Photographer Ami Vitale is Safeguarding the Truth in Photojournalism

It’s terrible how photographs are often misused without proper permission or payment. In this instance a Nigerian creative director discovered photographer Ami Vitale‘s photo on The Alexia Foundation website. By adding a tear and hashtag one girl in a remote village of Guinea-Bissau instantly became a false victim of the Boko Haram kidnapping #BringBackOurGirls campaign.

After doing research on the internet Ami was able to locate where the tweet originated and who pushed it forward. The BBC was one of the major players who fought with Ami about “fair use” but eventually took the image down.

It is a shame to have any images misused at the expense of the subject and photographer. If you didn’t already know there is a Digital Millennium Copyright which heightens the penalties for copyright infringement on the internet.

Please read more from Ami’s interview with Ochre Magazine as a guide to protecting your own original work.

Ami Vitale

The Alexia Foundation