A couple of weeks ago a college friend of hers was sightseeing in Prague (Czech Republic) and happened to drive past a huge advertisement on a store specialising in European food. To his surprise the advertisement featured Danielle and her family's Christmas card photo. He rang Danielle in America to tell her and she was shocked.
The owner of the store claims he just got the image off the internet and thought the photo was computer generated. Now he knows it's a personal family photo, he says he plans to remove the advertising.
It's clear how the image was found. Anyone can use Google image search to look for "happy family" and narrow the search down to "extra large images". Among the images displayed on the results page is a 1MB copy of the Smith's photo that Danielle had uploaded to Facebook.
We have to assume that any images we post are available to anyone. Anywhere. So before we post them we may have to imagine how the photo could be used. Danielle said next time she posts a photo on the internet, she's going to lower the resolution or add an electronic watermark to make it hard to reproduce. She said, "This story doesn't frighten me, but the potential frightens me."
Quite frankly she should be grateful it was a food store that used her photo. I have been to Prague and it is full of sex shops and has a large sex industry.
Something similar happened to me. Nothing to do with Prague.
Someone used my photo without my permission. And I was shattered. Simply because it wasn't my best photo and was designed purely to make the other party look way hotter. If I could catch the guy that did this I would sue but alas he is hard to pin down. I have tried. Believe me.
So beware bloggers, that's all I am saying.......lower resolutions, watermarks..... that should fix it. No-one will want your photos then and if they do, they certainly won't be able to blow them up to life size advertisements. And, if anyone has any tips on how to do watermarks on images can you let us know?
UPDATE: Just to show what people can do with your photos, CJW666 (Christopher Williams blog) sent me a different version of the above picture after he made it a little more friendly, lol. Next time Chris, err George, you can doctor all my pictures to remove drooping jowls, wrinkles and double chins...and make me look more like Kylie Minogue. You have to go visit Christopher's latest post here!