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Thread: Photographer's Rights

  1. #1

    Default Photographer's Rights

    Would you surrender the negatives to an organisation or club after covering, say a school event, if there are no pre-agreements to "buy your rights" as photographers?

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    nope... unless there's a pre-arranged agreement. one good thing to practise though is to always remember to settle on the arrangement first before taking on the job/project, otherwise there might be bad blood. most photogs i know usually just hand over the negs/slides in the fear that they might lose the client, but a bit of preparation/forethought can usually avoid this kinda situation.

    just my 2 cents though...

  3. #3

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    Big no. Coz it wasnt pre-arranged deal.
    One-North Explorers
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    Default Re: Photographer's Rights

    Originally posted by mervlam
    Would you surrender the negatives to an organisation or club after covering, say a school event, if there are no pre-agreements to "buy your rights" as photographers?
    No way! Unless the sale (big $$) is contracted as part of the price structure then there is no way any client of mine is going to get access to the negs or chromes. After all selling the film is tantamount to giving your work away for free.
    The Ang Moh from Hell
    Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!

  5. #5

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    how about in competitions when they ask for the negatives of the pictures you submitted? [if you win one of the prizes]

    also, what are the considerations when the subject
    in your winning photo is someone you randomly
    photographed ...

    we sometimes take candid shots of people on the
    street, etc - anything to worry about?

    just wondering

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    Originally posted by Juvelyn
    how about in competitions when they ask for the negatives of the pictures you submitted? [if you win one of the prizes]
    that depends on the fine print of the competition regulations. in most cases, the photog retains the right to the photo as fair as i know, even if you win.

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    Originally posted by Juvelyn
    how about in competitions when they ask for the negatives of the pictures you submitted? [if you win one of the prizes]

    also, what are the considerations when the subject
    in your winning photo is someone you randomly
    photographed ...

    we sometimes take candid shots of people on the
    street, etc - anything to worry about?

    just wondering
    It depends on the terms of the competition as has been mentioned already. However the legality of surrendering of one's rights for a photograph is a complex issue and there are different legal interpretations from country to country based on local law and also the Berne Copyright Convention.

    Generally speaking however unless there is a contract signed by both parties and independently witnessed then you don't loose your rights to the shot as the photographer.

    As for street candids or shots without someones permission. This area is still problematic in many countries. In many countries it is now all but illegal to take someones photo without at least asking permission first and entering a shot in to a competition could be construed as a violation of their right to privacy if permission was not asked.

    However, amateur photographers don't have to face the problems that professionals do. I for example am obliged to ensure I have a model release for everyone that appears in a for sale shot of mine that is not a 'crowd' scene, which I interpret to be 5-6 or more people.

    It should be noted that press photography is covered by seperate laws in most countries and the press have far more leeway under the law that the average street photographer.

    So what does it mean, ask permission of the person you are taking a shot of! A bit of courtesy goes a long way and if you are shooting specifically for a competition a model release is a good idea.
    The Ang Moh from Hell
    Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!

  8. #8

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    thanks Ian

    I'd love to ask for permission ...
    don't know whether you've noticed ...
    but Singaporeans are hostile,
    snappy and unfriendly!!!!!

    hee

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    Originally posted by Ian
    As for street candids or shots without someones permission. This area is still problematic in many countries. In many countries it is now all but illegal to take someones photo without at least asking permission first and entering a shot in to a competition could be construed as a violation of their right to privacy if permission was not asked.
    one example to note is the Shriro Hasselblad xpan wedding photo contest. it clearly states that the photographe must have the consent and permission of the wedded couple to enter the photo in the contest. i think if the photog wins and the judges find that the winner doesn't have permission, the entry is rendered null and void immediately.

  10. #10

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    Then, is it legal if after selling your photographs to an organization\person, you sell it again, to another person?

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    Originally posted by Necroist
    Then, is it legal if after selling your photographs to an organization\person, you sell it again, to another person?
    that depends on what you mean by "selling your photos"... depends on the agreement and fine print. you selling them the negatives, copyright or just a print? also, which media issit for? online or print or just for their annual report? if it's like stock photos, there's no restrictions on re-selling to another party.

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    So as long as the agreement mentions that your shots will be for their exclusive usage and you cannot barter or use it for other purposes, it's alrite? That means you literally give up all rights to your own work?Can you insert another clause stating that they cannot use the same pics you took for that particuar event, for any other purpose unrelated to the specific event?
    We live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities. - Oscar Wilde

  13. #13

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    The reason why organisers ask for the negative is to try to ensure that you are the copyright owner of the image submitted. Sometimes also to enlarge the prints for exhibition.

    However if they do state that they will not return the negatives, most prob they are asking for copyrights to the image itself, so do read the fine prints as to whether you are still the copyright owner if you win a prize or whether the negative will be returned.



    Quote Originally Posted by Juvelyn
    how about in competitions when they ask for the negatives of the pictures you submitted? [if you win one of the prizes]

    also, what are the considerations when the subject
    in your winning photo is someone you randomly
    photographed ...

    we sometimes take candid shots of people on the
    street, etc - anything to worry about?

    just wondering

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Necroist
    Then, is it legal if after selling your photographs to an organization\person, you sell it again, to another person?
    Reselling images to multiple purchases is fine, and it's legal, providing you own copyright to the image and providing you don't contravene any terms of sale to other clients.
    The Ang Moh from Hell
    Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by mervlam
    Would you surrender the negatives to an organisation or club after covering, say a school event, if there are no pre-agreements to "buy your rights" as photographers?
    It all depends..

    You can probably "surrender" your negatives but still maintain "ownership" of the work (i.e. here are the negs but if you are to use the negs for xyz pls remember that you need permission from me - you can always put it in an e-mail anyway and make it part of the terms of handing over the negs - read further down though for a more positive approach)..

    Equally importantly though is the terms under which you were allowed to take photos in the first place (I pressume that this was some sort of exclusive event as it would be very strange to be asked to surrender photos of a public event such as a lion dance in a hawker center).

    Even if the terms were not spelled out, why not try to make the situation to work in your favour and hand over the negs in good terms so that you can photograph the event again and maybe next time state clearly the terms - you could ask for some compensation for the film, development costs, printing costs etc.

    At the end of the day, you will be better off when someone knows that you are good at taking photos (not everyone who has a camera takes nice photos ), when someone knows that they can work things out with you (not every good photographer is a good businessman or team player), rather than having a set of negs at home that probably you will never see again - personally I find most event photos of high "value" only to those involved in the events! I.e. Try to create a win-win situation rather than a loss-loss one.

    -- Marios

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    Quote Originally Posted by Juvelyn
    thanks Ian

    I'd love to ask for permission ...
    don't know whether you've noticed ...
    but Singaporeans are hostile,
    snappy and unfriendly!!!!!

    hee
    Never noticed that to be honest. Then again I'm an Ang Moh (and one from hell to boot) so I guess I just intimidate snappy SG types

    In all seriousness, if you approach the organisers, preferably before the event and ideally at least a week before the event then you will be surprised at how much co-operation you can get. Being a professional photographer helps in such situations, but even amateurs can get a surprising amount of assistance if they take the time and make the effort to deal with the ogranisers in a professional and courteous manner.
    The Ang Moh from Hell
    Professional Photography - many are called, few are chosen!

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