Bert P. Krages II
Attorney at Law | For more information, visit www.krages.com
As discussed on the page about copyright registration, registering works with the U.S. Copyright Office provides significant advantages when seeking redress against infringers. Registration of groups of photographs is neither expensive nor difficult and can be done quickly and with little effort if steps are taken to incorporate copyright issues into the normal work flow of processing images. Photoshop’s actions function can be used to expedite the process of creating the deposit of images that is required when you submit your registration application and can also enhance the level of copyright protection by embedding a copyright notice into the metadata of your image files.
The first action described below saves the file in the current directory, prepares a low-resolution copy, stores the low-resolution copy in a separate designated folder, and then closes the image file. The low-resolution images can then be copied from the folder onto a CD or DVD for inclusion with the application. If you want, you can modify this action to create actions that copy the low-resolution files to different destination folders for published and unpublished images.
The second action embeds a copyright notice and related information for unpublished images into the IPTC space of a digital image file. IPTC is an internationally recognized protocol that enables text information to be embedded in the image for future reference. Using this action will also cause Photoshop to display a copyright symbol on the title bar of images that are opened in Photoshop. If you want, you can modify this action so that it can be used for published images.
Each time you are done processing an image in Photoshop, play the action and Photoshop will automatically save the file into its current directory and then create and store a low- resolution copy into the Copyright Dump folder. When you are ready to submit the registration application to the U.S. Copyright Office, you can copy the entire Copyright Dump folder onto a CD or DVD to prepare the required deposit. Afterwards, you should copy the files to another CD or DVD for your records and delete all the images from the folder. Alternatively, if you want to keep the record of the registered images on your hard drive, you can rename the Copyright Dump directory to correspond to the title used on the registration application (e.g., Images, October to December 2006) and create a new folder called “Copyright Dump.”
Note: You can create a separate action to be used for published images. To do this, omit the phrase “unpublished work” in step 7 and insert the year of first publication.
Each time you are finished with processing an image in Photoshop, play the action and Photoshop will automatically insert the textual information into the IPTC space.