22 May 2009 - – THIEVES!

Can you spot the difference?

I found a few of my images on ‘hometown hotties’ on the maxim website.   They published my work without getting a photographers release even though my © was clearly visible on the bottom of the image.  Notice how the ‘maxim’ image was enlarged to crop out my logo.

Here was my 2nd email to

My images are of Kinga from Vancouver.   All images i provide to clients have a © logo on the bottom with my name.  I have provided work to magazines (including Stuff online)  for years and it is quite standard to get a photographers release for publication.  I am just a little upset that my logo has been removed and a maxxim logo put on my images that are yet to be released into the US.    As Kinga is a client and i do not want to remove her from the competition,    I would be happy to see my logo/credit digitized onto these images.    ‘ © 2009 BWP.CA ‘

This was the response:

We require all Hometown Hotties entrants to get the photographer’s permission to use photos by signing a Copyright Release form. By Kinga submitting the photos without a form, we were led to believe that she owned the rights to the images. I’m very sorry that your photos were used, and name removed without your permission.

I’ve attached our Copyright Release form for you. Since Kinga is currently in a voting week and hasn’t yet moved on in the contest, if you’re unable to sign the release form I’ll be forced to remove her from the contest. I hope – as I’m sure you do – that I don’t have to remove her. Thanks for helping us – and Kinga – out with this. Sorry again for all the trouble.

Melissa Ward
Assistant Editor, Maxim Digital
1040 Avenue of the Americas, 22nd Floor
New York, NY 10018

How casual. . .sign this little release giving them full usage, resale, cell phone uploads, manipulation, poster and cd reproduction oh, and the big clincher. . renouncing all moral rights and association that I created this image.   I have alot of strong words for that!!!!

I just confirmed with a lawyer that the burdern or proving ownership fully falls on Maxim and this ‘led to believe’ crap is just that.  It’s usually pretty easy to differentiate professional images from snapshots (especially when they are clearly marked!!).  Now how many other photographers have had their work stolen in the same fashion?   I just have to rant how pissed off i am when a company such as this with all the financial means has to ‘steal’ work and especially remove credit.

So,  if anyone sees these images out there with the maxim logo,  I will be very appreciative if you could let me know. . . stay tuned!

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