Wednesday, February 18, 2009

An epic fail for Google and Life

Google hosts the Life photo archive. That is great. What is not so great is that they claim copyright where the copyright is clearly expired. There is an end to copyright and, while it is perfectly ok to watermark pictures that are obviously out of copyright, claiming copyright is not.

The idea is that if when you like a picture, you buy a framed version of that picture. The problem with these framed pictures is that you do not see what you get. This picture of an unidentified native American from 1897 for instance includes the full sized scan with the colour references and other stuff that are great when you restore a picture, but are lousy when you want to hang the picture on a wall.

So in essence it is an epic fail. Copyright is claimed where this is indefensible and, the product sold is not how people want to see it in a frame.. Even so, what is the point of a "premium frame with styrene glazing" when the picture is not of the quality of one of Commons restored images ?
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