Screenshot of Tweet from Camera about Daily Mail theft
News & Events

NEWS: Daily Mail Steals Photographer’s Images Without Permission, Pay, or Apology

January 20, 2023

In a move breaking copyright law in the UK, The Daily Mail used Alexandra Cameron’s image of Emily Clarkson without permission online and in print alongside a headline that repulsed both photographer and portrait sitter.

Cameron is a professional portrait photographer who has worked with brands such as Adobe, Sony, Boden, Atlantic Records, etc. She has also been published in a number of magazines like British Vogue Online, Marie Claire, The Guardian, Elle Online, and many more.

In the UK, as stated within government guidelines here, original works cannot be used without permission, and specifically, “a photograph cannot be reproduced for the purpose of reporting current events”. (Source: UK Copyright guide)

Upon discovering one of the images from a maternity shoot for Clarkson was used without permission online, Cameron emailed multiple contacts for the paper about the situation with an invoice attached for the misuse fee.

However, no response was given and Cameron took to Twitter to speak out about it.

Clarkson also spoke out on Instagram about the misuse of the photo.

On Twitter, Cameron shares that she received a phone call from the Daily Mail that also let her know the image had been used not only online but in print as well.

They offered a settlement for the misuse but it was too low for Cameron who fired back with a higher fee for both the online and print usage.

The Daily Mail agreed, however, no payment has been made at the time of this writing.

To add insult to injury, Cameron then found out they had also used another image of hers online, of Helen Carr in October 2022. She has since sent another invoice for this, which the Daily Mail again offered a lower amount than appropriate.

Cameron has refused to accept the low offers from the Daily Mail and says she will pursue legal action if they do not pay the appropriate fees.

She also shares on Twitter that the Daily Mail has approached her for photos in the past and she has never granted them permission.

Photographers are no strangers to having their photos used without permission by media outlets and companies. While there are protections, it can be a hard slog to recover the fees as evidenced by the Daily Mail’s action and response or lack thereof above.

Follow Cameron’s Twitter here.

Tweets were used with permission from Cameron.

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Graham Orbell
    January 20, 2023 at 6:36 pm

    Years ago before computers when I regularly photographed television personalities and program productions for TV program publicity one of my photos was used without my permission or payment in an advertisement for a product, even though all my prints were marked on the back with my details and marked copyright. I sent the company an invoice that was paid without comment. Obviously I was too lenient, and I should have doubled my fee. But it shouldn’t have to work that way. It’s much easier in these days of digital production for publications to steal photographers work and much harder for photographers to monitor the theft which could be international. News outlets themselves would be first to sue if other publishers stole their stories.

  • Reply
    Jasp
    January 21, 2023 at 7:14 am

    I’m not sure I want 35mmc to post more stuff like this. Of course I don’t like what the paper did here and even I as a non Brit know about this paper in particular, but to be honest that behaviour is not really uncommon and I don’t see the need for this page to “report” on the event by re-telling what can be read in the respective tweets. I never understood this kind of “article” in the first place.

    I know it’s not my site, I don’t have to click it etc., but I know why I come back to this page so frequently. It’s not for content like this.

    All the best
    J.

    • Reply
      Wes Hall
      January 21, 2023 at 10:30 am

      A strong agreement here J. It’s easy to find outrage (rightly so I’m this case) on many other sites. I treasure 35MMC for the escape to read others experiences doing what we all enjoy; photography.

      • Reply
        davesurrey
        January 21, 2023 at 5:53 pm

        I agree too.

  • Reply
    Castelli Daniel
    January 21, 2023 at 2:32 pm

    It’s just not media companies; I see so much work by artists who lift photos & artwork from the ‘net and “create” new works. They never give credit to the creator, but they get offended if their piece is lifted. The only skill these visual robbers have is the ability to use a x-acto knife and rubber cement or master the cut & paste feature.

  • Reply
    Bast Hotep
    January 22, 2023 at 8:40 pm

    I love the fact that one of the authors involved is named Nick Craven.

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