The Picture of Bizarre: Amazon Patent Took a Shot at the Rights to White-Background Photography

It sounds like case of snap judgment, but it turns out that Amazon owns a patent that grants the company IP ownership of the process of taking photos in front of seamless white backgrounds. The patent was filed in 2011 and simply titled “Studio Arrangement.” exposed the details behind this unusual filing.

The patent filing meticulously described the arrangement of elements in the studio needed to produce a quality product shot. It specified everything from ISO settings and focal lengths, to the precise positioning of platforms and light sources.

In addition to spelling out every step of the picture-taking process, it also asserted that this patent-worthy procedure could provide a studio arrangement that would eliminate the need for any image retouching or special effects to achieve the desired results.

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The particulars of the patent would likely make it unenforceable, but it does highlight the importance of images when marketing a product. Photographing a product in front of a seamless white background focuses attention on a product and exhibits it without distraction. It also makes it easier for graphic designers to place the image in online promotions.

If white-background photography weren’t so essential to overall image quality and product marketing, then Amazon wouldn’t have snapped up the rights to it.

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