Photographs use legality people public etc etc

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Destin_FL, May 10, 2005.

  1. Destin_FL

    Destin_FL Guest

    Hi all,
    I have a legal question, of course understanding that I am asking professional
    photographers not attorneys - but if anyone knows, you all will.

    I am wondering what my liability is in using people in photographs.... example
    1: Let's say I am at a festival or fair or something that is obviously open to
    the public, but is on sort of private property, i.e. a real estate
    development/community like www.sandestin.com or maybe on a church grounds or
    something. If I am walking around shooting images of people doing things and I
    anticipate using these images in things like websites or brochures or
    newsletters for realtors, am I allowed to have images of these
    arbitrary/stranngers people in my printed media?

    Does it matter that the photos were taken on (sort of) private property even
    though it was a public event?

    OK, example 2: Let's say I am walking down the street and want to shoot folks
    having lunch at an outdoor patio of a restaurant or something... am I allowed to
    print that image(s) into brochures, newsletters, etc.

    Does this stuff/legal issues change if I am using the images for things in an
    effort to generate revenue?

    Are there websites, etc. that you guys can point me to that might illuminate all
    this for me?

    Thanks in advance a ton for the help, answers, input.

    Very sincerely
    Tim
     
    Destin_FL, May 10, 2005
    #1
    1. Advertisements

  2. Destin_FL

    Charlie Self Guest

    It sounds like you're going to use those shots in advertising brochures
    and fliers. If that's the case, you absolutely need model releases from
    every identifiable person.
     
    Charlie Self, May 10, 2005
    #2
    1. Advertisements

  3. Destin_FL

    Mr. Mark Guest

    I am wondering what my liability is in using people in photographs....

    This should be added to an FAQ for all the rec.photo and alt.photo groups.
     
    Mr. Mark, May 10, 2005
    #3
  4. Different areas will have different requirements.

    In the most likely situations, if you are standing in a public area, you
    can take photographs. There are exceptions. For example most authorities
    would not include photographs through a window using a high power telephoto
    lens. I would also be careful about photographs of children. Now the
    second issue is "..am I allowed to have images of these arbitrary/stranngers
    people in my printed media?" Generally not if you can identify the
    individual.

    I suggest you get the opinion from a local attorney before publishing
    any such images.
     
    Joseph Meehan, May 10, 2005
    #4
  5. Destin_FL

    Annika1980 Guest

    My submission for the most recent SI: "Parents" was taken
    downtown last week during a parade. As I don't expect to
    profit from this pic, I didn't worry about obtaining model releases.

    http://www.pbase.com/shootin/image/43126736
     
    Annika1980, May 10, 2005
    #5
  6. Destin_FL

    Destin_FL Guest

    OK, if I do not specifically SELL the photograph to for instance, my client, but
    my client (usually a Realtor) uses the image in marketing materials to
    (hopefully) bring him more business, how does that effect the legalities?

    Also, I have gotten wonderful answers from several of you; thanks so much.....
    one of the common nuances seems to be "identifiable" persons; these of course
    would all be strangers to me, so does identifiable apply, or does that term
    identifiable actually mean = I need to walk up to them because I can
    specifically "identify" them as being in that shot I just took / am about to
    take

    Tim






    My submission for the most recent SI: "Parents" was taken
    downtown last week during a parade. As I don't expect to
    profit from this pic, I didn't worry about obtaining model releases.

    http://www.pbase.com/shootin/image/43126736
     
    Destin_FL, May 10, 2005
    #6
  7. Destin_FL

    Mr. Mark Guest

    OK, if I do not specifically SELL the photograph to for instance, my
    client, but
    Then the photo is being used for commercial use and the rule posted by
    Charlie Self applies.
     
    Mr. Mark, May 10, 2005
    #7
  8. Destin_FL

    Charlie Self Guest

    Identifiable means that they can idenity themselves, or someone who
    knows them can identify them. Whether or not you know them is
    irrelevant.

    While you may never get caught, you cannot legally use another person's
    image for commercial purposes without permission.

    As an incidental point, this may vary from place to place around the
    world, but within the U.S., it does not vary.
     
    Charlie Self, May 10, 2005
    #8
  9. Destin_FL

    Sheldon Guest

    I'm almost positive you can use the photos for news shots -- newspaper
    photogs rarely if ever have to get a release of everyone in a photo as long
    as it's in a public place (I used to work for AP). However, if the photo is
    to be used commercially you must get a release. I also think if the person
    is a public figure photos are much more lax. In other words, you can take a
    photo of the president or a movie star and you don't have to get anything
    from them. Now, if you are going to use the photo in an ad, you'll be in
    big trouble without a release.

    I got a photo of a movie star in a prison exercise yard from the building
    across the street. Made a lot of front pages and nobody said a word, except
    my editor who loved me. I think a lot of your answers will be in an AP
    Stylebook.
     
    Sheldon, May 11, 2005
    #9
  10. Destin_FL

    Jer Guest

    Bret, I can't help it so I have to comment... those people look like
    they're about to rat you out. :)
     
    Jer, May 11, 2005
    #10
  11. Destin_FL

    Marvin Guest

    <snip>
    If I were the local business man, I would also be concerned that my advertising would
    annoy potential customers. and their friends, who don't like their photos to be taken
    when they aren't ready, and especially to have their photos used commercially.
     
    Marvin, May 11, 2005
    #11
  12. Destin_FL

    fanciman Guest

    WHat about these 2 scenarios:

    Street scene, strangers walking, i take a candid photo of somebody
    with / without their awareness. Later i use that shot in

    an art exhibition
    a coffee table book of photos

    I never got their name in the first place and have no clue who they
    are...
     
    fanciman, May 11, 2005
    #12
  13. Destin_FL

    Ken Weitzel Guest

    You are kidding, right?
     
    Ken Weitzel, May 11, 2005
    #13
  14. Destin_FL

    Walter Banks Guest

    Most photo contests insist that people in photographs have
    given the photographer written permission to use their image.

    I know of a case where this in part also applies to objects
    as well. A friend of mine has a particularity nice restored
    old car and series of ad's that used this image without his
    permission (Including one with the license plate visible)
    were pulled because he objected.

    A local television station called my house a few months
    ago asking permission to run a story that had the house in
    one of the shots they intended to run. (Permission granted
    I had no idea they were even there and the story had
    nothing to do with my family or the house.)

    If in doubt get permission.

    w..
     
    Walter Banks, May 11, 2005
    #14
  15. Destin_FL

    Destin_FL Guest

    I want to thank you all for your time and input. The answers were about what I
    expected. Can't go around willy nilly shooting people. :)

    For specific scenarios I will check with a local attorney, but you all have
    certainly explained things perfectly.
    I really do appreciate it.

    I saw an idea that this might be worthy of being in a rec.photo FAQ; I would
    think so too. As these fantastic dSLR's get into the hands of so many more
    people, there will inevitably be more instances of amateurs receiving payment
    for photography, and they should be informed when and where they can use images
    of people and objects.

    Sincerely,

    Tim







    _________
    If in doubt get permission.

    w..
     
    Destin_FL, May 11, 2005
    #15
  16. Destin_FL

    Iain Laskey Guest

    I saw that! It was a program about neighbours who have to endure other
    neighbours who are always taking photos of everything. They named names,
    showed where they lived and everything! ;-)

    Iain
     
    Iain Laskey, May 12, 2005
    #16
  17. Yeah, but did you tape it or just take pictures of the TV screen?


    --
    Matt Silberstein

    All in all, if I could be any animal, I would want to be
    a duck or a goose. They can fly, walk, and swim. Plus,
    there there is a certain satisfaction knowing that at the
    end of your life you will taste good with an orange sauce
    or, in the case of a goose, a chestnut stuffing.
     
    Matt Silberstein, May 12, 2005
    #17
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.