domains are cheap, just a few dollars a year and sometimes even included in hosting costs. As to protecting images, don't bother. Don't put anything on your site and full resolution, and include some contact information in a way that doesn't effect the quality of the image itself. That way if someone saves an image of yours to their hard drive, years later when they run across it they can still find out who you are and give you a job. If you try to stop people from saving the images at all, first of all theres no entirely effective way of doing this, and second you're treating your fans as untrustworthy criminals.
Also I was curious to know how I can protect my images with pop-up boxes that do not allow viewers to copy/paste/cut/highlight/print...etc
Forget about this.
If it's showing on my monitor there is a local copy somewhere on my hard drive and I can make a copy if I want to.
As Squid said, just put some contact info on it and don't post print resolution images.
I like http://1and1.com/, they are cheap and reliable. And you want people to save your images. File them for reference, send them to their friends, make sure your url or email is on each of them and you are in business.
They don't work for several reasons.
1> When you view an image a copy of it is saved in your internet files, it's the work of but a moment to retrieve it from there.
3> They can still screenshot the work and crop it out of the screenshot if they really want to take it.
Theft will happen, no matter how much protection you put on your work. Deal with it when it happens and worry about it when it happens. The only fool proof way to ensure your work is never stolen ever is to never show it to anyone else at all.
If the 3rd party goes belly up, will you ever get your domain back? My registrar went belly up and my info was still in the central registry, so I got it back from another registrar. This is stuff that can happen.
Please don't do watermarks or other image protection. It's stupid. If anyone wants to steal your work, they will. It's just a risk you'll have to take, and take comfort in the fact that far more established and better artists are out there doing the same. You want to showcase your work. Also my domain and hosting was around $200 for 5 years. If you can commit to longer the prices keep dropping. I think 10 years was $350, 15 was $500.
Please don't do watermarks or other image protection. It's stupid.
Watermarking is not stupid, unless a person is dim enough to cover the image in highly visible text in an effort to make sure people don't steal it. An unobtrusive watermark can often help if it needs to be taken to court.
You're right. I shouldn't have said stupid. I suppose what I should have said is that if someone like James Jean doesn't worry about it, you probably don't have anything to worry about either.
Not true. Odds on he or the companies he works for have the best lawyers to go after thieves, your average person doesn't have their protection so they need to make sure their ass is covered as much as possible. If someone takes out your watermark it helps prove deliberate theft.