anyone know the legal requirements on posting photo's/video's on the internet?? do you have to have written concent of people in the pic's/vid's before posting like on u-tube? or is it just when you are trying to sell for proffit?
This gets complicated fast, but...
Generally, if you take the picture in a public forum/venue/area, you will only need a model release for any recognizable face if you are are endeavoring to use it somehow in the pursuit of money or enhancing a business. Also, buildings are sometimes included in the release requirement, although that does not make much sense to me. There are exceptions and other odd inclusions... lots of them.
News articles are exempt from some of these requirements, as are pictures of celebrities... sometimes.
There are two basic issue, both of which get pretty complicated. One is copyright ownership, which is to say that you need to have the right to copy and distribute an image. We can simplify that issue down to the point that if you took the photograph for yourself, you own the copyright and can post it or copy it if you want to.
Originally Posted by FullFreezer
I'm assuming that what you really want to know about though is not copyright, but rather which uses of a photography require permission of someone else to use in a particular way. This can get exceedingly complex, and there is no question that if you are skirting the edges here you absolutely want to consult with a competent attorney who specializes in Intellectual Property.
A very simplified description of how this works is that if something is an "editorial" use, you do not need permission... as long as it does not constitute libel/slander in some way. A derogatory depiction of a person or their property may land you in court, even if it is true. Editorial use mean you are "discussing" something that is pictured. It can be, for example, a news worthy scene such as a sporting event, a disaster. or even just a landscape where some individual or their property just happens to be part of the scene when the image was made. Editorial use can also cover taking a picture of an individual that you do not even know. Hence some handsome man or beautiful woman walking down the street in front of your house can be photographed and just because you think it made a good looking picture you can post it to the Internet; and you can print it an sell prints too.
However, you or any person that you transfer a printed or digital copy of an image to, cannot use the likeness of a person or property that is identified with them, for "commercial" purposes. I probably can't do justice to describing what that means. But for example, if you use the picture to advertize something for sale the implication is that the person pictured approves of what you are selling. You must have their permission for that kind of use. It isn't the likeness of the person that counts, it is the association of their reputation with your commercial interest.
Typically the way that is described is very misleading, because people correctly say that if you can "recognize" the person (or a property that this applies to) it means you need a release. But that does not mean that you have to be able to tell who the person is from the image! It means that if by any means it is possible to determine the identity, they are then "identifiable". A very good example is that if you hire a model to wear jewlery, for example rings, for photographs that will be used to sell the jewelery, and all that can be seen in the picture is the model's hands and fingers, you absolutely need a model release. Without it, if the model can show other images clearly taken at the same time, a signed check for the worked hours, or whatever... if the judge and jury can determine the fingers in the picture use are those of the model there has to be a model release.
In some ways corporations are considered as a person, so a picture of IBM's headquarters building, as one example, might qualify in the same way. I don't even begin to understand how all of this applies to property and buildings.
One other issue that involves copyright should also be brought up. You cannot use in any way a picture that is a copyright violation without a license or other excemption from copyright law. A building design, a sign, a painting, a photograph, a book, even just a letter are all things that are copyrighted, and a photograph that is substantially nothing other than a copy is a violation of copyright.
A sign might be a good example to use. If all that is in the photograph is the text and graphics on a sign, it is a violation. If instead the sign is just incidental to a picture of the street, there is no violation. Somewhere in between is a not so distinct line. If the picture shows the structure that holds the sign up, and that is clearly significant to the art of the picture, it's okay. If the structure is incidental to the picture, it probably is not okay! And regardless of if being a copyright violation, if "fair use" applies that is an exemption. An example of that would be that if you write an entry on your personal blog, that is in no way commercial, about how you hate big signs, and you take a picture of someone's big sign to illustrate the article, it is probably a copyright violation if you say nothing at all about that particular sign in the article. If the sign is described in the text as an example of what you are complaining about, it's probably "editorial use" and is covered under fair use. (Just be aware that winning the case in court will probably cost everything ou own!)
Whatever it is you are going to do, 1) be careful, and 2) consult with an IP attorney.
I guess a little more info would help- I have/am trying to get a alaskan hunting/wildlife video made. I was just on a back pack hunt with a inlaw. another guy was invited along that has the same idea's(i did not know that at the time). after this trip, he posted a movie of my inlaws hunt & us too on u-tube. we did not give any concent-written or verbal. I was told from many people to get my inlaw to sign a video/phot/audio release to me wich he did.was this the right thing to do? does this other guy have the legal right to post said trip/hunt with out concent?Is there an attorney that would be worth talking with? Am I in the wrong??
I have since talked with said other guy about what happened & we both expressed our thought on the trip. I believe it will work out fine.
Originally Posted by FullFreezer