Getty Bristol Archives 2

Selling Public Domain, 2021

Max Pinckers

27 mei 2024 • 1 min

Getty Images charges a fee for the use of a 1953 image depicting Mau Mau detainees building a wall. Working together with the Bristol Archives in the case of this collection, Getty claims to sell services such as ‘image search tools’ and ‘research support’. These images are public domain, and in fact available for free, but as long as Getty does not charge the fee as a copyright claim, there is no legal obstacle to charging money for images to which they hold no copyright.

Getty Bristol Archives 1
Getty Bristol Archives 3

Elspeth Huxley, Mau Mau detainees build a dam, 1953, 1995/076/1/1/15/8.10, British Empire and Commonwealth Collection, Bristol Archives, UK public domain.

This is part our of series on 'documents' in collaboration with Read the introduction here.

Max Pinckers grew up in Indonesia, India, Australia and Singapore, and is currently based in Brussels, Belgium. His work explores the critical, technological, and ideological structures that surround the production and consumption of documentary images. Documentary photography, for Pinckers, involves more than the representation of an external reality: it's a speculative process that approaches reality and truth as plural, malleable notions open to articulation in different ways.

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