Who has ownership of photos taken on my phone?

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NHolburn

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Hi there,
Sorry this is a long one....
I am employed at a salon and for the last year I have been at odds with the owner of my salon over what I am posting on my hair social media account. I am the only one in the salon who has been spoken to regarding social media photos and pretty much the only one who provides social media content for the salon on a regular basis. I understand that the salon has rights to photos taken on any device they provide us with to take photos of our work and part ownership as I was under their employment when taking the photos, I have always tagged the salon and it is on my insta account that I worked there (even if you check their insta tag page its pretty much all my work and no other stylist)
It started because my boss wanted me to take photos on a named backdrop which I was doing but then also on a different drop for myself. she singled me out again as she wasnt asking any one else to do this and people werent when they were taking photos also, i cant understand why she was singling me out but i feel its because i have educated myself in social media photography and my pictures look a bit better and also i am a more advanced stylist in some repects than other members of staff. As I say i have always credited salon in photos unlike other members of staff.
The only reason I started my own social media hair page was that i was on at them for 3 years how important it was for them to have one for marketing reason and they need someone to do it for them and they took no notice and never posted etc, I took it upon myself to make my own and just tag their profile so as some of the salons work was getting out their on social media. I feel i was doing the work for them and promoting ther salon when it isnt in my job description to do so as im employed as a hairdresser not a photographer.

Im leaving the salon now and besides other things they have brought up that i cant use any of my photos I have taken in the salon to promote myself. I have read that this is a grey area as i am the author of the photos and they were on my device. In my contract (which they made me sign because of this conversation) it states that digital images taken on a deice provided by the salon are solely owned by the salon, They never provided me with anything to take them on as i say they werent too bothered by social media until they seen what mines was like and what it attracted. most of the photos taken also were of my family as i felt comfortable asking them but no model release forms were signed to confirm them using them.

I dont mind not using the photos as i can reproduce content to the high standard which they will not be able to unfortunately. They want me to continue crediting their salon when I use any these photos which I dont understand as I wont be there to replicate the finish product ?

So after that long winded explination I want to know if because in my contract it states "digital images provided by salon" do they have the right to tell me what to do with photos taken on my personal device in future use of them even though they are tagged in the original post of the photos and i intend to keep the tag there?
also i have used the photos of my family on my website and i think they want me to watermark then with their logo, do i have to do this?

Thanks for any help you can give me
NIk
 

BannerPenguin

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Any images taken of their customers are owned by them even if it's your device.

The easiest thing to do is remove all previous images on your own social media, remove the tags, removed everything you have taken in the salon and just start posting fresh new photos only promoting yourself :)

You don't need to keep the old ones up crediting them. Just make sure to remove them all from your website/social media and phone.
 

Haircutz

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It’s not a grey area at all. The law is crystal clear.

Whilst you are employed, anything you do including taking photographs of clients, during your hours of employment, belong 100% to the salon owner. It comes under Intellectual Property and not Copyright law.

It’s irrelevant whether you signed a contract or not, the relevant fact is that you were EMPLOYED by them.

Remove all the photographs (inc. family) that were taken during salon/work time from your social media accounts and start afresh.
 

essentia

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Agree with Banner Penguin that you need to start again. If there are no signed consent forms from your family or friends then the salon cannot use them unless they obtain it, so no I would not watermark them with their logo. However, if you took photos on behalf of the salon, you also cannot use them. In future get clients/models to sign their consent, best when carrying out the consultation process.
 

TheDuchess

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NHolburn yes, I confirm what others have said. You cannot use the photos you took of your family on your phone if they were taken during your work hours.

Also your employer will have insurance and this will probably cover the cost of writing solicitors letters to you, threatening you with legal action. On the other hand, I doubt very much that you have legal expenses insurance to advise you for disputes with your employer, which you can’t win.

I’ve had no choice but to take legal action against therapists who don’t know what they can and can’t do - and think there’s nothing I can do. I did it to make sure my remaining team understood that they couldn’t do the same.

if you have any photos of your work on friends and family taken during your personal time, not taken on company premises, you have ownership of these photos - as long as you have the permission of your family to post them of course.

if your old salon agrees you can continue using photos of your work for them on condition that you credit them with copyright, that’s ok. But you don’t own the copyright yourself, even though it’s your work and your phone.
 

NHolburn

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thank you for all your advice guys, It just a lot of work pretty much my entire portfolio on instagram id have to delete so I have credited them on all my social media content as they have asked and marked it as their property in the captions as on instagram you cant change the actual photo once its been posted. Ive deleted all photos on my website too. I was also wondering if they use my work in future do they have to credit me as i am the author?

@Haircutz I know you know alot about this and im just super interested, as my employer has claim to all photos on my phone of hair taken under working hours how far does this law stretch? Like do they have the rights to then all my photos taken in the time i am in the salon? also intellectual law was not written with the Hair industry in mind and also under the copyright law which does fall under intellectual property law that is there to protect the author of the creation so i dont understand how it falls to the emloyer solely when ownership comes into play? does it not mean that they have part ownership along with the author? Im only asking as im interested and want to learn for the future.

i found this online and it seems copyright falls under the intellectual property law

thanks again
 

TheDuchess

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If you work for someone, your work belongs to your employer. That’s it. The end.

intellectual law and copyright law doesn’t really apply to anything that you do during your paid hours.
 

Haircutz

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I know you know alot about this and im just super interested, as my employer has claim to all photos on my phone of hair taken under working hours how far does this law stretch? Like do they have the rights to then all my photos taken in the time i am in the salon? also intellectual law was not written with the Hair industry in mind and also under the copyright law which does fall under intellectual property law that is there to protect the author of the creation so i dont understand how it falls to the emloyer solely when ownership comes into play? does it not mean that they have part ownership along with the author? Im only asking as im interested and want to learn for the future.
During the hours you are employed, you are being paid to be creative so the beautiful hairstyles you produce belong 100% to your employer. You may only take and use any photos of those hairstyles with the express permission of your employer. The employer may withdraw permission at any time.

When you’re employed, you own 0% of anything you create, unless the employer decides otherwise. The author of the creation (in law) is the EMPLOYER.

When you think of Chanel, Giorgio Armani, Versace, Prada etc....you know there’s a huge team of designers working for the brand. They are being paid to design and be creative. They are not credited in any way. They may not take photos of their fabulous designs and post them on their personal Instagram pages, for obvious reasons.
 

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