Wednesday June 10th 2015 (4 weeks ago)
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Image theft

Published: Wednesday June 10th 2015 (4 weeks ago)
Updated: Wednesday June 10th 2015, 6:46PMMore about: About | Photography | Pictures |
by Martin Joergensen

We pride ourselves on many and good images. A lot of other people also like our images... some a little too much, actually!

The Bird in Borrowed Feathers

I sometimes venture on a small image search on the web, and see if I can find some of our images on other sites. It usually takes about 30 seconds to find the first, and once I get started, I'm mostly overwhelmed by the number of copies of images from the Global FlyFisher I can find.

Illegal copies!
A very small number of sites have been allowed to copy content from our web site, usually in connection with a translation. They mostly write and ask kindly, and we grant permission to use and translate our articles on non-commercial sites, in newsletters, club magazines etc.
But only very, very rarely allow other sites to use our images, and still I can find hundreds of copies of our photographs spread all over the world – literally.
I remember a US salmon fly tyer handing me a business card at a show in New Jersey. I said thanks and put it in my wallet, and it wasn't before I returned home and went through the cards I'd been handed that I noticed that the image of a Black Argus fly he had on the card was one of mine! And the fly was tied by my good friend, Danish Kim Rasmussen. So much for advertizing your skills as a salmon fly tyer!

In the worst cases I write people and ask them to remove the photos. I rarely get any reactions at all. Sometimes the images disappear, but mostly nothing happens. I only remember once having received an excuse after which the webmaster kindly removed our pictures.
I have several times received angry replies from people obviously offended by my questioning their “right” to freely use images from the web and some even questioning my right to call them mine!

Image theft from Argentina

So in stead of contacting them in vain, I have decided to expose them here. If nothing else, then for my own satisfaction.

Most of our images are protected by a simple anti-theft system. It's nowhere near being perfect, but it keeps people from simply copying or saving images. We also add a watermark to images. Nothing that can't be circumvented, but simple enough to stop most bland copying.
It doesn't take much skill to copy a picture from the web, and I personally haven't seen a protection scheme that can't be broken. The thing is that simply showing the images on people's screens expose them to copying.
We have older articles where the images aren't protected at all and we have our wallpapers where the images have to be downloadable. That's the whole idea. But these images all have the GFF logo and the originator's name in the image files.
Well, it seems that the temptation is still too big for many, and the beautiful high rez wallpapers are spread far and wide as gallery entries, article illustrations, avatars and even as backgrounds for event posters and greeting cards!
Thank you Global FlyFisher for delivering such excellent photos!

My photo: 12 US$

Not much gratitude
Or rather: thank you GFF for being stupid enough to leave good quality images out in the open!
I do see places where the images are credited to us and a few places even have a link, but most have no mention of GFF and a surprising number of the images have been edited to remove all traces of the origin such as watermarks, logos or the photographer's name.
Quite a few even added their own names to cover up what they couldn't remove.
And they are of course places on pages that are clearly marked as copyrighted by the “owners” and in some cases even protected by different copy preventing systems!
Nice to see that people stand up for their rights! Too bad the content they so vigorously defend isn't theirs...

Well protected


No, not the movie with the blue, oversize Pocahontas types, but the images that people use as their mark in forums and on social networks.
A whole handful of guys with names such as Torrish24, Penfold, Black Rat, Steinfluen (The Stone Fly in Norwegian) and many more have found Steve Schweitzer's fantastic picture of Steve Violette's salmon fly on a couple of whiskey bottles worthy of representing them online. We're honored, of course, but Rat, Stone Fly and Torrish, you know what? It's not legal!
Lot of other of our images are used in that way, and none of the users have ever asked permission. A permission we would not have granted, so that might be why.

Selling England by the pound
OK, having your images copied seems close to unavoidable once they are on the web, and I can only find a small comfort in the fact that most image thefts from GFF are made by private individuals and non-commercial web sites, who gain nothing else than having a great picture on their web site, their forum profile or their business card.
I'm not forgiving them! No siree! They should know better. It just doesn't hurt that much, just annoys me.
What hurts is the pros stealing. People selling stuff using our images or selling products with our images on them.
That's a friggin' pain in the beep, and I wish I could do something about it!

No go!

What you can do
With our images? Not much, actually. You are welcome to use the wallpapers as intended: as a background on your computer screen. But that's it.
You can pin an image on Pinterest (we even have a link to do that) and you can like an image on Facebook, Tweet it or do similar things. The image will be shown as ours with a link back to us.
You can't use any image from GFF as your avatar, as a background for your event poster, as an image posted in your online gallery. No matter how much you attribute it to us, link to us and print that the copyright is ours. You can't!
You can ask for permission, and depending on the purpose we will sometimes grant such a permission. We have a weak spot for club newsletters and materials for non-commercial teaching, so don't be shy. Ask.
Commercial operations can ask too, but must expect to be asked to pay.

What can I do?
Not much actually. I can keep on protecting our images as I do, and just live with the fact that they get copied.
I can try to chase down the worst offenders, but it's often in vain.
I can watermark all our images thoroughly, but honestly don't want to do that. It's not difficult. Modern web technology can watermark each on the fly so that I don't have to edit every single file There's more than 20,000 images, so that's impossible anyway.
So for now I'll just moan and groan and hope that people have enough respect to at least ask for permission.

Danish Fly Festival 2015

Published: Friday January 23rd 2015 (5 months ago)
Updated: Friday January 23rd 2015, 6:43PMMore about: Danish fly festival | Shows |
by Martin Joergensen

The biennial fly show The Danish Fly Festival takes place this year in the weekend April 11th and 12th. I will be there. How about you?

I wouldn't miss a Danish Fly Festival for anything... almost. I have been attending the last many times and even had the chance to tied and do presentations a couple of times in the past. I have also bought a few thing in the many booths that have all kinds of temptations on display and of course enjoyed the show, the tyers, the casters and all the activities going on during the weekend.

Find more information and a still evolving program on the festival home page
Venue: KFUM-Hallerne, Peder Tofts Vej 21, 6000 Kolding, Denmark
Admission is usually very reasonable and parking is free.
Our earlier coverage of this show.
But my first and most important purpose for coming is to meet people. Fishing friends from home and abroad are attending in large numbers, and a trip through the busy halls inevitably results in several conversations with people I know - or who know me.

But in order to have a chance to meet as many as possible, I usually arrange a small get together for Global FlyFisher readers where we can get a chance to chat and put faces to names. We'll probably withdraw from the main hall to the cafeteria and have a coffee, beer or whatever is needed at that time.
This year this event will take place n the Saturday - April 11th at 14:00 (2 PM). We meet just inside the first hall by the entrance where a few steps lead down to the exhibition area. I will bring a banner to announce the spot and also be easily recognizable being in a wheelchair.

Should you miss the event, I will be at Federation of Fly Fishers Denmark's booth during most of both days, demonstrating how to shoot fly pictures, and you can most likely meet me there when I'm not roaming the floors together with thousands of other fly-anglers.

I will also be doing a presentation. The time for that hasn't been set yet.

Presentation: Do me a favor. Go fishing!
A presentation that will make you want to go fishing. Based on the somewhat sad situation of ending end up in a wheelchair due to multiple sclerosis, I will talk about my fishing before and after, show lots of pictures from fantastic fishing trips and look at my situation with a cheerful view back and a defiant, optimistic glance forward.

Workshop: Better pictures of your flies
Stop by the Federation of Fly Fishers Denmark's booth and see how to get the best pictures of your flies.
I will show how to get good pictures with both large SLR cameras, compact cameras and even with a cell phone.
How to arrange the fly, how to set up the camera, how to set lights and how to process the images afterward so they appear the best possible print or online.
You can bring your own best fly and get a picture take home. You can also bring your camera, and we can work together to see how it can be configured to take the best fly images.

I F***ing Love Fish Science!

Published: Friday August 29th 2014 (10 months ago)
Updated: Friday August 29th 2014, 7:54AMMore about: Coastal fishing | Denmark | Sea trout |
by Martin Joergensen

Scientific reports about fish and environment might not seem to be the most exciting to us anglers, but the work done by scientists is extremely important in keeping and eye on and improving our fishing waters.

As many of you know I fish for sea run brown trout – called seatrout here in our region. I live in the part of Denmark with the densest human population and probably the worst conditions for these fish – namely in the capital Copenhagen on the island Sealand (AKA Zealand).

Thanks to intense agriculture, large inhabited areas, colossal water consumption and cultivation of the landscape for farming, drainage, development and much else, the streams, which are ever so important to the seatrout, are few and far apart – and on top of that often very low in water.
The island has no mountains and very little elevation and the streams often have very little fall and require quite a lot of water to maintain a good bottom and water quality suitable for trout to spawn in.
While other parts of the country have larger streams and even rivers able to maintain very good salmon populations, many of our running waters can barely uphold a decent brown trout population and lag severely in good spawning grounds and sufficient water for the sea run fish.
I have known this for many years based on my own experience combined with knowledge from my years as a biology student at the University of Copenhagen.

But now I fortunately have the facts and numbers to support it.
I say fortunately, because facts and numbers are exactly what's needed to emphasize the problem and to call out to politicians and authorities to do something about it.
It's an established fact that recreational anglers – locals and tourists – are worth a lot of money. This has been concluded again and again by reports made all over the world, including one made here in Denmark a few years back. Fish caught on rods by anglers are worth a lot of money per kilo or pound. Anglers buy gear, food, gas and more, sleep in hotels, cabins and B&B's, rent boats, buy licenses and contribute on many levels to the local communities where they fish. They are at the same time “low pressure tourists”, who need few facilities, and actually prefer undisturbed nature and untouched environments.

It makes very good sense to have an attractive fishing and a nice environment. People travel to find these things and many are willing to pay a lot of money for a quality experience.
I just downloaded a newly released report on the sea trout streams here on Zealand. The report is called “The sea trout populations on Zealand, part 1” and tells the sad story of most of the streams here. The report is published by the organization Fishing Zealand, which was established a few years ago to help analyzing and improving fishing here.

The report is in Danish, so only a few GFF readers will be able to read it, and even fewer might actually want to, because most anglers honestly find such reports boring. Well, they might be, but they are also very important in the documentation of the current conditions and in forming a base for recommended actions to improve the situation.

The graph

This report is sad reading for me in particular, because the single worst region of the six covered in the report is the one were I fish the most. In the graph you see here the six regions are shown with their seatrout spawning population in percent of the potential, and in the bottom you sea my favorite fishing waters, Western Zealand, with only a fifth of the potential fish spawning due to lack of spawning streams, bad conditions in existing streams, blocked streams, lack of water, streams passing through lakes full of predators and all kinds of misery.
Only one area has a spawning population that matches the potential, and the other five are all lower than 50%, which is really unsatisfactory.

This is of course very sad, but the report is at the same time uplifting because it clearly shows and documents that there's a problem. It's the first part of two, and the second part will focus on possible solutions for this situation as well as on another part of the problems that the seatrout face: unsustainable fisheries management. It will hopefully focus on the commercial fishing for these trout, which are caught in nets by a few fishers – legal and illegal – who are very likely making surprisingly little money from ruining a potentially very rich recreational fishing. The second part will be out late 2015.

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