(Closed) Can photographer prevent me from posting non-watermarked photos on facebook?

posted 6 years ago in Photos/Videos
  • poll: Can I post the non-watermarked photos on facebook?
    Yes : (27 votes)
    28 %
    No : (64 votes)
    67 %
    I don't know : (5 votes)
    5 %
  • Post # 32
    1314 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2006

    @MrsTVLover:  You don’t see them on a photographer’s website because you’re on the photographer’s website, i.e. if you’re there in the first place you know who took the photos. Furthermore a photographer’s intellectual property never comes into question on their own website, but it does all the time on social media when companies like Facebook change their policies regarding uploaded content all the time. So in addition to wanting brand recognition, there is the real issue that we don’t want to relinquish usage rights to Facebook for their ads. The OP has valid reasons for not liking their photographer, and I can see why they wouldn’t want to refer or promote them. However, the law is the law, and the contract has been signed.

    Post # 33
    1000 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2009

    @FiddleSticks:  if you are so against the photographer getting any referral business from you posting the images then don’t post them at all. Its illegal for you to do so, so either live with it or don’t share. You can’t just strip an artist of credit for their own work because you don’t like them. It doesnt change the fact that its their work and they obviously did a good enough job for you that you want to post the images. Have a little respect for that and do the mature thing. Don’t go around defriending or blocking her so you can try to not get caught breaking the law. People can and have been sued for Copyright breaches.


    Post # 34
    2555 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: April 2013

    fuck that. defriend and post the pictures.

    Post # 35
    9544 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2013

    The question is if facebook is “personal use” or “publishing”. If it were being submitted to a blog, I definitely think the photog should get credit. But a personal site, like facebook, seems more “personal use” to me. However, I think the legal hand, in this case, goes to the photog. So, technically, you can’t post without the watermark. Since you clearly had a really bad experience with this photog, I can understand not wanting to advertise for her. Maybe use the watermark but also include a comment that the photog was a jerk?

    And for all those people that say a watermark shouldn’t be an issue, I recently read an article about the best way to use a watermark which specifically stated that the watermark should go through an important part of the picture (ie, a face) so that it can’t be cropped out. Not all photogs with go with this approach, but there are some watermarks that are totally obtrusive.

    Post # 36
    7169 posts
    Busy Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2012

    It boils down mostly to image stealing and credit. Obviously, the photographer wants to make sure they are credited for their work. Secondly, there is a HUGE problem with newbie photographers stealing the work of others and posting it as their own to gain clients. There are a lot of companies out there who take images off the internet illegally and use them for marketing, publication, etc. T

    Post # 37
    1417 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2014 - Turf Valley

    I can honestly say that whenever someone posts their wedding/baby/etc pictures on Facebook and they have watermarks, I don’t even notice them.  I don’t really even care!  I have never seen a watermark that is so huge that it’s obvious, or one that covers the entire image.  Photographers aren’t trying to obstruct the pictures that you post to social media – they want their credit.  Part of that credit is people being able to see the great picutres they’re taking.  Covering them up with incredibly large watermarks kind of defeats that. 

    I would just post the watermarks on FB.  No big deal!

    Post # 38
    6256 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: March 2014

    Defriend/block and post anyway. I wouldn’t send any more business her way.

    If you decide not to chance it, go in and photoshop “sucks” under the watermark 😀

    Post # 39
    982 posts
    Busy bee

    The right and respectful thing to do is post the watermarked photos. If you like them enough to want to post them they can’t be that bad and she still deserves credit for taking the photos.

    Post # 40
    7169 posts
    Busy Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2012

    @EffieTrinket:  Seriously?I don’t get it, if you don’t like their policies, why sign the contract AGREEING to it, and then complain? Regardless of if you were happy with past expereince with them, you signed the contract, and this is what is says. 

    I just never understand why people hire a vendor (photographer or otherwise) agree to something, and then argue against it? 99% of the time, it’s because the client didn’t read the contract completely before signing it. It’s no different than going to dinner, ordering your meal where it clearly says “no seperate checks”, and then complaining when they won’t split the check? If you don’t like their policy, don’t eat there.

    Post # 41
    6256 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: March 2014

    @starfish0116:  Ordinarily, I would agree with you. If my (awesome) photog wants me to only post watermarked photos, I will respect that in every medium possible.

    But I’d also never forgive myself if someone on my friends list booked a person like OP’s photog based on something I posted, and then had to go through the nightmare OP did (None of which will have been visible from the pics.)

    If what OP says is true, photog may have played hard and fast with their own contract. I doubt there was language in there stating that the person could pull some of the crap that he did. (And some of it was just really bad, unprofessional behavior.) If that’s true, and his bad behavior including holding photos hostage was not as per her contract (and I imagine it was not!) why should she respect the contract any more than he did? If this guy had acted in good faith, that would be one thing, but I really don’t think she owes him anything at this point.

    Then again, maybe I don’t know the whole story.

    Post # 42
    121 posts
    Blushing bee

    I vote that instead of posting the watermarked photos, post the non-watermarked versions and tag the photographer in the description. It gives credit but doesn’t take away from the photo.

    Post # 44
    466 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    …not liking someone does not give you license to violate a contract or infringe on their copyrighted work. Post the images with the watermark.

    If you weren’t happy with their service feel free to post a status about it or say something about it in the album caption, but it is not appropriate to violate your contract just because you’re mad at your photographer.

    Post # 45
    1347 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: December 2019

    @esk716:  +1

    It doesn’t make it an eye for an eye to screw a photographer out of the credit for their work. There are people on the internet who can and will steal photos (or any art) for their own personal gain and next thing you know that photo of you and your husband is in a Google ad. The copyright isn’t to just protect the photographer it’s to protect you too. I’m not saying this happens all the time, but it has, and there’s a reason copyright laws exist.

    You like your photographer’s work enough to post it to Facebook and to share it with your friends, but just be honest about the actual person if someone asks. 

    Post # 46
    722 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: January 2014

    Well, I teach now but I did professional photography for model portfolios about 15+ years.  And I’ve known a great deal of wedding photographers as well as doing some wedding photography.


    Heres the part no one wants to hear…


    And keep in mind I’m not stating these things because they are right or wrong.  It just is what it is.  Big time wedding photographers with contracts stating you can only use watermarked images mean exactly that.  The photographer as far as copyright and legally will always own your images.  Yes, always.  If you buy a painting by some famous artist you also can’t take pictures of it with a camera and sell the prints or give them away either.  Back to the wedding photos…  Sometimes the photographer will sell you the right to use your non water marked wedding images in digital format.  Yes, the watermark is a way for the photographer to let others know he took those images.  Photographers can also track watermarked images on line.  If its right or wrong it does not really matter because the images belong to the photographer.  The bride only buys the right to limited usage usless other arrangements have been made with the photographer.  Photographers are not fond for the most part with the whole digital thing because it makes it difficult to track images.  If he saide he does not want you to use anything but the watermarked images thats exactly what he means.  Be careful with this because copyright stuff can get sticky.


    If you wish to use the images on facebook I would suggest calling him and telling him your wishes.  Now if the guy plays hard ball he may say no or may want more money.  He knows he can be difficult if he wants because the copyright laws back him up.  If anyone you know took pictures you like that are simular it would be easier to post those.  Or – you can email your images to family and friends and as long as you make it clear they should never copy or reproduce the images it should be fine.  Or – how about making an account with photobucket or something simular and only those with a password can view the images.  That way theres some type of control over the images.


    Its up to you how you want to handle the situation but be careful.  And be aware in theroy the images belong to the photographer which limits your rights.


    As a side note I always suggest for brides to have a friend, family member or even student photographer taking all kinds of pictures at weddings.  That way you can do whatever you want with those images.


    The topic ‘Can photographer prevent me from posting non-watermarked photos on facebook?’ is closed to new replies.

    Find Amazing Vendors