Ars Technica: Internet rages after Google removes “view image” button, bowing to Getty. “Google’s Search Liaison, Danny Sullivan, announced the change on Twitter yesterday, saying it would ‘help connect users and useful websites.’ Later Sullivan admitted that ‘these changes came about in part due to our settlement with Getty Images this week’ and that ‘they are designed to strike a balance between serving user needs and publisher concerns, both stakeholders we value.'”
9 to 5 Google: Google Images to remove direct photo links as part of Getty licensing deal. “Back in 2016, stock photo service Getty Images sued Google, alleging that its Images search engine promoted piracy. Rather than going to trial, the two parties announced a licensing partnership today that will result in several changes to Google Images.”
PR Newswire: Getty Images acquires world leader in cycling photography TDWsport (PRESS RELEASE). “Getty Images, a world leader in visual communications, today announces it has acquired TDWsport, the world’s leading cycling photography business and archive. As part of the deal, Tim de Waele – owner of TDWsport and a 27-year veteran in the industry – has joined Getty Images as a staff photographer to lead the company’s cycling coverage.”
I $1 billion claim against Getty has been dismissed after an out-of-court settlement. (And would I love to have been a fly on the wall for THAT one.) “Three weeks after a federal judge gutted photographer Carol Highsmith’s $1 billion copyright claim against Getty Images, the two sides have ended their dispute with a settlement of the remaining claims. The terms of the settlement, over minor state law claims, were not disclosed.”
A photographer is suing Getty for licensing images she donated to the Library of Congress. “Photographer Carol M. Highsmith has sued Getty Images for copyright infringement, alleging ‘gross misuse’ of 18,755 of her photographs of Americana…. She has been providing the images to the Library of Congress since 1988 for use by the general public at no charge.” They’re not public domain but more like CC-BY; see the article.
I guess it was inevitable: Getty has launched a VR group. “Getty Images, responsible for many of the stock photos you see on the web, has launched a VR division called Getty Images Virtual Reality Group. … The company already has 12,000 360-degree images, but will boost that number considerably at the 2016 Rio Olympics. As the official photo agency, Getty will equip each of its photographers with a 360-degree camera to supplement their regular still cameras.”
From the Center for Protection of Intellectual Property: Google Image Search and the Misappropriation of Copyrighted Images. “According to a study by Define Media Group, in the first year after the changes to Google Image search, image search referrals to original source websites were reduced by up to 80%. The report also provides before and after screenshots of a Google Image search and points out that before 2013, when a thumbnail was clicked, the source site appeared in the background. Not only does the source site not appear in the new version, but an extra click is required to get to the site, adding to the overall disconnect with the original content. Despite Google’s claims to the contrary, the authors of the study conclude that the new image search service is designed to keep users on the Google website.”