Everyone working in our industry, seasoned pro and novice alike, will benefit from the simpler processes created by the PLUS standards. And with easier accessibility, your clients are encouraged to commission and license more rights-managed art.
How PLUS will improve Rights Management
• Standardize license data
• Provide machine readable, worldwide standards for communicating an image license
• Create license reference codes that can be embedded in image headers and invisible watermarks on printed images
• Allow for better monitoring and policing of image distribution and use
• Allow customers to easily track image licenses and avoid unintentional infringement
• Discourage claims of innocent infringement
Using PLUS, all parties will be able to instantly determine the license associated with any digital file. No longer will you (or your clients) need to search through old job folders and databases just to find the license information associated with an image.
Universal Billing Codes
For the first time, you will have the option of using standardized billing codes when specifying media rights on estimates, bids, purchase orders, invoices, contracts and other job documents. Billing codes will match those approved and used by your clients, as they too are participating in PLUS.
This simple, automated, technologically up-to-date approach allows you to track all works and discourages the removal or alteration of the license information embedded in a file.
With major software developers backing PLUS, clients will be using it every day on their desktops, referring to the PLUS Glossary and Media Matrix while requesting estimates, invoices and such using the PLUS License Format. This built-in acceptance will be fortified by the fact that experts on the client side are helping create the standards that will appear in these programs.
The PLUS standards will significantly streamline and generally improve the re-licensing process too, encouraging customers to make this choice much more frequently, substantially increasing revenues in this area, while avoiding accidental infringement.
Understandably, image providers place a high importance on markets such as China and India. In China, intellectual property rights have been a continuing issue, even a barrier to commerce with this industry. PLUS brings an understanding of licensing terminology and standardized transactions to ad agencies, design firms, and other customers in China as well as other markets worldwide. While this understanding may not aid in enforcement issues, the acceptance and use of these standards by clients in China will have a significant impact on the successful penetration and profitable operation within that market. The PLUS standards will also serve to align customer, vendor and affiliate licensing practices in other markets worldwide.
DAM and Your Customers
In providing image-licensing standards, including a machine-readable license format, PLUS is the missing piece of the puzzle for truly effective digital asset management. Major DAM (Digital Asset Management) software developers have promised to incorporate the PLUS standards into their applications, allowing customers to better manage the licenses associated with image assets stored in their systems.
As a PLUS member using PLUS standards, you have the advantage of working hand-in-glove with the DAM systems used by corporate customers large and small.
PLUS is designed to allow you to spend less time on enforcement, and more time on licensing. Disagreements regarding the scope of a license will be practically non-existent, as all parties will use common definitions. However, in the event of an infringement, there will be a single standard, worldwide, for the definition of each media type and each term used in a license. You need only point to the PLUS Glossary. No gray areas. No ambiguity.
The vast majority of trade organizations representing photographers and illustrators have endorsed the development of the PLUS standards and are participating in the effort.
Promotes Customer Confidence
When customers can compare licensing details in a uniform manner, it suggests transparent & ethical industry-wide practices.
Facilitates Customer Relationships
A precise mutual understanding of the scope of each image license eliminates misunderstandings that could lead to potentially contentious, after-the-fact negotiations and customer ill will. Customers prefer the exceptional quality and exclusivity of Rights Managed imagery. As perceived liability decreases, and as licensing is simplified and standardized, RM sales increase.
Reaching The Next Generation
Of course, PLUS will provide students and emerging artists with a near instant understanding of licensing, and the ability to conduct transactions professionally, right out of the