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Photos from the 'Golden Era'


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#1 ratkinso

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 15:13

Hello all,

I have been fortunate enough to inherit a couple of boxes of prints/proofs taken in the pre-WWII years when M-B and A-U were strutting their stuff, which I would very much like to share with you all. However, before I post any images, I would just like to be advised by those here more experienced as to whether there is a copyright issue. About a third of the photos have the following legend rubber-stamped on the back: 'This photograph is Copyright of KODAK LTD., and if reproduced must be acknowledged as "Taken by G. C. MONKHOUSE on KODAK S.S. PAN FILM."'
To me, in my optimism, this means that they don't mind it being reproduced as long as the above acknowledgement is made with each image, but these were done a long time before the wondernet, so can I or not? And has the Monkhouse estate (if there is still such a thing) regained copyright of the images?
Also, although the vast majority of the photos appear to be very consistently professional from both composition and technical attributes, most of them are not so stamped - there is no other provenance and my aged aunt from whom they came had no idea how her husband had obtained them (he built and sprinted/climbed quite a well-known Shelsley Special, but that's another story, hopefully to be introduced soon).

I look forward to your authoritative opinions.

Cheers,
Richard

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#2 Vitesse2

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 15:59

Most - probably all - George Monkhouse images will still be in copyright, since he only died in 1993. His archive is administered I believe by the Spitzley Collection, whose complete archive is part of Motorgraphs.

http://www.motorgraphs.com/index.php

Very few British photographers worked on GP racing at that time and if the pictures are as professional as you suggest then if not Monkhouse's they may very well be by Robert Fellowes or Louis Klemantaski, both of whose work is also still in copyright.

My suggestion would be to post one or two, though (with a suitable disclaimer) - if they are by the real pros I'm sure we can probably identify the snappers concerned: just be prepared to remove them quickly if necessary!

Edited by Vitesse2, 24 November 2010 - 16:02.


#3 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 16:34

Aggree to the above suggestion. Copyrights can be a delicate subject , but no one got his head chopped of yet !

#4 bradbury west

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 19:45

An interesting situation, I suspect, and I always defend the right of copyrightholders. However, if they are marked Copyright to Kodak surely they must have been commissioned on the order of Kodak, and the photographer was simply in their employ, rather like if an employee designs an item in company time, the intellectual rights belong to the employer. Perhaps that is why Kodak specified how any repro credits should be worded, because it was theirs to specify and grant. So if you follow the specific instructions.........but it might be worth taking specialist advice if there are a lot of them, not to mention speaking to Kodak perhaps.
Roger Lund

#5 Vitesse2

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 19:49

George Monkhouse worked for Kodak, Roger!

#6 bradbury west

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 21:07

George Monkhouse worked for Kodak, Roger!

I know he was, Richard. That was the whole point of identifying Kodak as the copyright holder. There is a difference in whether the terms under which he took the shots were as their servant/agent/employee, or whether he was , presumably the case with other photographs in the Monkhouse archives where they may have been of his own creation/ownership, like Jenks, the owner of his work with, in Jenks' case, Motor Sport having, as I understand it, a single use of his work, presumably reflected in the price for the work. I always understood, rightly or wrongly, that the colour film etc which Monkhouse used was supplied by and and owned by Kodak.
I will be interesting to see to whom the other 2/3rds of the shots can be attributed. Either way, it will be a joy to have the opportunity to see any of them.
Roger Lund

#7 Vitesse2

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 22:06

It would be informative to know what the Monkhouse pictures show. If you read the interview with him in "Shooting Star" the early ones published in "Motoraces" were essentially 'hobby' pictures (although he was already supplying The Autocar) while the ones which appeared in "Motor Racing with Mercedes Benz" were more or less under commission to Daimler Benz. He doesn't mention any commissions from Kodak though.

I wonder if these prints might be freebies that he used to hand out at his talks and film shows?

#8 jj2728

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 22:12

I will be interesting to see to whom the other 2/3rds of the shots can be attributed. Either way, it will be a joy to have the opportunity to see any of them.
Roger Lund


Hear hear, I can only second that.

#9 Redneb

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Posted 24 November 2010 - 23:06

As someone who has worked in the media since the 70's, I can tell you that copyright message means, as bradbury west says, they were commissioned by Kodak and are available to publish so long as the photographer is acknowledged. They were probably taken as a promotional tool for Kodak film. Otherwise the copyright message would simply say "Copyright Kodak."

I've got a photo in front of me from the 1952 IOM TT which clearly states "Photograph supplied by Paul Popper Ltd, to whom the reproduction fee is to be paid and voucher copy sent" Pretty clear message there.

Edited by Redneb, 24 November 2010 - 23:06.


#10 ratkinso

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 16:44

Thank you for all your responses. I've had a look at the Motorgraphs site, and some of the prints I have are duplicates of the ones there, but there are many extra ones. I will start uploading them to a host site and get some links on here ASAP with suitable disclaimers.

Watch this thread!

Cheers,

Richard

#11 ratkinso

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 17:20

As per my original post, I have no wish to violate anyone's copyright or ownership of these images (which have not been stamped with a copyright message) so please let me know if you object.

My first does appear on Motorgraphs site without photographer's identity, but I have a similar shot taken either soon before or soon after which they do not display: Muller's C-type being worked on at the 1938 German GP:

same as Motorgraphs (although their's is rotated 90 right!):

removed as suggested

extra image:

Posted Image

More to come,

Cheers,

Richard

Edited by ratkinso, 25 November 2010 - 19:13.


#12 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 17:57

Well being in the Copyright corner again , I have to say that during my 5 years of agriculturing the net etc. I have found several as well as several times people claiming the rights of the same pictures ! So much to that!

#13 David McKinney

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 18:46

From Motorgraph's Terms and Conditions (on the website)

Use of any material contained on this website is strictly prohibited for use on any other Internet site

#14 ratkinso

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 19:12

From Motorgraph's Terms and Conditions (on the website)

Use of any material contained on this website is strictly prohibited for use on any other Internet site


Thank you for that - should have looked more thoroughly at conditions (should have looked - full stop). Although the source was not their site, but my print. Apologies to Motorgraph and will remove link. Will restrict to those not on their site in future. Do you think that will be OK?

Cheers,

Richard

#15 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 19:12

Those are definitely Monkhouse pictures, taken in practice: note the lack of urgency. There are others from the same sequence, shot from above the pits, in "Mercedes Benz Grand Prix Cars 1934-55".

Lovely shots though they are, I'm afraid my advice would be to remove them. Especially the first one!

#16 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 19:20

Apologies to Motorgraph and will remove link. Will restrict to those not on their site in future. Do you think that will be OK?

Cheers,

Richard

Well, up to a point. But they have many, many, many pictures which are not on their site. The problem will be that you may go to all the trouble of scanning them, only to have to remove them again. A PM to Doug Nye about this probably wouldn't go amiss and may save you a lot of time and grief.

#17 Doug Nye

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 22:36

Ratkinso - please check your PM inbox.

DCN

#18 elansprint72

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Posted 25 November 2010 - 23:08

When it comes to general copyright litigation- send for Ron Hickman.
When it comes to photograph copyright litigation, DCN would be top of my expert witness list.

Case rested, m'lud.

#19 Doug Nye

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Posted 26 November 2010 - 09:32

I wouldn't be so sure of that, Pete. These things are a pain but we have resolved several instances before real difficulties ensued for anyone involved.

DCN

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#20 ratkinso

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Posted 26 November 2010 - 19:19

Well, upon advice received, and pending communication with the Spitzleys, I have removed said images. A great shame, as there are some marvellous photos from 1935 through to 1938, at least , including Monaco, Donington, Nurburgring, Coppa Acerbo, etc and with some stunning portraits of the drivers and mechanics. Presumably, though, if they are all Monkhouse's work, then all the good stuff is available already.

Apologies for needlessly whetting appetites, but I hope to be posting photos that I know were taken by my uncle at pre-war Shelsley and speed trial meetings, and some images from immediately post WWII on the resumption of racing in GB.

For instance, from Sept 1937 Shelsley (would welcome identification!),

Posted Image

Should be more up soon,

Cheers,

Richard

#21 fnqvmuch

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Posted 26 November 2010 - 21:58

removed as suggested

Posted Image

Posted Image



such a relief to know that we won't have to see those images without paying their rightful owners; when they just copyright the colours black, white and sepia i will be happy.
have just been looking at another year's bumper crop of poorly written and edited coffee table books, aimed at interests like ours, remaindered in the mall.
we can be sure of many more to come. pleased also to report my regional library is now perfectly innocent of Chris Nixon, Automobile Year etc., etc ....
("Oh - it's good to be alive, in nineteen eighty-five!" 'Mad' Dan Eccles)

Edited by fnqvmuch, 26 November 2010 - 22:08.