Picture: Rain storm clouds at sunrise over the still waters of Emerald Bay State Park, a National Natural Landmark in the South Lake Tahoe region, California
Ack!! I can’t believe it’s been nearly four weeks since my last post, but I’ve been very busy with a couple assignments and trying to get my book out the door. However, I saw something today that I thought was important enough to raise a flag of caution. It seems the National Park Service, a division of the Department of the Interior, is holding a photo contest to help promote its National Natural Landmarks. I noticed in last year’s winners selection of images a shot taken by someone from my old neighboring hometown of Lafayette of spring poppeis on Mount Diablo. Curiousity, the devilish feline side of me wanted to find out just what kind of rights this contest was asking for. Shocking, but true; if you enter the contest, your entry becomes the property of the NPS to use or sell. What do you get in return? Perhaps a small token prize if you’re in the top three, and (10) copies of the calendar if your image is used. (Hooo-Rah!)
The ‘offending’ terms:
Submission of an entry shall constitute the grant of a non-exclusive, royalty free license to the National Park Service, and its’ sublicensees, to reproduce, display, prepare derivative works, distribute to the public by sale or other transfer, and to utilize the photograph submitted for any governmental purpose, including but not limited to publication on the World Wide Web, interpretive publications, and commercial uses.
So if the National Park Service sells one of your entry images that wasn’t even selected for use for $1,000.00, you’ve just given the government a thousand dollars, and you won’t likely even receive a notice of the use or sale, much less a handshake or a “Thanks you.”
I’m happy to support the National Park Service, primarily through my purchase of an Annual Pass, but I’m not sure I want to just hand them over any of my images on a silver platter.
Image ID#: ltas-2003
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