Simply put, Ranger photographers on assignment cannot promise copies of photos from an assignment.
A photojournalist on Ranger business shares the copyright with the news organization.
Like most newspapers, The Ranger protects information it works hard to capture.
Images tell a story as powerfully — if not more so — as the copy it accompanies.
Giving away photos before The Ranger publishes them is like giving a classmate an important essay before it is turned in for class.
What’s to keep anyone from claiming images as their own on Facebook or websites?
Such practices invite compromise and conflict of interest.
There is one exception.
After photos are published, a copy can be requested through the journalism program.
The nature of the photo and its intended purpose determines the decision to release it.
Our photos cannot be used commercially, in political campaign literature or signage.
Remember, we might decide to release a copy of an image for one-time use, but the copyright remains with the photographer and The Ranger. Images cannot be reproduced without credit unless The Ranger has contracted to release those rights.
This is the norm in newsrooms across the country.
Photojournalists work long hours so they can visually cover the news for the public.
In this age of quick Internet downloads, the public needs to understand that photographers deserve credit and compensation for their work just the way musical artists and film producers have fought to protect the rights to their creations.
Equally important are limits on manipulation. News photos must be used as is.
The complete rules governing The Ranger’s copyright on photos is online at TheRanger.org under the Contact Us link, or visit the newsroom in Room 212 of Loftin Student Center or call 210-486-1773.