Before we get to the topics for today, I actually just want to chat a bit with Connor about the most recent subjects we’ve shot recently. So connor, what have you been up to lately?[Connor] I have been shooting quite a bit recently and been a bit all over the board. As far as this week is concerned, I have shot a fitness session, an asphalt convention, documented a board meeting, and this weekend I will be shooting a 5 k and outdoor activities associated with that. This upcoming week i am super excited to be able to shoot some historic photos in a museum that need some restoration. They will be a bit of a challenge because I can’t simply scan them. They have to remain in their glass display cases, but the museum wants them digitized and restored for them to be able to use the images on some merchandise. [Brent] For me, I actually did an example in class about shooting glass. It’s a really cool assignment and it teaches the students how to really control the light in the studio. It’s also very basic. The main goal of the assignment is to eliminate the specular highlights. That is, the direct reflection that happens when the light directly hits the glass object. I also did some pouring water out of a pitcher. It was a lot of fun and the students get a kick out of this assignment too.
Canon RAISE[Brent] I wanted to talk about this Canon RAISE image sharing platform that’s out now. Have you heard much about this, Connor?
[Connor] No not in particular, but after doing a bit of research it is an intriguing platform.
I’ve got a few quotes from Canon about this new system. They say it’s intended to “help photographers streamline their workflow and continually improve their craft”
They also claim that “This new platform utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to help photographers organize and categorize their photos through auto-tagging.”
With that, when your photos are uploaded the system will automatically apply tags to your images to help in organization. You’ll also get tags relating to compositional items, style, emotion and color. This sounds somewhat interesting. What do you think, Connor?
It seems to me that they are also looking to build a community somewhat like Flikr where photographers go to share their images.
In their YouTube video, link in show notes, they say about photographers “we want to capture and share great images, not file them.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SBB9KFcc84&feature=youtu.be
So the bottom line is, this is a platform for photographers to share their images, but, like pretty much everything that’s free, there’s a catch. At least that’s how I would characterize it.
First off, they are using it to train their AI system. So while they are offering something of value to the photographers, whatever they plan to do with this AI stuff… well, I don’t know. In once sense I can see people not caring, but I know there’s a lot of folks out there that are saying NO WAY.
Also, you must be residing in the 50 US states or D.C. to participate. Something like this just makes me think, why are they restricting it? There’s obviously some legal issues going on here that makes them want to keep things simpler by not offering this to people who live elsewhere. Conspiracy theorists are probably already going crazy with the AI related stuff, but now it’s limited to folks in the US only?
Also, I commented on this on my Latitude podcast several weeks ago, but there’s a bit of clarification in their user terms. That is, under #7 of their terms of service, the license granted to Canon is covered. In that they say right up front that you own your image. So that should make us happy. But they also say “By uploading an image to the Platform, you grant Canon and its designees the right to include the image on the Platform for the purposes of making your Content available for viewing, training the Platform (to support a trainable dataset used in an artificial intelligence engine currently being developed by Canon) or other related matters.”
Connor, you brought this to my attention, tell us a bit about it.
Internal memory 32GB can add another 32GB card, not a whole lot
All controls seem to overlay on screen.
Panasonic M4/3 sensor, 16MP
Canon EF lens
You can put your phone SIM card in the device to directly upload images to your favorite sites.
Qualcomm 8-core processor. Ships with Android 7.1
Shoots 4K video at 30 fps
5” multi touch display with 1080p resolution
Includes stereo mic, GPS, 3.5mm headphone jack, dual LED flashes.[brent’s thoughts] It’s a great start. I actually love the irregular camera technology thinking on display here. It’s great for a “first” model but I’d want more memory and hopefully an APSC sensor in the near future. If you’re going to put such a large lens on it, give us a larger sensor. Additionally, Panasonic doesn’t do phase detect AF, so the only AF on this camera will be contrast based which will be a touch slower to operate. Though being able to swap out my SIM card and plug it into this camera is brilliant. I love that and I would actually do that as needed.
And in true cellphone fashion, it has a rear facing camera (pointing at the photographer) that is 8MP. Not sure why I’d want that, but it’s there.[connor’s thoughts] This camera does not seem to be trying to target the still photography market, it seems more directed towards video shooters, any of whom have no issues with micro 4/3rds. I can admit that the ef mount seems a bit off considering the sensor size, but I am still very much intrigued by this thing. It is taking a route I would not necessarily have expected camera technology to go, but is really using the technology from both worlds in an interesting way. I agree that a maximum of 64 GB between internal and SD card storage is a bit on the low end, especially for 4k video work, but I think there is a ton of potential in this thing, and for the price, it seems pretty awesome.
And it’s that “other related matters that gives me pause. But, this is also the first terms of service I’ve actually read all the way through, so… there’s that. I honestly don’t have much to compare it to.
And there’s more…
In their “Community Guidelines” there’s this, “Images of residents of Illinois, Texas or Washington are not permitted on the Platform and may be taken down.”
Now, I don’t take this to mean that I, as a WA state resident, won’t be able to join the community, but if I put a photo of my wife on there they may take it down. So I looked further into this.
So I found this article from insideprivacy.com and it explains why. And I’ll try to be brief here. Also, the link is in the show notes for this episode.
In short, WA, TX and IL are the only three states to enact laws regulating how businesses use biometric information. However, the WA law does not provide the private right of legal action. Basically, if I didn’t like what they were doing, I can’t sue under WA law, but my state attorney general can.
In short, these laws are dealing with biometric identifiers such as “fingerprints, voiceprints, eye retinas, irises, or other unique biological patterns or characteristics that is used to identify a specific individual.”
But the WA law specifically excludes digital photography, video or audio identifiers but the Illinois law does allow for those things. So essentially, it seems that Canon is just being overly cautious here.
Also interesting to note is the idea of identifying a specific individual. When I’m licensing an image clients don’t want anyone that’s recognizable, so faces must be hidden or obscured to a point where it’s not easy to identify them. But I wonder if Canon is more specifically concerned if we tag people’s names and ask that it recognize all the people in our collection. And if I tag someone in my collection, will it use that to identify the same person in Connor’s collection of images? Add geotagging to the image and I can see a whole mess of privacy issues cropping up and that’s probably why Canon wants to have the easy ability to delete these images as they see fit.
Plus, it seems that other states will enact similar laws and Canon probably wants to get this system trained before they can no longer do this without compensating the photographers or the models in these images.
Connor: Fotodiox Pro Lens Mount Adapter, Mamiya 645/M645 Lens to Canon EOS
Brent: Color Gel kit, 10×12” size: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/292682-REG/LEE_Filters_LOCP_Quick_Location_Lighting_Filter.html