It took Weegee nearly three weeks to get those forms signed for this one -
“The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”
Now I don't want in any way to stop photographers, professional or amateur, taking photographs of anyone in a public place. But I do think that in this day and age we need to think more carefully than ever what we do with those images.
In most of the world, as a general rule, you need a model release when you publish an image for a "commercial" (promotional, as in "advertisement" of a product or "endorsement" of an organisation etc.) purpose.
If the purpose is not commercial no need for model release.
The three guys in front of the Taj Mahal could have been published in a travel guide, a magazine article featuring cricket in India, or whatever publication without need for a model release.
In general is the publisher who needs a model release. The photographer merely takes the photograph. He's not responsible for the usage. The publisher is responsible and knows the laws of the countries where he publishes.
"Fine art" reproduction is not publication and does not require model release, either.
I give false data to internet sites as well (not this. Maybe). But never totally absurd. Google felt obliged to lock your account due to some norms or to defensive behaviour.
It's a bit like those internet site selling vodka where you have to declare that you are above 18. They have no way to know, but if you say you are 5, they will not let you in for the very good reason that they asked you that question not because they really care, but because they don't want to be accused of not caring
Didn't he have an assistant?
Originally Posted by cliveh
I agree, but in this case the image IS comercial and I don't think the photographer asked the subjects permision he just darkend their faces to comply with the "general rule" thinking that some poor workers from the slums of India are never going to have the finance to sue him in a US, UK court over the issue
Originally Posted by Diapositivo
Yes they could and in all of those instances there would have been no need to black out the faces of the subjects.
Originally Posted by Diapositivo
Absolute balderdash. If you post your images to a legitimate stock library you should have researched their clients before submission. If you submit to a legitimate stock library they should not have used this image in this context without a release. If posted to a web library you should have more ethics as a photographer. You decide where your images are used by your choice of library.
Originally Posted by Diapositivo
I don't think so. If they really thought I was less than a year old (despite the fact I had an account for over three years) they could have e-mailed me to confirm my already submitted details. They do not need my credit card details or national insurance (social security) No. for these purposes
Originally Posted by Diapositivo
Where possible when signing up or editing my information on Social Media and non-commerce (e.g. Facebook, APUG, videohelp, etc.) when asked for location information, most of the time I give correct but vague information. For example, on here, my profile says I am from Central Illinois. That is correct information but does not drill down to the city level (if someone gets my city information it's easy to find me because my town is very small and everybody knows everybody). On Facebook, my location is given as "<name of county>, Illinois." Again, correct but vague info. I've also been known to give out-of-date information (putting in the name of a town I used to live in).
Obviously for sites I am on where I am buying items, the billing address has to be correct, and if they're shipping something to me, that has to be correct too, but otherwise they don't need enough info to be able to find me in real life.
Shoot more film.
There are eight ways to put a slide into a projector tray. Seven of them are wrong.
If you are going without a model release, you need to answer the question Clint Eastwood asks in the movie Dirty
Harry - 'Do you feel lucky?'
Sponsored Ad. (Subscribers to APUG have the option to remove this ad.)
Hmmm, Gary Winogrand ran into a problem with one of his books because he didn't have a model release, and there was a "recent" case of a guy with a hidden 8x10 camera photographing in subways who was sued. (I remember the photograph, but not the photographer.)
If in doubt, photograph in some other city, and then display the photograph in your locality. Therefore, the likelihood that the people photographed will see themselves is greatly reduced.
The first period is total nonsense. When you give an image to a stock library (don't know what you mean for "legitimate") you have no idea who is going to license that image and for what use. The number of possible clients is in tenths of thousands or more, and even if the agency had only 5 clients, you wouldn't know what they would use any image for. My agencies sells images to anybody. Even specialist agencies sell images to anybody, they are specialist as far as the subject matter they represent, not as far as the clients are concerned. And no, no photographer on the world researches the clients of an agency before submission. That's absolute bullstuff. Clients are many thousands and can be added any day. The photographer is not responsible for the usage or he would not take pictures of anything but flowers.
Originally Posted by Mr Man
The agency does not use the image, it licenses it for a certain use. The same image can be used for "commercial purpose", for "editorial purpose" and even for defamatory purpose without the photographer being aware, or really care. I don't care at all what a client does with my images because it's entirely his business. If a person smiles in front of my camera in India (I am told people actually come in the frame in India, voluntarily, for the pleasure of it) so be it. The Taj-Mahal will be published with that person in front of it.
If you are a knife producer you sell knives. The fact that people can commit suicide with them is not relevant to you. Nor to the distributor. Up to a certain extent it is the business of the last shop. If the client says "I need a knife to commit suicide" I see your point. The knife producer is totally above all this reasoning. What he cares, is that his knives cut. What I care, is that my image work.
I also don't know what you mean for a "web library". If you mean something like Flickr, it's perfectly legitimate to post there the guys playing cricket with the Taj-Mahal behind them. I mean, the guys playing cricket are a perfectly legitimate subject to post also without the Taj-Mahal behind them.
If Henri Cartier-Bresson had his head full of all this pseudo-ethical mental masturbations he would never had printed anything. What is out there in the road is out there to be photographed, be it the Afghan girl or the "Cariatids".
In general may I advice you to refrain to try to teach "ethics" to other people on the net because some people gets easily pissed when somebody wants to teach them ethics and I count myself in that number.
Regarding the second statement, I inform you that firms like Google or YouTube have an immense number of users. There is nobody who is dealing in person with your case and is bothering to contact you just in case you inserted your birth date wrong, and ask you for a clarification. All this administrative work is done by computer. Your expectation to give your age as a minor (1 year is a minor) and then expect them to contact you to ask you if you really are 1 year old seems very odd to me.
Last edited by Diapositivo; 09-03-2012 at 05:59 AM. Click to view previous post history.
In regards to stock agencies, most of them will not accept images of people without releases. Regardless of whether or not they take unreleased images, most of them will have a save-and-hold-harmless clause in their contract with the photographer (and with their clients) that says they are not liable for any damages or fees resulting from lawsuit. So if you the photographer submit an unreleased image, and say, Marlboro tobacco buys it and uses it in a global advertising campaign, and the poor joe schmo from Mumbai whose photo you used sees it, hires a lawyer and sues the pants off of you, the people on the hook are Marlboro tobacco and YOU, the photographer. And Marlboro probably has a clause in their contract somewhere that protects them from liability. So it falls back on YOU, the photographer. Long and short of it, if you're selling images to a stock agency, GET A RELEASE, even if the agency doesn't require one. The damages from a suit like the aforementioned hypothetical Marlboro ad would run into the millions. Which you don't have.
These days it's easier than ever to get a release. They have model release apps for mobile devices now which will accept digital signatures via the touch screen, can integrate photos of the subject into the release so it makes it hard for a subject to say, "I never signed that - it's not me", and will even email a PDF of the signed release to the subject.
By all means no.
Originally Posted by TheFlyingCamera
When I give an image to an agency, my agency (any agency) asks, and I say, whether I have a model release, and whether I have a property release.
If this information I give is correct, it's end of responsibility for me. You final client can license that image, knowing that it has no model release.
I repeat that as a photographer I cannot know who the final client will be and what is the usage. This is something that only the final client, and the agency, know.
(Most agencies will actually not disclose the final client to the photographer, for fear the the photographer contacts the client directly and tries to do business with them in the future cutting out the agency. So the photographer "never" knows the actual final user unless he discovers who he is by himself).
If you browse any stock agency you see that for any image it is indicated whether a model (or property) release is available. Those are indicated as MR or PR.
If you - the final client - know that you are going to need a model release for the image you ask the agency a copy of the model release so that you check that it is compatible with your intended use. This is precisely a responsibility of you as final user. Every agency allows to browse with filters excluding unreleased images.
If, for instance, you are Marlboro and the model release is present but states that the image cannot be used in the tobacco trade, then it is your responsibility to check that. In this case a case can be made that the agency is responsible as well. The photographer is obviously free of responsibility because he's never asked whether the image can be licensed to Marlboro.
I have never seen a case where a photographer was sued for violation of model release (or lack thereof) for an image given to an agency. The photographer is certainly responsible if he licenses the image directly to the final client and if the contract (which is signed between photographer and final client) states a usage which goes against the model release, or requires one. The photographer is certainly responsible if he declares the false (if he counterfeits a MR for instance).
I have many images with people and no model release. I declare I have no model release. They are perfectly fine for editorial use in most countries.
People who publishes image is not dumb. They perfectly know that they need model release if the purpose of the publication is commercial. Marlboro wouldn't use an unlicensed image for an advertising campaign.
As a further note, the agency trusts the client. If the client declares that he's going to use the image for a travel book, and accordingly signs a contract, and then he uses the image to promote the travel book (which is a commercial usage) he is responsible toward the model, toward the agency and toward the photographer for copyright infringement.
The agency is in no obligation to check if the final client actually says the truth. The agency is responsible only for their own deed, just like anybody.
Last edited by Diapositivo; 09-04-2012 at 12:39 PM. Click to view previous post history.
In truth it must be said that the great ignorance of the general public (not of publishers, or Marlboro) regarding this matter has created a climate in which typically microstock agencies, which typically license to unprofessional buyers (for their blogs, for an intranet, for an office presentation, for a photograph to be hung in a restaurant or barber shop etc.) tend to ask a model release for every image containing a person.
Microstock agencies typically license only with the "Royalty Free" contract (RF). A "Royalty Free" license leaves the user free to make any use, and repeatedly so, within the terms of the contract which are generally quite ample and able to always cover the needs of the small firm.
A Rights Managed (RM) contract, instead, only licenses for a single specific use which is described in the contract.
A RF contract, for this reason, never states which is the licensed usage, because the usage is "open ended". What the industry relies on is that the final client (who can be a very occasional picture buyer) understands the subtleties of copyright, licensing, RF vs RM, etc.
What can easily happen is that the final client of microstock agencies typically doesn't understand really how copyright works. This is pretty understandable as the matter is somehow complicated and unprofessional users (people who do not belong to the publishing trade, I mean) can easily misunderstand concepts and make mistakes in good faith.
So microstock agencies always ask for a model release and typically don't represent an image with a person (as a subject) if not released.
a) the judge might find the agency responsible for giving to an unprofessional user a dangerous weapon. You don't give knives to children and you don't license "royalty free" images to unprofessional users;
b) the entire industry, or the agency in any case, can be damaged by a wave of panic regarding how dangerous it is to buy RF images from microstock agency.
My main agency, Alamy, which is not a microstock agency, still wants a MR if the picture portrays people AND if it has to be licensed as RF.
If the image contains people, and it has no model release, the image can be licensed only as RM (Rights managed). This is the way agencies normally behave: they don't license as RF images for which a MR would be necessary for commercial use. They sell them, but as RM.
A RM license exactly specifies the usage so there is no possibility of breaching of copyright for which an agency (or a photographer) can be deemed responsible.
In the same situation a microstock agency would typically decline to represent the picture as they tend to only license with the RF scheme.
This situation creates the internet myth that the photographer is responsible for the usage of an image given to an agency. The photographer is responsible if he states the false, e.g. if he declares he has a MR when he hasn't one or if he counterfeits one. The only responsibility of the photographer is to say the truth.
It should be noted that MR can be "conditional" so the presence of a MR is not a "binary" case, yes or no. The final client must check the MR in its entirety. The agency must give the MR to the client in its entirety. Besides, a MR never covers defamatory usage. For that, an explicit MR is required in any case.
This case of defamatory usage for a "released" image is actually what I see on the internet brought in front of a judge. That is, again, because unprofessional buyers don't necessarily know how things really work. A defamatory usage can happen much more easily than people think. A defamatory usage would not be allowed in most jurisdictions also for editorial usage.
Marlboro, or multinational, big firms etc. never ignore anything and are never caught with this kind of problems. Besides, they would never use a RF image because by definition an RF image can be repeatedly licensed to many clients, you never have any kind of exclusivity of use and you cannot know its past, present or future usage.
Last edited by Diapositivo; 09-04-2012 at 12:49 PM. Click to view previous post history.