It was recently brought to my attention by one of the members that there was a photo submitted, in the current OR photo contest which incorporated what appears to be several plagiarized images. These images were digitally superimposed onto another image, specifically a reef background. There were at least 4 images which were recognized as belonging to others, including one of mine which was the first place winning photo in the last contest. I would just like to point out that images are protected under United States copyright right law. That law states, in no uncertain terms, that the author/creator of a work/content is the copyright owner and as the owner that material and the rights to that material are protected. The U.S. Copyright Act grants certain exclusive rights to the owner of a copyright. The reproduction right in particular is perhaps the most important right granted by the Copyright Act. This right, states that no one other than the copyright owner may make any reproductions or copies of the work, without the express permission of the copyright owner. It is not necessary that the entire original work be copied for an infringement of the reproduction right to occur.
The photo is the 6th entry entitled \"Hey! Where is the Mysis?\". It is actually a very creative photo but this is not in the spirit with which the contest was offered. In addition, it is a copyright infringement and as such is subject to the penalties of the copyright laws. The photo will most likely be disqualified from the contest. It would be recommended and greatly appreciated if the individual who submitted that photo would remove their entry as well as offer an apology to the people who\'s images they used without permission.