APPLE HAS BACKTRACKED on the widely-criticised terms of a photography competition looking to highlight both the work of amateur photographers, and - entirely coincidently - the fidelity of the iPhone Xs and XR camera.
Previously, winners of the ‘Shot on iPhone' competition would be paid in ‘exposure', rather than the more widely-accepted currency of ‘money'. That exposure would come in the form of iPhone adverts in cities around the world, hopefully generating Apple more of the money it was originally holding back from the artists.
But Apple has now relented. Where previously the terms and conditions of the contest read stated that the "prize has no cash value", it now clearly states that "winners will receive a licensing fee for use on billboards and other Apple marketing channels." The change is visible in the screenshot below, captured by The Verge:
After the initial outcry, Apple confirmed to The Verge that it had updated the terms and conditions, as well as adding the following line to the original post announcing the contest: "Apple believes strongly that artists should be compensated for their work. Photographers who shoot the final 10 winning photos will receive a licensing fee for use of such photos on billboards and other Apple marketing channels."
That's a huge improvement. Anybody trying to make it as a photographer, graphic artist or writer will be extremely familiar with people asking if they'll do work paid purely in exposure. There's a whole Twitter account highlighting the most egregious examples. It's just a shame that Apple - a company that's worth $730 billion - would seemingly have the brass neck to be amongst them.
Whether or not it was deliberate or a genuine mistake, the winners will get something for their trouble now. Of course, Apple's accountants could tot up the licensing fee as coming to a 12-pack of 7-Up and a Curly Wurly, but you'd hope that the company would dig a little deeper - for the PR fallout, if nothing else. µ
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