TNB Night Owl – Photo Contest

Vintage Pentax Program Plus 35mm SLR Camera, Made In Japan, Circa 1984. Photo by Joe Haupt.

Where do property rights begin?

Let’s present a hypothetical. A man owns a camera. He places the camera into a conspicuous public place where others are known to frequent. While the camera is out of his direct possession, someone comes along and takes photographs.

Who owns the photographs?

Now, let’s make it more complicated. The individual in question is front and center in the picture frame when the photos are taken; there are no doubts about their identity. Does that affect the ownership?

What about if the person who left the camera is still present in the general location? And if they are visible in the shot?

The question isn’t really hypothetical. This chain of events happened… and the photo in question was then declared the winner of an international photography contest, with significant prize money awarded. Do you believe the individual who took the picture deserves any portion of the cash?

Thankfully, it is exceedingly unlikely that the true photographer will demand any of the prize, because it was an octopus.

Best in Show at the 2020 Ocean Art Underwater Photo Competition went to a submission in the wide-angle category (click on the link to see it) by Gaetano Dario Gargiulo. He explains:

β€œOn the day of the photo, I remained in the tide pool as the tide was too low to venture outside of its boundaries. In one of the shallowest parts of the pool I noticed an octopus. I placed my camera near its den and the octopus started interacting with it. It came completely out of the den and to our amazement it started shooting pictures! My son (3 y.o. in the background) was very curious about the octopus.”

Congratulations to Mr. Gargiulo and to the selfie-happy mollusk.

Question of the night: Have you ever participated in competitions or contests alongside family members?

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About AlienMotives 1991 Articles
Ex-Navy Reactor Operator turned bookseller. Father of an amazing girl and husband to an amazing wife. Tired of willful political blindness, but never tired of politics. Hopeful for the future.