Originally Posted by eighty+
Oh aye. Not only that but they could print it out and sell it, with the buyer having no idea that it was not authorized (ie. rip off). That does happen to fine artists all the time.
In the early days of the internet, artists would put all their work online with good resolution to be seen, as an electronic portfolio as it were. And they did get taken.
Artists are free to do what they want and present how they will, of course. But I've noticed that many of the older artists don't have nearly as much art up as in the past, and they put watermarks in and try in all manner to prevent that form of theft. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.
It's probably the biggest can of worms an artist faces -- once it's left the artist's hands it gets really dodgy.
But look at what it's done to professional musicians, or software designers. At least with musicians so many had gotten into contracts where they sold the rights to their songs away, and thus it became a screwy situation where they had to pay royalties to perform their own work. So that's a different shade of the situation. At least with bands the internet helps them sidestep those funky deals and go more independent. But that doesn't mean they can get paid for the music out there once it's out.
But Peter Pinckney our own forum chappie, he got screwed royally by some outfit in a foreign country publishing his music without paying him. And there was little he could do to stop it. And believe me he tried.
As to painting professionally. . . I don't know. They can pick your bones. If you sell your services as an artist, that's a possible way to work it. But. . . it's a new business world.
Bartender, fix me a moon river. . .in a TIFFANY GLASS!!!!!!!