Band photos from their heyday?

That’s a leap in logic that makes no sense.

Roon licences material from providers like Rovi, and that’s where those pictures come from.

Those providers licence images from rights holders (be they image banks, record companies or individual photographers).

The problem, both in terms of rights and in terms of image choices is with Roon’s providers. There should be metadata there, either as sidecar files or in the headers, so best case scenario, it’s good and doesn’t just have a digitation date but also when the picture was taken, it’s useable to determine a “heyday”, and all you need to do is figure out “heyday” for the tens of thousands of artists in the database.

Since what you need is material that’s cleared in terms of rights, another way around it, assuming there’s multiple pictures available, would be to crowdsource picture choice to Roon users from the metadata provider’s database, without allowing for picture uploads.

Fair use would cover a user making a bitchin’ poster of Brian Austin Green for their bedroom (notice how the picture there is from his heyday). Unless the original material was licensed, it wouldn’t cover that user putting it on Etsy and selling it, and it wouldn’t cover another user taking it from Etsy and selling it back as a bedspread (which is what Roon would be doing if they allowed for users to distribute their choice of artist pictures).

We get images from TiVo (Rovi), but the very high quality artist images typically come from (do a search for “fanart” on this forum).

The website isn’t brilliant, but it has an up-voting system for images which we take into consideration, so why not create a fanart account and cast some votes?

1 Like

I’m not a lawyer, but I did stay at a holiday inn express last nite:

from fanart -

Fair Use
While we will remove images at the copyright holders request, we believe we have a fairly good case for fair use, for the following reasons:

    • Images aren’t big enough to be suitable for printing, meaning only the original copyright holder would be able to make use of the image for anything other than displaying on a screen.
    • The images aren’t the actual product in most cases, I.E. an image for the movie Thor, isn’t actually the product – the movie – Thor and so the owner’s rights should be very minimally affected.
    • We provide a completely free service, that anyone can use.
    • The purpose of the site is to help fans get the best looking library possible, which in turn results in higher fan engagement where fans are uploading images, discussing images, voting on their favourite images which also acts as free promotion for the source of their fandom.
    • The images are generally transformative in nature – Where the original image may have been used as say an album cover – it is used by end users as a visual indication linking a physical product (an album) with a non-physical medium (An album they bought digitally, or format shifted), generally displayed in a digital format (in a mediacentre for example).
    • A lot of the images are made painstakingly by hand.
    • Most of the images on the site are PR / Promotional images, that the networks / studios / labels want shared as widely as possible in order to help promote the show / movie / band.
    • The exception to all this would be where the copyright holder is a photographer who makes a living licensing out the images, under this case, uploaders must get the permision from the photographer before uploading their images to the site.

Well, I guess Getty Images’ licensing FAQ page makes for more relevant reading than Gideons’ bible.

This is irrelevant.

It’s monetised

Same could be said of Napster.

This doesn’t apply to artist portraits.

Emphasis on most.

The first picture in their “latest” music backgrounds category (what’d appear like a red carpet pic of Hayley Mills) looks like it was lifted by a user from Getty, without credit to them or Walter McBride, who took it. I’d wager it isn’t licensed from either Getty nor McBride for RoonLabs to use.

Oh, and it’s also factually incorrect to state it isn’t big enough for print.

1920x1080 (or 1080p), especially if it’s high quality, which, in the case of that Hayley Mills picture, it is, is more than enough for a daily, or in a magazine if you’re not being dumb about it.

The Canon D30, which was used by a number of photographers to cover initial operations in Afghanistan was a 3mpix, 2160x1440 camera. Canon’s pro body at the time was 2464x1648, so you’d better damn believe those files are usable in print and that is full of shit when they say they aren’t. It is obviously suboptimal, and most photo editors in their right minds wouldn’t do it if they had any other choice, but see under “use of video stills to illustrate articles about ISIS” if you’d like more recent examples.

Fair use where ? Roon crosses many jurisdictions, some of which do not have fair use rights. In Australia, for example there are limited fair dealing exceptions, none of which would seem to apply.

This discussion provides some good resources about jurisdiction. Basically plaintiffs can sue in multiple jurisdictions, according to what laws and prospects for recovery suit them.

1 Like

jRiver does this trick handily you n their Theatre mode. There seems to be no limit in the photos they display when activated. Great band pictures both new and old same for individuals.

It’s a great feature. I doubt if they are paying any royalties for this data as if one does a search in his browser the same photos show up and are displayed one at a time on the screen for a few moments then on to the next photo. It’s a great feature.

I’m sure the wizards of ROON could come up with something better for sure as they are a class above the guys at jRiver it seems.

Come on Wizards of ROON.

1 Like

Take a look at the picture of Paul Simon. He really deserves better

Saw that yesterday.

I’ve often replaced artist pics I didn’t like or were of low quality.


I’ve probably replaced half of those in my “Artist Favorites” list.

1 Like

In the case of the example posted (“The Smashing Pumpkins”), it’s also not the proper name of the band. Rather than “the” it is simply Smashing Pumpkins, which takes it from being simply the name of a thing to what could potentially be an action.

My argumentation here is off topic, but can’t say that one is as easy to settle on though, as some of their releases uses one or the other variant. From MCIS and onwards they write The Smashing Pumpkins.

Thanks for that… I did not realize the band itself had changed to using “The” since the early days, when I recall Billy (or someone in the band) insisting the “The” was not a part of it… now it is! Fascinating! I guess my information is out of date - sort of like how the original poster here might wish the artwork to be :slight_smile:

Well jRiver has a system, called Theater Mode, when invoked it displays a myriad of the artist pictures for a couple of seconds each. The longer the song lasts the more images are displayed. They can be displayed on any monitor or tablet. It’s very cool. That was one of the best features.

I believe it would display the same images as if you did a browser search of The Rolling Stones, then select images. Then all the images became a slide show displayed by jRiver in Theater Mode. I doubt if copyright comes into play because jRiver must use the images under Fair Use. They won’t want to risk a lawsuit either. One can’t print them through jRiver. They are just displayed as a slide show exactly as they appear in an internet search.

Just listening to Black Sabbath’s Heaven and Hell album. The vocalist in this album was Ronnie James Dio, but the artist photo shows Ozzy Osbourne pointing his finger at me. Ronnie flips in his grave!

1 Like

One approach to solve this with proper licensing is to do a blanket license with Getty Images for band and artist photos in mass. Roon would have to do content feed integration and match and there would be cost for it but it would massively enrich the graphic element of Roon and would certainly include photos from bands/artists early days that the OP wanted. I would be happy to pay an incremental fee for this option if that was the only way roon could justify the work and cost… Roon could further enhance this capability by adding a thumbs up/down option to each photo so that over time the best photos got the heaviest play time…

Just an idea…


I’d like just more than one band photo to be honest. Years of looking at the exact same artist photos in Roon gets old. Some variety, where it is available, would be great!

1 Like

Getty images would solve this issue, they generally have 100s or more images for almost every band/artist…

1 Like

Interesting… I went to to look up The Smashing Pumpkins and the three top rated background images include the picture of Nicole Fiorentino. I voted for the other two which are band photos (both with Nicole, btw), so let’s see how long it takes Roon to pull in one of those. is interesting and totally dependent on users to upload and it has very specific format requirements, i.e. sizes and resolutions. In the case of The Smashing Pumpkins, there are 10 images, most are circa 2010-2014, which is certainly not the band’s “heyday”. There are no band photos of the classic original 1990’s lineup. But of course, someone could upload one and gather enough votes and it would show up in Roon.