Is my employer violating my copyrighted material?

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Is my employer violating my copyrighted material?

I’m a salaried catering manager for a national corporate food service company. Roughly a month ago I submitted via email to my direct supervisor some pictures of our fare that I had taken with my own camera and edited on my own computer. I received no response to said email. I assumed they were overlooked or otherwise discarded. Then, 3 days ago, I discovered all of these photos I had sent in/on an advertisement for our new catering menu. Would they not need to provide me with some form of compensation because they are using my copyrighted material? Since I’m a salaried employee of the company, would my argument against them using my work be null and void?

Asked on December 17, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If you sent them in to be used by your employer and/or as part of your job, you are not owed any additional compensation. Any photographs you take, edit, create, modify, etc. for your employer belong to the employer: copyright in creative works made for work always belong to the employer, not the employee (just as anything done by a freelance/contractor/vendor for pay or as part of their project also belongs, as works made for hire, for the person or business paying them). 


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