Friday, February 26, 2010

Getty Images CEO Jonathan Klein - Delusional, Deceptive, or a Liar?

Yesterday, Getty Images CEO Jonathan Klein was interviewed for almost four minutes about the Getty deal with the Olympics on CNBC. At about 2:28 into the interview, the issue of the Tiger Woods image made recently was raised (see link in 'Related' at end of article), and at approximately 2:47, Klein says "... we don't do paparazzi images..." and I about fell off my chair. In fact, when I read it over on Paul Melcher's Perception Management blog post, I couldn't believe it, I had to watch it myself, so, before I go any further, and to avoid and suggestions about taking something out of context, here's the video to watch for yourself:

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Now, let's just take one more precaution here, and get the definition of Paparazzi:
pa·pa·raz·zo (pä'pə-rät'sō)
n. pl. pa·pa·raz·zi (-sē)
A freelance photographer who doggedly pursues celebrities to take candid pictures for sale to magazines and newspapers.
Ok, with that established, I'll encourage you to head over to Paul Melcher's blog (here) and look at several of his examples of paparazzi candid photography that Getty has. As we wrote here - Getty Images And Paparazzi Pictures (3/9/09), Getty's site is replete with images that are paparazzi images, celebrities captured in unguarded moments, intrusive actions by photographers to get "the picture", and so on. At right is a previous example of a paparazzi image that Getty Images had on their website - in other words, this image is proof positive that Getty Images is in the business of profiting from paparazzi images, whether or not they shot them, but their photographers do shoot them as well.

With all of this, the question about JDK's World and what increasingly seems to be some form of an altered reality arises. The proof is on his own website, so is Jonathan Klein just delusional because he doesn't peruse his own content? Or, is Jonathan Klein trying to deceive the public so they think that Getty Images is pure as the driven snow? Or, is Jonathan Klein telling a bold-faced lie with a straight face? Without knowing if he looks at his own content, which, arguably is in the tens of thousands of images in any given day, there is a fraction of a chance he doesn't know and thus, can't be lying, but then what does that say about his knowledge of the business he co-founded?


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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fair Use of Copyrighted Works - A Reasoned Perspective

"Fair Use" when it comes to copyrighted works gets tossed around by so many people often trying to hide behind it so as to not have to pay for use when they should, or because they were too lazy to find the owner (or, to be fair, couldn't, and decided to do it anyway.) Public Knowledge held the first World's Fair Use Day back in January (more here) and PC World (here) cited participants of that event as having said "...U.S. copyright law should be updated to better reflect the changing ways that mashup artists and other new content creators use existing works," seemingly suggesting as a premise that, somehow, these mash-up artists had the right to create derivative works from a copyrighted work without the originating creators' permission. So, I thought this might be a good opportunity to ask the Executive Director of The Copyright Alliance, Patrick Ross, to share his thoughts in this guest post.

By Patrick Ross, Executive Director, The Copyright Alliance

The phrase “fair use” may conjure up the image of legal fights between goliaths, say Google as a defendant against name-your-copyright-owner. Or it might make one think of someone’s cry for mercy when caught avoiding licensing, a cry many photographers attribute to Shepard Fairey.

There is merit to having the ability to make reasonable use of another’s copyrighted work; as a professional journalist most of my adult life I practiced fair use every day. It is also worth noting that not just journalists but millions of Americans are finding innovative ways to make use of this legal exception to the rights of copyright owners.

Unfortunately, some who wish to see dramatic new reductions to the rights of artists and creators are twisting the definition of “fair use” to the point where it more accurately resembles “free use.”
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Recently a Washington-based lobbying group called Public Knowledge declared a new global holiday -- “World’s Fair Use Day” – undeterred by the fact that fair use is almost exclusive to U.S. law. They also built a conference around this day of celebration. The event’s premise? The false accusation that fair use is under assault by big media baddies “who want to own our culture.”

On one panel, mash-up artists discussed their rather creative uses of others’ creativity. They also tended to contradict themselves.

For example, one suggested that income on an artistic work should basically be capped, after which it would be considered free culture and part of the public domain. He later said it has been his lifelong dream to support himself with his art.

Another praised the art of filmmaking, then said that creating a film from scratch, rather than mashing up existing work, would be terribly cost prohibitive because “writing a script and filming is very expensive.” Well yes. Yes it is.

The most glaring contradiction, however, was that these mash-up artists were supposed to be there to discuss how copyright law stifles them, but instead they were discussing creative projects they had successfully produced within the law.

The resulting – and I suspect unintended -- message was that fair use is in fact alive and well. So why incite fear of the loss of our culture?

Because fear is the ultimate tool to effect social change. If there is nothing to fear and you still wish to effect change, then you must create your own bogeyman.

This philosophy is well understood by the conference organizers, who have an ambitious agenda to deny creators almost any say over the reproduction and distribution of their creativity.

That agenda has nothing to do with fair use.

What artists and creators should recognize – not to mention the policymakers targeted by these advocates -- is the tried and true tactic of “moving the goal posts.” First you redefine fair use, and then you conflate it with your objections to the broader restrictions of copyright.

Here’s an example. A few months ago, Harvard professor and self-proclaimed copyright critic Charles Nesson filed in court an argument that allowing the distribution from his computer of hundreds of copyrighted songs to millions of strangers was “fair use.” Fortunately, the judge found this so preposterous that she didn’t even allow it into the courtroom. The result? Nesson’s client pled guilty to online infringement before the trial even began.

Nesson said before the trial that his case was about “defending the average Davids against the corporate Goliath.” Not to be outdone in the cliché department, the founders of an infringing photographic online magazine compared themselves to Robin Hood. Their “Pilfered Magazine” encouraged the submission and online publication of copyrighted works submitted without the permission or even the awareness of the photographer. When did stealing from an artist become conflated with a band of “Merry Men” stealing from the rich?

Photographers rallied in recent weeks against “Pilfered” and now every infringing image has been taken down. The founders now say they are “re-imagining [their] perspective” and going forward will only post photographs with permission. Nesson was rebuffed by a judge, but the “Pilfered” founders were reversed by a cacophonous chorus of creators.

Fair use is nothing but a limited restriction on the rights of creators. If you dislike creators having rights, the easiest avenue to taking those rights away is to slip a crowbar into an existing limitation and pry it open. The best way to get folks on your side is to incite fear. It’s that simple.

All copyright owners and creators should speak out for their rights and help others distinguish between fair use and infringement. They can do so knowing that fair use is alive and well in our society, enriching our culture while not unduly undermining the critical rights of artists and creators.

Select Insightful Copyright Alliance Blog Posts:

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Digital Photo Rights - Don't Just Give Away The Farm

The FUTURE of all photographic uses is digital. No one doubts that print will be the antiquated backwater in just a few years. Learn from the mistakes of the publishing industry which gave away its content for free and then watched their print income evaporate, almost overnight. Learn from the publishing industry that ad/usage rates in the online arena had to be a sustainable figure on its' own, and not a parlor trick on a balance sheet.

Your images - your intellectual property - must be valued in both print and digital/online realms at a sustainable level. Just as photographers survived the shift from film to digital by establishing pricing models that were sustainable, and shunned the notion that clients attempted to foist upon us by saying "it's digital, so it's cheaper, just give me a jpeg." Now is the beginning of the time where the shift to digital will become even more pronounced, with the Wall Street Journal and New York Times beginning the shift to charging for online content, and the iPad setting the stage for the next evolution, just as the iPod/iTunes duo set the stage for the future of digital music.

Below is a great WIRED Magazine video on their iPad version:

No, go and read Paul Melchers piece - Share It - where he does an excellent job in advising you about avoiding a few of the pitfalls that are just down the road.

(Comments, if any, after the Jump)

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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

10 Questions for: Richard Kelly

Over the years, there have been good elected leaders at the helm of ASMP, and less-than-stellar elected leaders. One of the great leaders is photographer Richard Kelly, and he most certainly should be re-elected, and also serve a second term as ASMP President. I first met Kelly when I travelled to the Pittsburgh ASMP chapter to give a presentation over 5 years ago, and then we started working together on the ASMP Strictly Business 2 series. All along, Richard has demonstrated a street-tested savvy as an ASMP leader because he is a full time photographer as well. He knows all to well the reality of being in business, because he IS in business, first as a photographer, and then, brings his skills to the fore to lead ASMP in the right direction.

While Richard has submitted a ballot statement, he also answered a series of questions and answers that were posed from the membership. His ballot statement is here, and the ASMP Q&A is here. However, we thought it of value to continue our "10 Questions for..." series, and call upon Richard for his answers. Below are his answers to our questions, and while yesterday marked the first day you could cast your ballot online here, I encourage you to first read his answers, and then, yes, go vote for him You'll need the password that ASMP e-mailed you with the subject line "Your ASMP election information".

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1. You're running for re-election to the ASMP board, and I presume, you'd like to return for a second term as President. Why?
For the last 3 years in my board role, I've had an opportunity to move the needle on important initiatives for photographers across the country. My role as President allows me to directly impact the profession we all pursue so passionately--so yes, I'd like to return as President to continue working for our members.
2. What achievements are you most proud of during your tenure on the ASMP board?
Education has been a big part of my agenda, so as a board member Strictly Business 2 and the continuous growth of the ASMP seminars series are both important achievements for me.

In the big picture, its been the opportunity to take a critical look at the short and long term challenges and opportunities both for publication photographers as well as ASMP, and then applying that research to writing the new Strategic Plan. That plan is the map that ASMP will navigate over the next five years and it was important for us to have a master plan with clear outcomes that will positively impact the industry.
3. Aside from the achievements in #2, what achievements or projects during your term as President are you most proud of?
I spoke to a number of members when I started this role, and what I heard most often was that they wanted more information from the organization. I think we've made great strides in improving the ways and frequency of how we communicate with chapter leaders and members. We want members to be informed about the industry at large--as well as about what ASMP is doing in response.

Under my leadership, ASMP has embraced social media not only as a means of communicating with members but encouraging our members to learn and use these new tools. ASMP was the only photography organization to have a professional analysis of social media companies terms of service agreements, arming the larger community of photographers with information they could use when utilizing these web services.

I also initiated both the multimedia and motion video educational programming and went the next step by creating the motion video study group, which delivered an industry resource for photographers now creating motion video for clients.

Looking out beyond today, I challenge the board to think differently, I encourage our members to think about what it means to be a professional, in an age when everyone with a camera is a photographer, I emphasize the need to renew our focus on copyright and register our work with the copyright office and give people the knowledge to do this by hosting hands-on workshops.

This focus on copyright goes beyond the actions of our members--its also working with software companies, independent developers and the copyright office to create registration access during the photographers regular workflow, and being part of the conversation with the big thinkers of copyright in New York City at the Registration Counts Symposium April 21, 2010.
4. If you are re-elected to the board and in turn, for a second term as ASMP President, what one or two projects are you most excited about?
Continuing what I started, pushing ASMP and publication photographers to expand business strategies and models to adjust to our new economy and business demands. ASMP is the thought leader of our industry and I want to take that up a notch. But what photographers really need today is advocacy and education to help them move their businesses in a new direction.
5. How do you see the creative landscape for photographers (i.e. ASMP members) in the coming next few years?
This is a great time to be a photographer, the opportunities for telling your story your way is unprecedented. It is very exciting when I see photographers using these new platforms.
6. How do you see the business/economic landscape for photographers (i.e. ASMP members) in the coming next few years?
It is going to be challenging--not just for ASMP members and photographers but for small businesses in general. We'll survive only if we venture forward and leave behind some of the 'way it used to be done' thinking, in favor of, 'how can we do it better?'
7. How do you think that ASMP will serve its members as it regards the landscape of dealing the the realities of business in the near term?
We continue to focus efforts on opportunities for photographers to expand their markets and creativity. There is not one solution that will work for every photographer, but we want to provide them with educational and support resources to rethink their businesses.
8. ASMP, I believe, benefits from full-time working photographers serving on the board, because they know in a way no one else can, the realities of being in business. Can you share a few of your recent assignments with us (with or without naming clients, as you are comfortable)?
In my market I do primarily editorial and corporate assignments. In Pittsburgh, that translates into annual reports and features about business and innovation. I am currently working on an annual report for a non-profit that has me traveling throughout the state and I just completed two editorial projects featuring people who are making a difference in the community.
9. It seems that ASMP has grown in the past few years. How do you envision the growth of ASMP will be in the near term?
I believe ASMP is offering photographers very targeted and relevant information and resources and I do not see any other photographer group offering what we offer. In the past year, many new professionals are entering the freelance world especially from newspapers and these photographers want the same resources that the longstanding members want and need. This is the growth ASMP is seeing and will continue to see short term.
10. How has what you have learned as an ASMP member benefited your bottom line?
That my peer network is unparalleled in helping me resolve challenges, that I can't ever ignore marketing and that I can't stop moving at the speed of the rest of the industry.
If you don't vote, then you have no right to complain.

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Sunday, February 14, 2010

PLUS – Completing the Circle

It was great to learn last week that The American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA) has not only joined the PLUS Coalition, but has assigned their V.P. Harold S. Geller (LinkedIn: Profile) to take a seat on the PLUS Coalition’s Board of Directors. Good to see AAAA stepping up to the plate on behalf of its members. The PLUS Board includes 13 seats – one seat (and one vote) for each industry that creates, distributes, uses or preserves images. Only non-profit organizations can hold a PLUS Board seat, and all Board members are unpaid volunteers. PLUS clearly did it right, setting up an industry-neutral board from the beginning.

AAAA has also indicated that they will be incorporating the PLUS standards into Ad-ID, the digital asset management system used by the world’s largest corporations to manage tv commercials, images and other content. Ad-ID is jointly owned and operated by AAAA and the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), one of the most powerful trade associations in our business or any other.
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When I participated in the PLUS standards building process several years ago, I did so along-side 2000 other volunteers, including dozens of art buyers from ad agencies of all sizes, many from the major-league ad agencies. I quickly found that photographers’ clients are every bit as enthusiastic about PLUS as photographers. Why? PLUS was and is the only example of clients and photographers joining forces on a global scale to improve our industries for the benefit of all concerned.

I have to admit that at first, I had doubts that the photography organizations could set aside their differences and cooperate effectively on a major initiative. Fortunately, they could. Every major photographers’ association in USA and many abroad are members of the PLUS Coalition. I also wasn't sure that clients and stock agencies would join in and collaborate with photographers on a level playing field, to build industry standards. Yet, they did. The publishers, designers and ad agencies are well represented within PLUS, as are the stock agencies (PACA, CEPIC, Getty, Corbis, Masterfile, Alamy, etc). And of course, I had no hope that the museums and libraries would join in. After all, they are among the most vocal proponents of the orphan works legislation, fair use, and sharing of works. Not only are the museums and libraries (J Paul Getty Trust, New York Metropolitan Museum, Boston MFA, etc) participating in PLUS, but even organizations like Creative Commons are collaborating with the Coalition.

I now understand why. There is no downside to PLUS, for any industry or profession. PLUS standards can be applied to an image licensing model and are designed to remain relevant in a continually evolving marketplace. PLUS is about clear communication, and clear communication benefits everyone. Except perhaps the lawyers. By describing rights using words and definitions approved by all industries, and by using IDs that uniquely identify every rights holder, every image, and every license, we can avoid misunderstandings with our clients and help them and everyone else to make informed decisions about using our images.

PLUS has made remarkable progress. In just a few years, they have pulled together an incredibly diverse group of stakeholders, successfully developed our industry’s first business standards, and are now working on integrating those standards into common applications that we already use in our workflow. This is the key. Adobe has been a major supporter of PLUS from the start, and I am looking forward to seeing Adobe integrate PLUS across the board in all of their applications. Tim Armes built a very nice PLUS for Lightroom plugin, but I’d like to see Lightroom fully integrate PLUS. The DAM software companies are now working with PLUS, because the major publishers have all announced that they will require photographers, stock agencies and all other vendors to use the PLUS standards. Hindsight has build PLUS into their licensing workflow. Apple has got to wake up and build PLUS metadata into Aperture. Some other companys just seem to be asleep at the wheel, lagging behind on adoption of the standards. Everyone benefits from the PLUS standards, yet some seem to think that by ignoring the PLUS successes and in-roads, they will somehow not occur. That's like turning your back on a tidal wave and pronouncing "wave? what wave?" simply because you can't see it cresting over your head.

Kudos to ASMP, APA and NPPA for their recent contributions of Authors Coalition royalty funding to PLUS, which is the perfect initiative to make use of those funds. Kudos also to AAAA for taking a leadership role in the PLUS Coalition and completing the circle.

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Boston Globe Staffers - Self-Inflicted Cuts Boost Parent Company Profits

While Boston Globe staffers, believing the hyped up dire situation presented to them, last July, accepted an almost 10% pay cut (combined salaries and benefits) during tough contract negotiations with management. Amidst a down economy, these staffers felt they had no choice when presented with a deal that was repeatedly rejected in previous months. (Boston Globe's biggest union accepts wage and benefits cuts, 7/21/09).

Meanwhile, even while total revenue was down, the $20,000,000 that staffers willingly gave back to the paper, boosted the $90,900,000 in net income that the parent company of the Globe - The New York Times Company - showed on it's books (Times Company Reports Profit for Quarter and Year, 2/10/10).
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Thus, the company was able to further pay down it's debt load, and further benefited from an up-turn in the stock market to aid their pension obligations. As the company ramps up plans to charge for some of it's online content, a 10.3% increase in the fourth quarter for advertising revenues meant $102,000,000 in income for the quarter. This helped reduce the net loss of 4.1% for the entire year, partially attributable to the recession last year. Thus, it would be reasonable to project that online advertising revenues will grow further in the coming quarters, without a recession to bog down growth.

It is unfortunate that staffers were hoodwinked into accepting a substantial cut in salaries and benefits, because the end beneficiary is the corporate profit centers, at the expense of the staffers whose content makes the paper great.

Remember, it's not personal, it's just business. Next time, don't give in, they are profiting out of your pocket-books.

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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Aperture v3 - Out of the Gate

With over 200 new features, Aperture 3 is a remarkable (albeit long overdue) update to it's preceding version. Let's take a look at some of the highlights (and low-lights) of the new application.

In many ways, Aperture 3 ("A3") is playing catchup like Windows is constantly playing catchup with OS X, when it comes to Lightroom.

Aperture has a very nice feature with the importing of both RAW and JPEG files. The downside to importing RAW files is that it's so damn slow, regardless of Aperture or Lightroom, and that's not the applications' fault, it's the reality of all the data being moved around as well as preview building. A3 gives you the option of importing both RAW and JPEG when you ingest, but the challenge, to date, has been that so often when speed is critical, you just handle JPEGs, but then have to go back and manually marry-up the corresponding RAW files, or just start from scratch. Now, A3 allows you to re-ingest the RAW files later, and match them to the JPEG. That's pretty slick. Further (and this is really slick) if you've applied metadata/cropping/toning to the JPEGs, you can sync these between these now re-matched files. So, for those working on deadline with JPEGs, but still shooting RAW, you're in for a real treat.

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Another feature that has significant potential is the ability to export a library of images to share. This way, you can send a library to a client and they can browse it. There are a few problems, however, with this. Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) chose not to allow you to specify shared preview file sizes/dimensions, which can make libraries unwieldy. Second, of course, your client, likely working in an enterprise environment, won't have Aperture, and that's a requirement. Unlike the Filemaker application, where you can share out content to people who don't own Filemaker, or Acrobat, for people who can get a free Acrobat Reader application, you still have to have a full version of Aperture to see the images. Apple's position is that this is a feature designed to exchange libraries between a laptop and desktop, and not so much for distribution to clients, and that would more sense, and further, more beneficial.

A3's metadata interface has received a significant update and, frankly, looks better than Lightrooms'. The panel is better than Lightroom for sure, but the browsing is still better in Lightroom than A3. Further, A3 has taken a feature from Photo Mechanic, which allows you to right-click on a photo with GPS data, and show the location that the photo was taken, on a map. Further, A3 allows you to create custom data fields, which is pretty cool. As photographers move in the direction of geo-tagging their images more and more in the coming years, they will find much room to grow with A3's GPS functionality. Further, you can also reverse geo-tag, selecting, say, all images with metadata that identifies it as being shot at the US Capitol, and then assigning the GPS coordinates to the image. There is even more support in there, so be sure to go poke around all of the "geo" features.

A3's new image adjustments capability, allowing for localized editing/corrections/adjustments is a huge addition in this version, and was a required given to this version, since Lightroom has had this for some time. A3's localized editing is substantially improved over Lightroom, and one of the really interesting new features in A3 is the ability to "extend" your control of image data in curves, with an "extended curves" capability, which enhances custom recovery in, for example, highlights you think are blown.

When it comes to image recognition, it seemed also a given that Aperture would include the face recognition "Faces" capability from Omron Global that iPhoto '09 has. One of the challenges that this technology has, is that it not only gets better as you use it to identify certain people, but it might also get worse, if, say, you're identifying profile images often. While there is some anecdotal discourse on this subject, Apple seems to be of the opinion that it won't really have a big impact. That said, I can sure see a benefit to being able to use it to ID all 535 (plus delegates, I know) Members of Congress so I am not hunting for names after a shoot. Faces recognition happens on ingest, and it certainly wasn't designed for hundreds of people, but I wonder at what point the technology would bogg down if too many faces were in the system. Further, one can only hope that A3 is escaping the "Racist Camera" problem that Time Magazine reported on regarding some cameras and computers (here). Also, you can set up Faces to be a smart folder.

One really big addition is A3's ability to handle video and audio, and you can bet that the folks at Adobe (NASDAQ: ADBE) are now going to scramble to play catchup on this one. Aperture's really got some slick interfaces to let you manage video and audio, thanks no doubt to their genius with Final Cut Pro.

A3 also has some interesting slideshow themes and features. This idea came from the ease of making slick slideshows in things like iPhoto and iMovie, but one feature that temporarily made it into a previous release but then was removed is the ability to set a slideshow to a particular audio track. Now, the feature is back and in full effect. I sure could have used this when I had to do a slideshow in 10 minutes for a client recently, and the last 2 minutes of images were showing to no audio. Even better is the ability to set unique slide durations. Simply play the slideshow and hit the return key when you want the slide to change (for example, to a beat/tempo) and you are good to go, "recording" the duration as you watch. The slideshow feature has more controls and customization worth looking into, so be sure to check this out.

A3 continues to offer awesome photo book capabilities, and here is one place where total Apple integration makes Lightroom look like the poorly-abled relative. A supercharged feature is the ability to include travel maps within the book of photos. While this is a very pro-sumer/consumer feature, it's nice to have none-the-less. One of our vendors, GraphiStudio, is among the third party book producers that has a plug-in for Aperture, so you can do amazing custom albums/books. I have been hugely impressed with the quality of GraphiStudio books, so if you're an Aperture user, check out their plug-in here. To learn about the other third-party book producers, check here.

Lastly, it's now 64-bit, and that will ensure a speedy application all around. There doesn't seem to be any stated upper limit on the number of images in a library, however some users with upwards of 200,000 images are not reporting significant slow-downs, so we'll wait and see as more people get huge libraries and what the real limits are.

So, what are the downsides? Well, I'm a huge proponent of DNG - which is an openly documented format that Adobe created, and Aperture just doesn't play well with images that I have in Lightroom and might want to move into Aperture. Yes, Aperture can ingest DNG's, say, from a Leica camera that shoots DNG. However, if, I ingest a RAW file, make adjustments, and then export the DNG and build a new preview based upon my adjustments, Aperture will initially display that adjusted preview, but then on the preview build stage of ingest, will wipe it out and re-build a preview based upon the untouched data. Could you migrate to Aperture with a ton of DNGs that you've worked on? Not if you want to keep that work. You can, however, export metadata to a DNG.

Next, where is the PLUS metadata in Aperture? Why Apple would prevent Aperture users from embedding industry standard rights metadata is beyond me. What's worse, PLUS rights metadata that is present in an image file will be invisible to Aperture users, which unnecessarily creates significant liability for image users. With every trade association on the planet endorsing the PLUS standards, Apple needs to wake up, jump on the PLUS bandwagon, and add the ability to read and write PLUS metadata.

Also, Aperture is Mac only, so PC users are SOL. Let's take a long-view look at this issue. For years, creatives used Macs because they were (and still are) easier to use/maintain/etc when it comes to essentially everything under the sun. Adobe hasn't been focused on fixing things that the should have when it comes to Lightroom, and this leaves them open to a repeat of the "Premiere" debacle. For those of you not in the know on this, Adobe had Premiere, their major-market-share video editing application, that was trounced to within an inch of it's life by Final Cut Pro, just like Adobe's InDesign destroyed the defacto Quark design application that owned that market. While many people bought Macs for the abilities of Final Cut Pro, I don't see people doing the same for A3.

There isn't any clear conversion path between Aperture and Lightroom, and there should be. I know this is an oversimplification of intellectual property rights issues, but comparatively, just as you can open a Word file in Wordperfect, or Excel spreadsheets in other applications, so too should you be able to open up a DNG with corrections from Photoshop or Lightroom. I know there are proprietary issues there, but Adobe and Apple should stop acting like bratty 13-year-olds (like they still are with Flash support) and just play nice on this. I know that A3 and Lightroom render things differently.

In the end, if you're an Aperture user that was considering switching to Lightroom, don't. If you're a Lightroom user that really wants to be able to manage your video, audio, and stills in one place, then you have one heck of a migration patch with weeks (or longer) re-building your RAW files to where they looked in Lightroom. However, it just may be that you Lightroom users may have just found a really great management tool for your audio and video in a separate application. For this reason alone, I can tell you I've already ordered my Aperture 3 Upgrade to my licensed seats.

My recommendation: Buy (full version link)

(Below is my proof of purchase!)

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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Northern Short Course 2010 - New Brunswick, NJ

For the last decade, I've supported the National Press Photographers Association Northern Short Course as a presenter. This year, for three days, we'll be in New Brunswick, New Jersey (exit 9!) March 11th through 13th. I present on, what else? - the business of photography. Here's the entire program, which includes William Foster on social marketing/websites, Paula Lerner on multimedia, Tom Sperduto on lighting, courses on audio, Final Cut Pro, and portfolio reviews, and more!. Check it out! (I blogged about it last year too here).

(Comments, if any, after the Jump)

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Costs of Photography - Explained in an Exceptional Way

Naples Newborn and Children's Photographer Nicole Zumaeta (known as Nicole Z) has reposted a really exceptional job that explains what the value and costs are associated with hiring a professional photographer, which was originally written by Marianne Drenth. So, rather than try to summarize what Marianne's written (and which Nicole had the permission to re-post), I commend you to head over to her blog and check it out!
(Comments, if any, after the Jump)

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