Should you watermark the images you post online? This is a question which has been extensively debated on photography forums all over the internet.
Essentially it boils down to whether you feel the need to protect your work. Protect it from unscrupulous rapscallions. Rapscallions who try to pass it off as their own, or use it without giving you any credit.
The other means by which you can protect your work is to only upload low resolution versions, typically with a long edge of no more than 1024 pixels.
I’ve been through various stages of paranoia on the subject, and have used both of the methods above.
However, as of today I shall do neither. From now on I am going to upload full resolution unwatermarked files. Indeed I have begun replacing some of my low res files on Flickr with better ones.
What has brought about this decision? Basically life is too short. Too short to be worrying that some tool on the internet is going to rip you off – and too short to export multiple versions for different uses.
Firstly, for aesthetic reasons I have never used a large intrusive watermark, so it would have been a moment’s work in Photoshop to remove it.
Secondly, large images make more impact. In the world of ultra high res screens we now inhabit, small files don’t cut it any longer.
I will still embed copyright info and contact details in the image metadata, so finding the image creator will be very easy for those who wish to know.
And for anyone who may wish to rip of MY image, in the vast sea of amazing photography that’s out there:
1. Thank you – I’m very flattered
2. What goes around comes around
3. Sleep well tonight
Now on with 2014 – January is more than half way though and you only have 341 days until Christmas!!