INDABA Newsletter | September 2012

Networking forum

Thank you very much to Lawyers for Human Rights for hosting the club’s networking forum in August. It was a most enjoyable and interesting evening!

Our next networking forum will be hosted by Proudly South African at 18:00 for 18:30 on Thursday,
27 September 2012 at Orange Restaurant, Court Classique Hotel, cnr Francis Baard (previously Schoeman) and Beckett Street, Arcadia.

Members should please check their e-mails and the press club’s Facebook page for further announcements.

We look forward to seeing you there!

New chairperson for National Press Club

The National Press Club has a new chairperson, Antoinette Slabbert, senior in-depth journalist with Sake 24. Slabbert has been the club’s deputy chairperson and her election follows the resignation of Yusuf Abramjee.

When Abramjee was re-elected as chairperson earlier this year, he indicated then he would only take up the position for a further few months because of his commitments with LeadSA, Crime Line and Safact.

Abramjee says: “The press club has always been and will always be close to my heart. I have thoroughly enjoyed my terms of office over the years. We have to grow and develop new leaders and I am pleased there are many able and willing individuals in the executive who can take over.

“Keep up the good work and please keep the flag of the National Press Club flying high. The club has always played a leading role and it must continue doing so. I hope I leave behind some legacy and I appeal to the executive committee to continue being the voice for the media.”

The executive committee expressed their gratitude for Abramjee’s outstanding leadership of the club and hoped that as a member he would continue his support.

Jos Charle, executive editor at the Pretoria News, accepted the position of deputy chairperson.

The North-West University has congratulated Slabbert on her election. “The North-West University has over the last few years built up a strong relationship with the organisation, and we want to wish you luck for the enormous task that lies ahead. We are looking forward to dealing with you,” said Louis Jacobs, Corporate Communications Director at the university.

Copyright photographs critical to protect work

Photo artists should be very aware of their intellectual property rights, says Mariette du Plessis, a partner in the trademarks department at Adams & Adams.

“Many young photographers do not know when they do and do not own the copyright in their photographs and may allow third parties to make copies of their photographs without their permission and, more importantly, without receiving the required financial compensation.”

According to du Plessis, the Copyright Act makes provision for the protection of specific creative and intellectual expressions. One category is called “artistic works” and photographs fall into this group. For a photograph to enjoy copyright protection, it must be original and the result of the photographer’s own skills and efforts. Usually, the person who creates the artistic work, ie the photographer, will be the owner of the copyright. However, there are specific exceptions to this rule.

“If a photographer is employed by a magazine or newspaper and takes a photograph during the course of the scope of his/her employment to be published in the magazine or newspaper, the employer will be the owner, but only in so far it relates to the copyright in the photograph as published in the magazine or newspaper. The photographer will be the owner of the copyright of the balance of the copyright.

“Another exception is when a client commissions a photographer to take a photo and pays him money, then the client will be the owner. Lastly, if a photographer is employed under a contract of service or apprenticeship and takes a photo during the course of his employment, the employer will be the owner of the copyright.”

It is very important to know that any of these exceptions can be changed by an agreement between the photographer and the magazine/newspaper, or the client, or the employer. What is very important is that the photographer must make it clear upfront that he wants to retain the copyright in the photographs. Ideally, it should be incorporated in the photographer’s agreement with any employers or clients (where possible).

It is always important to mark your photographs to the effect that you own the copyright in them e.g. �2012 Eunice Driver, to alert customers and the public that you own the copyright and that they cannot be copied or used, without your permission.

Photographers should also be careful about how they display their portfolio on their websites. Ensure that you use watermarks, again to prevent unauthorised ‘copying and pasting’ by the public. Refer to your copyright prominently on your website. Indicate clearly that the public can contact you for licenses, or authorised copies, but that you will not tolerate unauthorised reproductions.

“Young creatives are in effect promoting and selling their creativity. In today’s digital world, extra precautions should be taken to protect their intellectual property,” says Du Plessis.

Club news

Members are reminded to diarise the annual Percy Qoboza memorial lecture, which will take place on Friday, 19 October 2012. Hosted by the National Press Club and the UNISA Department of Communication Science, the lecture commemorates Black Wednesday of 1977. Invitations will go out soon.

Members are reminded about happy hour at the press club bar emBARgo, every Friday from 17:00 to 19:00. The bar is in the cellar of the Orange Restaurant in the Court Classique Hotel, corner of Beckett and Frances Baard (previously Schoeman) Streets, Arcadia.

New members

The National Press Club welcomes the following new members and hopes to see them at club events soon:

Mthunzikazi Mbungwana – Road Traffic Infringement Agency, William Baloyi – Arms Procurement Commission, Hulisani Nemaxwi – Siemens, Nomzamo Petje – Public Investment Corporation, Justice Mohale – Rand Water, Lebogang Ramaboea – Ad Astra Magazine, Wendy Jasson da Costa – The Mercury, Sanki Lerefolo – Department of Education, Tendani Sibuyi – e-TV, Refilwe Sedumedi – student.


Please send any news, suggestions or information for this newsletter to Martin van Niekerk at the secretariat on, 082 257 0305. Website | Facebook | Twitter