Correspondence with George Steinmetz

Today, Gary brought up a very valid question about this post regarding copyright issues.

I know exactly what is like and have always done my best to give credit where credit is due.

Better late than never, I researched and wrote to the photographer George Steinmetz asking for permission for using this photo. Below is the correspondence.

My mail:

Hello George,

I recently received on of your photographs via a forward, which was
extremely interesting and so posted it on my blog at

It has been pointed out to me that there could be copyright issues for the
same and hence am writing to you. I was not aware of the true source of the
photo when posting it, but have now (after a good deal of searching) found
out that it was called “Larger than life” and is available as a wallpaper
on NGC ( )

I am writing to you to ask for permission of displaying that photo on your
site. I have already added a link to your site


However, if you think it is not appropriate and you would like me to remove
the photo from your site, I will do so immediately. I really hope this
won’t be the case.

Thanks and regards,
Ajay D’Souza

To this his reply:


It’s okay with me as long as you give me and NGS the © reference. A
link to my site is nice,



I have already provided a link to both George’s and NGS websites. All copyrights belong to them.

The photo was only posted to highlight the expertise of the photographer and it’s pecularity.

Share this post with your friends!


  1. […] Disclaimer: This photo is the sole property of National Geographic. I received this via a forward and am not aware of who the photographer is have now researched on it. The photographer is George Steinmetz and the image is called Larger than Life. While I couldn’t find an exact page, it is available as a wallpaper on the NGC Site. I have written to him and am awaiting his reply have received his reply. I have no intentions of encroaching any copyrights. If you are the photographer and think that I shouldn’t be posting this please let me know if you want me to remove it or post a link to your site. Thanks to Gary for raising this valid point. Why search for this post when you can bookmark it?                                                    […]

  2. Ajay:

    All due credit and respect to you, sir. More people than not might have just thought the worse of me for bringing something like this up. But it is always harder for someone to stand up and say “Ya know, you might be right, let me see what I can do to fix that.” So to that, “Cheers!” – Perhaps we should hold you up for an example to most of the world’s political leaders.

    & just as a BTW & FYI & FWIW: Whenever someone asks to use my pic in a blog, I usually say fine, just include a credit and link. The same photo and the same use by the same person, but without asking first, generally makes for a completely different type of response.

    Again, kudos for your pro-active response.

    Finally for Donald: The odd thing is that these days, lots of things come with licenses or restrictions, some more obvious than others – like software. I’m sure you wouldn’t go to the local store to buy a poster for your wall, take a snapshot of it with your own camera, and then use that pic for promoting your business, right? Same basics usually apply, NGS grants a right for personal wallpaper use, but that generally exludes the rights for you to make further use or distribution.

    All the best,

  3. Thanks Gary.

    I believe in “do unto others as you would want them to do unto you”.

    I wouldn’t want someone using my stuff without credit, same way I wouldn’t do it to them.

    I only reason I posted that photo without initial permission was because I didn’t know the photographer. And I definitely didn’t expect the post to get famous!

  4. […] P.S. Edit 3/22/06 5:58pm : per a very reasonable request; I’m adding this postscript to say that the person who made the post I refer to in this topic has responded graciously, and made a greater effort to ammend the situation than many others would have done in similar circumstances. I’ve applauded his responsiveness on my site and his within the comments area. Comment on this post: Copyright info for using or linking to the pictures. Subscribe to feeds for Enlightened Images: Explore posts in the same categories: Rants and Raves […]

  5. [1] The name of the photographer is available on the photo.
    [2] A google search with that name gabe 650,000 links.
    [3] On the first page of the google result I found all the information needed about the photographer.


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