Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Amazing, Affordable, Professional Digital Wedding Photography (Northern California)


When everything else fades away, all that remains are the photographs.



Incredible, affordable professional wedding photography by Cory Trese.


Would you like to discuss your wedding plans? Interested in a custom package? -- e-mail 'cory.trese@gmail.com' or call us at 530-753-2541. We still have dates open in 2009!











I photograph your wedding personally. I do not send anyone in my place.

To ensure your precious moments last forever, all of my wedding packages include all of the negatives,

originals and digital files at no extra charge
. In most cases I have the DVD of originals shipped to you within a few days of the event.

I will assign printing and enlargement rights to you so you can order prints from your vendor of choice (WalMart even!)

Want a la carte professional prints? I make my preferred pricing at a professional printing lab available. You pay only $8 for an 8"x10" from one of the best printers in the United States, shipped directly from the printer to your door.

Looking for premium quality wedding photography at affordable prices? E-mail 'cory.trese@gmail.com' give "Cory" a call at 530-753-2541!


  • Platinum: ALL DAY, 300 Prints, THREE Custom Designed Coffee Table Book, Digital Negatives on DVD = 3700

  • Gold: 7 hours, 250 Prints, Custom Designed Coffee Table Book, Digital Negatives on DVD = $2700

  • Silver: 6 hours, 150 Prints, Digital Negatives on DVD = $1600

  • Bronze: 5 hours, 75 Prints, Digital Negatives on DVD = $1300

  • Engagement Session: 2 hours of bridal portraits + 50 prints = $400









Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Smoking Ban Reaches Apartment Buildings

This is so awesome!

http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/01/27/america/smoking.1-416522.php

I lived in a horrible apartment building in Dayton, Ohio (Cooper Lofts, downtown Dayton at 111 Harries Street) and my neighbors smoked so much that it caused health problems and damage to my property.

I hated living at Cooper Lofts because of the constant smell of smoke in the building, common areas and my loft.  It would have been a nice place to live if it was not for the smoke.

I hope the ban on smoking continues to extend to cover everywhere that they can harm other people with their toxic fumes.

FYI, I used to be a pack-a-day smoker and I never smoked inside my house or any apartment building.  I would never smoke in an enclosed space shared with other people.

Maybe I'm just not as self-centered as my Cooper Lofts neighbors.  The rude (evil?) smokers are the problem -- if they would have some common sense and decency these types of bans would not be necessary.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/01/27/america/smoking.1-416522.php

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Nikon Sensor Quality King!

Nikon's new SLR leads the pack for sensor quality

Scientific proof!

It's not a surprise that the Nikon D3X, the company's brand-new $8,000, 24.9-megapixel SLR, tops DxO Labs' sensor performance test. What is a surprise is the margin by which it leads its rivals from Canon and Sony.

When the French firm unveiled its DxOMark Sensor benchmark test last year, Nikon's D3 was the top scorer at 80.6, a composite number that represents various performance features. Very close on its heels were Nikon's D700 at 80.5, Canon's EOS-1Ds Mark III 80.3, and later Canon's 5D Mark II at 79 and Sony's Alpha A900 at 78.9.


Sunday, January 11, 2009

VPS, LLC + Pictage = Anonymous Laywers Comments

This was posted to my other story, VPS, LLC + Pictage = Patent Highway Robbery?, but I thought it was too important to leave languishing in the comments section.

My wife is a photographer and forwarded this discussion to me. I followed the link to the docket sheet provided by Ryan (I think) but that was little help. It contained links to the ECF site for the case, but only registered attorneys who pay fees can access that. Darn.

Oh, wait: I'm an attorney and I pay those fees. So, on I went.

The first suit was against Kodak in 2002. There was alot of tussling back and forth over discovery issues, lots of high powered law firms running up massive fees. In the end, it was dismissed pursuant to an agreement which I am sure was and is confidential. No trial, no Motions to Dismiss, no Motions for Summary Judgment or other proceedings that could give us some insight into the actual merits of the case.

The next one was against Shutterfly. It was originally filed in Chicago but was bumped to Oakland. Here, too, a bunch of lint-picking over discovery issues but, in the end, dismissed by agreement.

The last one was against Pictage. Here, there was not even much argument over discovery. I'm not signed on right now, but I don't think Pictage even filed an Answer (the responsive document that defendants must file setting out its basic defenses) before the case was dismissed by agreement. This puppy was over in less than 4 months, a legal micro-second.

There are some interesting aspects and I did link to and download some pleadings and "Letter Briefs". On their face, these discuss discovery disputes only, but they do shed some light on the general parameters of the parties' underlying disputes.

Let me know if you want to know more.



What this tells me is that Pictage did not fight VPS, LLC like the other companies did...
  • Is this because they have an under funded legal departement?
  • Or did they just need an excuse to raise prices on the photographers who are already getting GOUGED by Pictage and beat up by the general economy?
I don't know which would be worse. If Pictage has a poorly funded legal department, who else will be able to hurt us via our relationship with them? If they just wanted to raise prices but couldn't be honest about it, can we trust them to tell us the truth in the future? I am going to wait to see what happens with SmugMug ... watch for filings from VPS, LLC and pray ;)

EDIT: Updated new Prior Art at http://digital2noise.blogspot.com/2009/02/pictage-vps-llc-and-prior-art.html

Friday, January 09, 2009

SmugMug + VPS, LLC = No Comment (But We have Awesome Attorneys)

Hi Cory,

I can't comment on something we're not a part of.  Thanks for your concern but at the moment, we've no involvement.

We do have awesome attorneys, yes :)


All the best,

Andy
COO & House Professional
SmugMug
www.moonriverphotography.com

SmugMug Pro Resources:
http://wiki.smugmug.net/display/SmugMug/Pros
http://www.smugmug.com/help/pro-start.mg


Cory Trese wrote:
Hello,

I am worried about SmugMug.  VPS, LLC seems to have a patent on your services.

I blogged about it and the impact it has had on the other service I use, Pictage.

http://digital2noise.blogspot.com/2009/01/vps-llc-pictage-patent-highway-robbery.html

Have you been contacted by VPS, LLC?  Is SmugMug in danger?  Do you have good lawyers?

Cory Trese
ph#:     937-609-9644
e-m:    cory.trese@gmail.com <mailto:cory.trese@gmail.com>

VPS, LLC + Pictage = Patent Highway Robbery?

I received this somewhat depressing e-mail from Pictage today...

Dear Valued Pictage Partner:

Last week Pictage completed a settlement of a patent infringement lawsuit brought against Pictage and some of our clients by VPS, LLC. Among other things, VPS's patents cover the online display of digital images and sale of products based on those digital images. VPS has licensed these patents extensively and requires that companies (including professional photographers) providing online sales of products based on online digital images pay VPS a license fee or royalty on all such online sales.

As part of the settlement with VPS, Pictage is paying a multi-million dollar fee for a license covering past and future online sales on Pictage.com. All of your past sales and those you will make in the future on Pictage.com are covered by the license to Pictage and the fees paid by Pictage. However, it is important to note that any sales that you have made or will make on any other website (including your own) are not covered by the license to Pictage.

The fees that we are paying VPS make it impossible for Pictage to continue to honor our legacy commission rate of 10%. Effective immediately, our commission rate will be 15% of online consumer sales. Those currently at 15% will see no change. In addition, we will now charge a monthly fee of 1.5% (still substantially below the best available credit card processing rates) for all sales made though our Pictage Payment Processing (P3) system.

I thank you again for your ongoing support. If you have any questions, comments or concerns please feel free to contact me.

Best regards,

Jason B. Kiefer
Founder & CEO

Did a quick Google search and found this docket:

http://dockets.justia.com/docket/court-ilndce/case_no-1:2008cv05172/case_id-223530/

Which is probably the one that they are settling out of court and passing along to there partners. I wonder if SmugMug and Yahoo are next. I am reading this VPS, LLC patent and I think it is bogus. I assume Pictage hired some competent patent lawyers but rolling over to highway robbers like VPS, LLC sucks and makes the entire patent system suck more.

Every time one of these blood suckers gets paid, it attracts more of them, like moths to the flame.

[EDIT:]
Thanks to a gentle reader, Ryan, I now have the actual link to the patent:

http://patft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=6321231.PN.&OS=PN/6321231&RS=PN/6321231

Thanks, and as always, comments & feedback welcome.

[EDIT #2:]

Another (this time anonymous) reader pointed out a few other important VPS related links. They have sued HP, Shutterfly and some other big retailers. I am in fear...

http://dockets.justia.com/docket/court-ilndce/case_no-1:2004cv01709/case_id-145809/

I cannot find the dockets regarding Flickr (Yahoo) or HP, but that might be just from bad googling again.

EDIT: http://digital2noise.blogspot.com/2009/02/pictage-vps-llc-and-prior-art.html

Cory Trese
ph#: 937-609-9644
e-m: cory.trese@gmail.com
www: http://www.corytrese.com/


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California Wedding Photography
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