Mark Sableman of Thompson Coburn LLP writes for Lexology about the interesting distinction between copyright ownership and physical ownership of photographs and their usage.

““I own the photos.”

It seems like a simple statement, but in copyright law, ownership isn’t simple. One person can own physical photographs, but not have the right to use them, because someone else owns the copyrights.

That distinction is the heart of a case being fought in federal court in Chicago, over the treasure trove of photographs taken by Vivian Maier, whose street photography became known and famous only after her death.”

Read more here.