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How can I protect my photography work while selling it online without compromising on copyright control when using platforms that seem to favor the buyers over the sellers?

Copyright law states that the moment you create a photograph, you own the copyright, and it's yours to license or sell as you see fit.

The "fair use" doctrine allows others to use your work without permission, but only for specific purposes like criticism, commentary, news reporting, teaching, or research.

Watermarking your images can deter theft, but it's not foolproof, and some thieves may remove or manipulate the watermark.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) makes it illegal to remove or alter copyright management information, including watermarks.

When selling your photos online, it's essential to understand the licensing options and agreements on each platform to ensure you retain control over your work.

Royalty-free licenses, often used on stock photo websites, grant the buyer unlimited use of your image without paying further royalties.

Rights-managed licenses, typically used for high-end commercial photography, grant the buyer limited use of your image, and you can negotiate royalties for each use.

Some platforms, like Stocksy, offer a 50-75% royalty on standard and extended licenses, respectively, giving photographers more control over their work.

Building an online presence, including a website and social media, helps establish your brand and makes it easier to sell your photography online.

Establishing a niche, like event or wedding photography, helps you stand out in a crowded market and attract specific clients.

Choosing the right platforms to sell your photos, such as Shutterstock or Getty Images, can expand your reach and increase sales.

Direct sales, through your own website or platforms like SmugMug, allow you to retain 100% of your profits and have complete control over your work.

Fine Art America, a print-on-demand company, allows artists to upload their work and set their own profit margins, handling printing and shipping.

Adobe Stock integrates with Creative Cloud, making it easy to list and sell your photos and videos on the platform.

Building an elegant and modern gallery website, like PicTime, can showcase your work and attract potential clients, especially for event and wedding photographers.

Create photorealistic images of your products in any environment without expensive photo shoots! (Get started for free)