 2019" special action to further standardize the copyright order in the image market.


Actually, picture company protects the copyright of picture work beyond reproach.In China's "copyright law", "tort liability act" copyright law implementation regulations "and so on laws and regulations, for the image works, pictures of owners, the use of his works, the tort liability, etc., have a clear specification, use right of unknown images for commercial purposes, or spread to others on the Internet pictures, not for the signature of the copyright owner is likely to infringe the copyright of others or information network transmission right, shall bear the corresponding legal responsibility.Strictly speaking, only with the authorization of the copyright owner can the violation be avoided.


If the picture company has been "exclusive authorization", without its permission to use and dissemination, may indeed constitute infringement.The problem is that some of the picture companies that appear to be the rights holders are themselves "not exclusively licensed".For example, the European southern observatory, which owns the copyright for the image of the black hole, has said on its website that the image is "free of charge" and only requires "the complete image or material to be presented to all users in a clear and legible manner, with no modification to the wording".This rules out any "middlemen profit margin".It also means that what some picture companies call "copyright claims" have actually constituted copyright infringement on others.


In fact, the black hole photo copyright storm, just the current picture industry chaos in a miniature.Despite the rapid development of the market economy and the basic establishment of the legal system of intellectual property protection, problems like "hanging sheep's head and selling dog's meat" in practice are not uncommon.Some picture companies for the purpose of commercial profit, brandishing the club of copyright laws and regulations, some in foreign websites to buy cheap pictures, domestic "rip-off";Some will be free network map "strong have" repeatedly "racketeer", let a lot of normal use of the picture of the individual and institutions "blame."The seemingly lofty copyright protection actually "enriches oneself and injures others", which not only infringes on the actual rights and interests of the copyright owners, but also endangers the inheritance and continuation of civilization and affects the healthy development of the entire media ecology.


And materials, including baidu, phoenix network, haier, some of the media and corporate logo image, as their own copyright images, and even some artist's pictures were the "acquired" and "with", will be absent or not for the protection the existent works "stamped" cutter, image of the company's efforts to "eat indecent", not only is the hall over the law of the border, the copyright protection becomes a fundraising tools, has long been a departure from the intention of copyright protection.


Now, tortured by the public opinion, visual China issued a statement, apologizing for the non-compliant pictures of the national flag and national emblem on the website, saying that "as a platform, we have the responsibility to review them loosely", "we have taken the non-compliant pictures offline", and "we will continue to strengthen the review in accordance with relevant laws and regulations".In fact, should "pay the bill", in addition to the responsibility as a picture platform "lax review", and that has been diluted by commercial ambition of the sense of the rule of law.From legislation to law enforcement and judicature, we should face up to and regulate the copyright disorder in the picture industry, and stop the "black hole" of abusing rights.


CCTV website: make fun of visual China should not be blind to heckling, can not destroy China in recent years to improve the protection of intellectual property rights environment, but also return to the standard of the law, clarify the problem, this is the root of the problem.What are the inevitable "inconvenience with pictures" caused by the improvement of intellectual property protection environment?What are the problems brought about by "taking the mountain as the king" represented by the visual China?Only by putting the discussion in the right direction can we promote the progress of China's intellectual property cause.


For the 'black hole picture' let's take the matter as it is and re-examine the problem from a legal perspective to learn the lesson.


In the first case, the object of copyright protection is innovative and creative labor.Visual China directly made vector pictures of other people's logo patterns and watermarked them, without "creative labor", of course, they cannot enjoy copyright. Visual China's "selling money by stamping" itself is the infringement of copyright.


In the second case, the broad sense of "second shooting", some official micro editors do not understand: their home building, their home products were shot into pictures, how to become someone else's intellectual property rights?Should not the other side give him money?In fact, commodities and buildings themselves do not produce the copyright of photographic works. On the contrary, in the process of shooting, photographers pay innovative efforts, including light adjustment, light and shade contrast, etc., so "secondary shooting" will produce copyright.


So, the name of the shooting factory, the product is not a violation of the company's trademark?The objects protected by the copyright law and the trademark law are different. What the trademark right protects is the exclusivity of the trademark, which ensures that consumers can avoid confusion. The trademark infringement means prohibited by the law are mainly used and registered on the same kind of goods or similar goods.Photographing a product with a trademark does not infringe upon trademark rights.On the contrary, because shooting is a creative labor, it produces copyright instead.


As for the conflict between photography works and the appearance patent of some commodities, the same is true.Some company official micro joked that "the things in my home become the visual country", which just shows my knowledge of intellectual property short board.


In the third case, the conflict between the right of portrait and the copyright of photographic works.This time, many public figures and stars came forward to ridicule: after some of their public photos were taken by photographers, they were sold to visual China, and they could not get any money.The right of portrait and the right of works belong to the competition and cooperation relationship, activities to let the photographer to take pictures, if not prior to the ownership of copyright, the photo copyright is the photographer.


However, 30 years ago, China's general principles of civil law explicitly stipulated that the commercial use of the portrait was prohibited without the consent of citizens.Therefore, in this aspect, visual China obviously plays the fool with its understanding, protects rights and litigates around in the name of copyright, but completely ignores the infringement of the subject's portrait right.


The fourth case is "moral kidnapping" of copyright discussion.Someone turned up some pictures of heroes in the visual Chinese library and asked: why sell the photos of martyrs for money?Why spend hundreds of dollars to get photos of heroes?...This is through the kidnapping of martyrs to engage in sophistry, muddy waters, the normal recognition of the copyright fee, was stolen into the "martyrs for money" moral stigma.In fact, praise heroes, record heroic deeds of books, audio-visual works, sales in stores are the same price;"Red song" also has copyright likewise, commercial use wants to collect fees like, should demonize become "take heroic person to change money"?


Respect for copyright does not mean "respect" for the way visual China operates;Poking fun at China's visual culture also cannot damage the hard-won social consensus on protecting intellectual property rights.


Vision of China's main problem is: first, in order to protect the name of the implementation of copyright infringement, swept the beauty of others, pretending to be the copyright owner implementation cheating, blackmail, for example, a black hole photos are open to the copyright of the copyright owner of the vision China has a phony foreign fee, in fact the visual pictures of China will open a large number of overseas copyright "possess oneself of";Ii. Visual China engages in racketeer-style rights protection, frequently makes high-price claims and requests for annual contracts, which makes media and "we media" afraid to add pictures.


It shows that China's environment for protecting intellectual property rights has been greatly improved. However, the right balance between copyright protection and communication needs to be explored. This discussion is a good opportunity.


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