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  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy K
    I would also discuss with the parents a few weeks beforehand what guarantees of privacy, use of their child's image etc. they would be comfortable with. Just turning up with a 'Can I take photos of your child, here please sign this' I feel will be unlikely to ellicit a positive response.
    I agree totally. My advice with the document was only a part of what I do when I take kid photos. I talk the parents and get their permission and when they trust me I present them with the document and say that it is in their interest, too. They are happy to have the agreement down on paper and I have never had any bad repsonse to this. Everybody could see my reason for having this and felt that I was serious and honest.

    Morten

  2. #12
    blansky's Avatar
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    Not that this is necessarily great advice but I've been photographing kids and families and every other human type that you can think of for many years. I've never had anyone sign any type of release in all that time.

    I run a weekly newspaper ad for years and I may mention in passing that I think I will probably want to run such and such picture in the ad. Everyone is pleased and excitid about that. I have had permanent display space in malls and doctors offices, dentist offices, toy stores etc as well, and again never a problem.

    So I guess what I'm saying is that it's all about communication and trust with the clients that is probably more important than anything else.


    Michael McBlane
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

  3. #13
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    So I guess what I'm saying is that it's all about communication and trust with the clients that is probably more important than anything else.
    This is true in the majority of instances. It's the few that surprise you that can throw you for a nasty loop.

    Sometimes people say, "Oh, OK, that's fine" without really understanding what you're saying, or thinking it through. Some others change their minds later, when they see themselves or their child in print and it freaks them. Others may have been OK with the idea of having their image published (web or print) but they did not like the particular image you used. In those cases, without a signed release stating that they are giving you permission to use any of their images in any way you see fit, you can really pay for it, literally and figuratively.

    Chances are good that, if your communication is good, you will not have to rest on a model release. On the other hand, it certainly doesn't do any harm to have them sign, and the peace of mind is absolutely worth the trouble.

    - CJ

  4. #14
    Nicole's Avatar
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    Thanks very much for the good advice. Yes model releases are the way to go. Is it worth getting it written up by a lawyer or is that too far and not necessary?

  5. #15

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    Here in the states you can pick up the release forms at many camera stores for a few $$. Not knowing if the contractual laws would translate to
    Australia you might want to contact a local(in country) shop. It's gotta be cheaper than having a lawyer write up a custom form.

  6. #16
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaggy
    Here in the states you can pick up the release forms at many camera stores for a few $$. Not knowing if the contractual laws would translate to
    Australia you might want to contact a local(in country) shop. It's gotta be cheaper than having a lawyer write up a custom form.
    Be *very* careful with those "One Size Fits All" forms.

    My Legal Adviser (youngest daughter) worked for a time as a Legal Secretary for a large law firm representing a LARGE catalog mail-order house. She has first-hand information about litigation between photographers, models, the clients and everyone else involved.
    While there are differences between state laws, most are minor: "Acceptability" in the realm of General Corporate Law is what usually leads to law suits.

    Example: A corporation cannot have heirs. If there is a statement to the effect that "This applies to the photographer, his asssigns and heirs", and it is written to a corporation, it could be enough to invalidate the whole thing... but , n.b. "could". It may well lead to an arguing point.
    Another is the clause that states, "These images may be used without concern for the adverse effect they may have on the model, whether humiliating, degrading, causing public ridicule ... etc." That will NEVER hold up in court, because they are prima facie evidence of a Breach of Good Faith. I would NEVER sign a model release with that clause in it, myself, anyway.

    My daughter re-wrote my model release (copied out of a book), removing a lot of "stuff" and adding a few others. Independently, other Lawyers have evaluated my - her - Release, and advised me that it would not be difficult to support in court.

    What to do? If you are the average small-time operator, I wouldn't worry too much. Imagine yourself in the "subjects" place, and act in "good faith". That ... operating, or even attempting to operate in "Good Faith" ... is the strongest legal defense you can have.

    If you are still worried, consider the legal expense as being equivalent to the price of any other piece of equipment you have. Talk to a lawyer - the problem would most likely be finding one who knows about this area of law - and negotiate a fee for writing/ evaluating a Model Release. It shouldn't take much time ... translation: cost a whole lot.
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  7. #17
    bjorke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blansky
    I run a weekly newspaper ad for years and I may mention in passing that I think I will probably want to run such and such picture in the ad.
    I'm surprised you don't put language to that effect on the receipts and/or work order forms (you must have some sort of paper trail).

    "What Would Zeus Do?"
    KBPhotoRantPhotoPermitAPUG flickr Robot

  8. #18
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    You're right, it is surprising. I've just never done it and never had any complaints or problems of any kind. But I probably should include it. somewhere.


    Michael
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

  9. #19

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    Nicole, I'm an Australian children's photographer, and have a model release that would work in this instance I'm sure. I got it from somewhere on, or linked to the Copyright Australia website. It's pretty simple, but comprehensive enough, and I once had a client who was a lawyer go over it and give it the nod. So, all in all, it's a good place to start at least. Email me if you'd like a copy, I'd be happy to send it to you.

    There is a real concern with photographing children in a child care centre, I know that the centre will usually have forms of their own regardign photographs of the child there. The laws are a bit stringent because putting photographs of children on public display could compromise their safety (custody disputes etc I gather). It's worth covering all bases. It's a great opportunity, good luck with it all!

    Simone
    simone@simonehanckel.com.au

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