Getty Images “Loans” images to Cafe Press with licensing them

Photographer Remi Thornton recently terminated his contract with Getty after finding out that the agency was allowing online retailer CafePress to use his images on potential merchandise without paying an up-front licensing fee.

In fact, according to Thornton, CafePress has an exclusive agreement with Getty, which allows them use any of the agency’s Royalty Free stock to populate their store, while only paying the photographer if the merchandise featuring their image actually sells.

Naturally there are plenty of artists that don’t like this, and there may be another exodus from Getty Images, as once again they are out to screw anyone in sight, artists, customers, they don’t care.

The images they “loan” to cafe press are all images they get from flickr contributors, which are mostly amateur photographers who are mostly happy to simply have their images appear for sale..


  1. It would be interesting to read Getty’s contract with photographers. Because if the contract signed by photographers doesn’t Give getty permission to do this they might be able to sue Getty. I wonder if they can sue CafePress?

    Also, I hate to say class action but if this isn’t in the class action and Getty is making money on their agreement with Cafe Press this actually might be a class action suit where the photographers could sue Getty. (IANL).

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