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Model releases

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#1 cor


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Posted 04 December 2008 - 11:06 AM

Hi all, as we all know model releases are very important when you want to sell your images. We have had some requests of an image where we do not have a model release. So we have denied the request. But it got me thinking. The image is of some kids in the middle of the Banda Sea. Even if I wanted to, i could not communicate anything like a model release with them, or more importantly, their parents. It's too late now anyways.

So what do you all do in cases like this? Do you ask for model releases if you photograph natives in the water in some far away third world country? I've never thought about doing that before, but we probably missed a nice sell because of it. And then Julie asked me.. you think they got a model release for the Afghan Girl? Hmmm..probably not. And that image has been put on so many publications, items, shirts, etc. So how'd that work?

Stuff to ponder about.
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#2 Paul Kay

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 11:21 AM

Model releases are important if selling into advertising as by implication someone in an advert is endorsing the product - and might object, especially if they don't like the product. As far as I am aware, model releases are not relevant for editorial - I can't see what objection could be raised to be honest. This is from a UK perspective and there are caveats (permission may be needed if on private property foe example). I use 'none-professional' model release forms where necessary but in public places I don't bother - as I said this might be different elsewhere - in France for example which has I am told far stricter privacy laws than the UK. But in the UK anyone in a public place can be photographed with no problem - providing no laws (obstruction, etc.) are broken in so doing - other than this state of affairs has encouraged the paparazzi that is!

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#3 scorpio_fish



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Posted 05 December 2008 - 06:28 AM

There is no universal hard and fast rule. Ask the potential customer if they require you to have a model release. If they say no, then you could sell it to them, although you would want a hold harmless agreement, which they wouldn't want to give you. It goes on and on ad nauseum.

The Travel Channel requires releases for everybody that appears on your film, even if they no they don't really need it in all cases. Too many nuisance requests for payment. They require and provide releases in the language of the releasee. So, in your example, if the release was in English, they wouldn't accept it.

I think I still have access to the foreign language releases, but Bahasa was not one of them.
"Me, fail English?.........Unpossible!"