Stock library Alamy has come under fire from its own contributors after promoting the AA Landscape Photographer of the Year in its corporate blog.
The competition was immediately attacked by Alamy contributors for rights-grabbing clauses which means that be entering, the photographer grants “Take a View and its supporting partners a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free license to reproduce, enlarge, publish or exhibit, on any media, the images for any purpose connected with the competition….[such as]...in the Take a view book…on the websites of sponsors and supporters…[and] on any merchandise“ without paying the copyright holder an appropriate fee.
While this is far from being the worst rights-grab seen in these parts, and it is reasonable that competition organisers should be able to use winning entries to publicise this and future years’ competitions, the wording grants the organisers and ‘partner companies’ a very broad licence to exploit a potentially huge collection of entries “for any purpose in connection with the competition”. It is also unclear why this applies to “all entries” as opposed to just “all winning entries”.
In addition to this, the competition charges entrants a fee of between £1.33 and £7 for each entry, depending how many entries are made. There is a top prize of £10,000, with total prize money totalling £20,000.
One Alamy contributor commenting on the blog post said “You fill their image library for free and take sales away from Alamy and working photographers. We pay to take the photo, we pay to enter the photo and they get the rights to the photo on the faint chance of a lottery win? “
“Alamy should be recommending we boycott such competitions not supporting them.”