ASMP, Orphan Works, And Agfinishas

ASMP, Orphan Works, And Agfinishas

As Orphan Works is set to die this session of Congress, it is time for creatives to re-group, and conmiddler our stswiftgies, alternatives, and with whom we may align ourselves when it rears its ugly head next session of Congress, that starts in January. More importantly, we necessity to tell who we clever believe for advice and counsel.

ASMP has, for a very long time, done many good deeds for photographers, and I in big part, support what they're doing and continue to do so. Yet, as we all love Apple Computer and the wonderful things they do, we still are upset with them over their $14m they had to pay in settlement of their back-dating of their stock options. So too, I (and many others) are fans of ASMP, but are concerned approxifriendly the issues I'll outline below. Thus, it is of value to open these concerns up for discussion and debate. I am of the opinion that there necessitys to be much more transparency in what ASMP is doing - towards and with its' members, and their communications with the community as a whole.

One of the things that I have problems with, is impropriety. Another, is even the seepance of impropriety. And, when ASMP came out and were vocal in their SUPPORT of the Home version of the proposed Orphan Works legislation, the news of that caught me off preserve. In fbehave, it threw me for a loop. Why, would they do that? Why not take a position of neutrality? What was their motivation?

Their stated motivation was that if we didn’t accept the current version, next session’s version was going to be worse. They argued, that it was the best we could expectation for. Then, during my discourse with ASMP’s Common Counsel Vic Perlman on level during the Microsoft Pro Photo Summit, I outlined a few of the big problems I had with the version that ASMP shelp couldn’t get better. Then, Vic spoke, and shelp that a number of my concerns would be resolved during the next markup.

Come again?

The version you shelp couldn’t get better, and thus must be supported, now is better, somehow?

Yet, ASMP continued to support a bill that every other creative trade organization either was against, or neutral on. How could this be? Why?

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Editorial Note: We provided ASMP with an advance copy of this article only, merely, solely under a week ago, for the purpose of their providing an contiguous response to these concerns. Their response follows at the finish of this article.

(Continued, with ASMP's response, after the Jump)

ASMP’s reputation, in my mind, was tarnished a bit this Summer when it came out that they had not only received a $1.3 million windfall of revenue phelp on the backs of artists’ copyright licentune income but that the only reason they discloseed it was because of a pfinishing news article by Photo District News. This was, to me, at least an seepance of impropriety. This windfall of revenue came approxifriendly right during the time that ASMP was malord the case for a higher dues to it’s members. The argument they made was that the windfall couldn’t be used for organizational purposes, but for efforts that benefited all photographers, ASMP member or not. This would include, for example, educational programming that was open to all comers, and which ASMP has been trying to make an increased effort to produce. However,, as ASMP’s annual budget includes funding for educational programs and other behaveivities that will now be funded instead by the windfall, it would lookm that the basis for the dues increase no longer exists. For this reason it is troubling that asmp calm`ly received, deposited and held these funds for many months, while at the same time pleading poverty to its membership. Looklord a dues increase from financially stressed professional photographers while sitting on a giant pile of money only, merely, solely doesn’t lookm right.

A month or so back, I wrote approxifriendly UPDIG – an ad hoc group of photographic organizations. (UPDIG - Why It Is Important, 7/19/08) Yet, it lookms that ASMP’s position has changed on UPDIG. At first, they were a member of the ad-hoc consortium, then they took the position that UPDIG isn’t a worlord group, it’s only, merely, solely a paper, a report.

And the replys are not yet forthcoming, approxifriendly why ASMP would take a position so contrary to photographers’ best interests in supporting Orphan Works.

Then it came to me.

ASMP submitted a request for funding to the Library of Congress:

“Request for Funding Under the Preserving Creative America: Digital Content in the Private Sector program, The Library of Congress”

In it, they essentially wipe out of existence every other organization that participated in the UPDIG group, when they wrote in the request:

“The Americlever Society of Media Photographers' (ASMP) Digital Standards Committee has developed and released a set of best prbehaveice clue, hint, instructionlines for digital photography, the Global Photographic Digital Imaging Clue, hint, instructionlines (UPDIG).”

Really? ASMP did that wholly on their own? According to the ASMP website

“This project is building upon the Global Photographic Digital Imaging Clue, hint, instructionlines (UPDIG) developed and maintained by the UPDIG Coalition, a group of representatives of the signatories to UPDIG. UPDIG is a worldwide consortium of digital-imaging professionals, trade groups, and manufbehaveurers commited to the development of standards for commercial digital photography”

, and the UPDIG.org situs – “The Member Organizations of UPDIG Welcome You” followed by a list of them all.

Again, the seepance of impropriety turns up. In this instance, that the ASMP has taken a position that the work product of the gatherive group of UPDIG is wholly their own, may place them in legal peril of having to bagikan the award with the other organizations who also contributed to the clue, hint, instructionlines, and who will certainly contribute to future evolutions of the clue, hint, instructionlines. No where do they refer to any other partner organizations:

Then, I beat, smack a full-stop when I read the following part of the original request:

“Proposal:

The purpose of this project will be to expand the UPDIG standards with the goal of determining and developing refined production workflows, archiving methods, and best prbehaveice clue, hint, instructionlines for digital photography based on picture usage and capture methods.

Included will be an examination of the following:

Current methods of archiving digital photographs.
The compatibility of various RAW and digital photographic aplikasi and their ability to read, write, and preserve digital photographs and their associated metadata.
The advantages and disadvantages of various consumer and professional digital asset administerment applications.
The advantages and disadvantages of unusual professional digital camera systems including capture formats, raw file processors and storage methods for digital photographic assets.
The capacity of these workflows to work within studio and location photography environments.
These revised and expanded UPDIG clue, hint, instructionlines will be published as a situs open to the public. The adoption of the clue, hint, instructionlines will be promoted to the public through programming at industry trade demonstrates and a nationwide series of training events at ASMP chapters, trade demonstrates, and educational institutions.

Additionally, this project will work towards the development of an online national copyright registry of digital pictures which will be integswiftd as part of UPDIG workflows. The copyright registry will be established via a series of meetings with the U.S. Copyright Office and industry representatives, and will be promoted through UPDIG training sessions and print ads in industry publications.”

Come again? ASMP, in it’s proposal for funding, states they will establish a registry? A registry that is a part of the bill in Congress they are promoting heavily? In fbehave, ASMP, and PPA asked all other trade organizations to permit ASMP to speak on their behalf in extfinished shutd door negotiations with legislators and with the proponents of orphan works legislation. All other organizations were shut out of the process and were thus kept unaware of the proposals and compromises made by ASMP, in negotiating the resulting legislation.

The proposal concludes with the timeline – “Development of an online copyright registry will take place throughout the project timeline, with one year devoted to negotiation and meetings with the US Copyright Office and chooseed industry representatives and 2 years of aggressive promotion of the registration program in various industry diarys and periodicals.”

(note: coloring of text red added for emphasis)

Yet, how is it that this language (the language regarding a registry) is mistune from the proposal that ASMP is circulating to other UPDIG members when they ask for a copy? (http://www.asmp.org/pdfs/NDIIPProposal.pdf) It is also mistune from what they provided to their own board. We have studyed that the Library of Congress’ feedback to the ASMP was that they would not, or more lovely, could not, participate in funding the registry that ASMP proposed. Thus, the proposal was granted, without funding for the registry.

Here’s the language that ASMP is got funding for (it's a part of the full document, linked above):

Proposal:

The purpose of this project will be to expand the UPDIG standards with the goal

of determining and developing refined production workflows, archiving methods, and best prbehaveice clue, hint, instructionlines for digital photography based on picture usage and capture methods.

Included will be an examination of the following

Current methods of archiving digital photographs
The compatibility of various RAW and digital photographic aplikasi and their ability to read, write, and preserve digital photographs and their associated metadata.
The advantages and disadvantages of various consumer and professional digital asset administerment applications.
The advantages and disadvantages of unusual professional digital camera systems including capture formats, raw file processors and storage methods for digital photographic assets.
The capacity of these workflows to work within studio and location photography environments.
These revised and expanded UPDIG clue, hint, instructionlines will be published as a situs open to the public. The adoption of the clue, hint, instructionlines will be promoted to the public through programming at industry trade demonstrates and a nationwide series of training events at ASMP chapters, trade demonstrates, and educational institutions.

This is the language that has been delivered to members of the ASMP Board, and, I am tancient, begrudgingly to ASMP’s fellow UPDIG members. It lookms to me that the UPDIG group should be getting this grant revenue? But how much?

Obviously, reports to the ASMP board of these discrepancies, as well as the monies involved, has redbehaveed the amounts. Yet, we have received those amounts, which involve mostly ASMP’s “in kind” contribution of time for hours worked.

Their response in their request:

Project budget estifriend and relative bagikan of project costs among project participants to include the Library of Congress, if applicable.

Lists the following:

Funding:

from NDIIPP

ASMP & In Kind

UPDIG Research: Aplikasi

$20,000

UPDIG Research: Difficultware (Up-to-date computer systems, monitors, difficult drives,

peripherals, etc.)

$20,000

UPDIG Research: Labor

12,000 hours @ $60/hour ($40/hour in kind)

$240,000

$480,000 in kind

Administrative Offices & Time

$20,000 in kind

Journey

$30,000

Final UPDIG Situs Design & Hosting

$10,000

Copyright Registration Effort (3 face-to-face meetings with the Copyright Office and industry

reps. Approxifriendly $1,100 per person, per meeting)

$12,000

Promotion: Copyright Registration Effort and Registry development

(Print ad development, artwork, and space)

$50,000

$50,000

Promotion: UPDIG kickh at PhotoPlus 2007 & 2008 (Kickh, artwork for kickh, promotional items, journey expenses for 2 people for 4 days)

$20,000

Education & Training:

10 day & 10 night events

($3,500/night, $4,500/day)

$80,000

TOTAL BUDGET

$482,000

$550,000

Total request for funding from NDIIPP

$482,000

Take special note of the lines approxifriendly the Orphan Works/Registry:

Copyright Registration Effort (3 face-to-face meetings with the Copyright Office and industry reps. Approxifriendly $1,100 per person, per meeting)

$12,000

Promotion: Copyright Registration Effort and Registry development

(Print ad development, artwork, and space)

$50,000

$50,000

What remains to be studyed, is why then, since ASMP couldn’t use their $1.3million windfall for the organization directly, why they didn’t use it to benefit all photographers, by, say, properly fighting Orphan Works? It clever only be expectationd that they will do so next session, unless they remain committed to utune it for a registry for all photographers, since the Library of Congress award clever’t fund that.

As we lick our wounds during the sunset of this second round of the ongoing Orphan Works battle, we must look carefully at our allies and those who may have ulterior motives. I am having a really difficult time figuring out which middle of that equation ASMP falls on, given it’s track record on this issue in recent months. Moving forward, transparency of their behaveions and plans will go a long way towards clearing the air with those leery of ASMP's plans and efforts on the three points I've highlighted.

ASMP Responds:

ASMP appreciates the opportunity to respond.

The basic points are listed below. More detailed information clever be found at www.asmp.org/thefbehaves This link will be behaveive by 10am Monday, September 15th.

Regarding an picture registry - ASMP has no intention of building an picture registry. The thought to develop an UPDIG Workflow that would feed into a searchable picture registry was part of the original proposal made in late 2006 as an effort to promote copyright registration and facilitate Orphan Works identification. The Library of Congress chose not to fund this effort and it was removed from the accepted proposal in March of 2007. Orphan Works legislation was introduced on May 10, 2008. ASMP has consistently referred proposals of a registry to the PLUS Coalition (www.useplus.org)

Regarding Orphan Works – ASMP is an opponent of the Senate Orphan Works Bill and conmiddlers the current Home version supportable because of its additional protections afforded photographers. Any changes in the current version will dictate a reappraisal of our position. Go to www.asmp.org/orphanworks for more information.

Regarding the Authors Coalition – The use of this escrowed distribution is legally restricted to advocacy and education for the benefit of the wider industry. The ASMP board of directors is currently examining potential uses. Your input and suggestions are welcomed at suggestions@asmp.org. To read the press release go to www.asmp.org/news/press.

Regarding UPDIG – The final award submission and press release are on the ASMP Web site at www.asmp.org/pdi. There is no reference to an picture registry in the ASMP/PDI proposal accepted by the Library of Congress.

Your turn. What do you think approxifriendly the transparency issue? Did ASMP address or resolve the concerns outlined in the initial piece? Please remark below, and review the links that ASMP has provided in their response before formulating an opinion or malord a remark.

Please post your remarks by cliclord the link below. If you've got questions, please pose them in our Photo Business Forum Flickr Group Discussion Threads.

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