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Questions about law/legal issues affecting photographers

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

54
votes
8answers
3k views

Is watermarking worth it?

I've recently become aware that one of my photos has been used by a national newspaper beyond its licensing terms (cc-by-sa-2.5, used without the required credit), and whilst I can pursue them for ...
32
votes
8answers
6k views

Can I publish photos taken in public legally?

Who actually owns a photo that is taken in a public place?
31
votes
6answers
13k views

How do I copyright my photographs?

What exactly, if anything, do I need to do in order to copyright my photographs? I have done some research into this topic and find a wide range of answers. Some articles on the web are stating that ...
30
votes
12answers
3k views

Why are tripods forbidden in some public spaces and how to deal with it?

Yesterday, I've been to the Britomart train station in Auckland, New Zealand, to take some pictures of that place. To do so, I carried my tripod with me. Aware of the fact, that some places don't ...
27
votes
5answers
969 views

What's a concise “I'm not dangerous” phrase for a business card?

Not being a street photographer, I find myself intimidated by onlookers when shooting in public. Given that and an increasingly hostile government attitude toward photographers, I'm thinking a ...
25
votes
8answers
6k views

How to attribute Flickr Creative Commons photos online?

I found some nice images on Flickr using the advanced image search to show only those that are creative commons licensed; I want to use the images in a commercial website I am building. One of the ...
22
votes
4answers
3k views

What steps should I take if my photo is used without permission?

I like contributing to community groups with my photos, such as to Flickr photopools, and some more local groups. I do it mainly for feedback and improvements, and, quite honestly, I like it when ...
21
votes
7answers
3k views

If I paid for photography am I entitled to raw images?

If I paid for photographs on my wedding and the photographer has supplied me only with low res files (200 kb approx for all) and says she is unable to save them edited in high res, am I entitled to ...
16
votes
7answers
3k views

How to respond to requests to commercially use one's photos without compensation?

I am an amateur photographer and every now and then, I get an email along these lines: Hi there, I really like your photo of X [LINK] and would like to use it in my/our magazine/brochure/website. ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

What legal restrictions to photography are there in European countries?

I'm from Ukraine, and I know where I can shoot here and when. I had few trips to USA where I know it's very difficult to shoot on the street, without encroaching on someone else's private life. I ...
16
votes
2answers
747 views

Is a model release needed for all commercial photo sales?

I've seen variants of this question covered on many sites but I can't find an answer specific to fine art sales. I know that I need a model release if my picture will be used as stock photography ...
15
votes
5answers
883 views

What is the philosophical justification generally accepted by photographers on why they should be able to profit privately over public property?

Say someone takes a picture of Lord Nelson's statue in Trafalgar Square at dusk, and sells on his website for profit. Is it not arguable that people would not buy it if it weren't a statue of a ...
15
votes
8answers
9k views

If my photo is “copied” through a painting, is that a legal?

Are both scenarios legal? I own a photo, and someone painted a replica (using canvas and paints) and sold prints. Someone altered it using Photoshop to look like a painting and sold prints. Do I ...
14
votes
2answers
4k views

If someone makes a picture of me, who owns the right to it?

Say, someone snaps a picture of me. Do I own the rights to it? Or is it the photographer? My intent is to find out for U.S. but a plethora of in-depth answers is very helpful!
14
votes
2answers
326 views

What is “Fair Use” (US Copyright Law)

Sometimes one will hear of a photo being reprinted, redistributed, or otherwise used without specifically being licensed or having permission granted. Often the defense is called "fair use". What ...
14
votes
2answers
391 views

What are good resources for Photographer's Rights around the world?

As a photographer, I take a lot of pictures around the world. In the US, the rights for photographers are pretty clear cut, although harassment and bullying occur at the hands of security and law ...
14
votes
3answers
346 views

Resources for persuading that photography is not a suspicious activity

I am looking for web resources to help persuade someone that photography is not a suspicious activity and photographers should not be considered a threat. Right now, the discussion is pretty cordial ...
13
votes
3answers
4k views

Laws regarding photos taken from airplane?

What are the laws for photos taken during a commercial flight? Just shooting some clouds outside the window and maybe a small city picture after takeoff. Anything I need to know? Apart from what's ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

What are the copyright issues when selling photos of public art?

I know that it is illegal to take a photo of another photo, but does anybody know what the legal situation of selling a photo that includes a sculpture that it is in a public place? Something like: ...
12
votes
3answers
559 views

Do you need photo permission for landscape work you/your landscape company has done?

We own a landscape company and we wanted to use photos of landscape jobs we've installed and photos of gardens we have planted. Do we need permission to post these photos we've taken on our website?
12
votes
3answers
1k views

How can you find out if a building falls under trademark rules?

A follow up to a comment in this question; "However, if you take a picture of a building which falls under trademark rules, then you would face problems. A very few buildings fall into this ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

I just saw my children in a photograph on the wall of a chain restaurant. What rights do I have to protect their image?

A friend alerted me she saw my children in a photograph hung in a chain restaurant. Although the picture was taken at a public event, I never gave permission for anyone to sell the image of my ...
12
votes
3answers
651 views

If I use a public domain image can I own the copyright to the resulting artwork?

I was thinking of using public domain images as backgrounds to my photos. Do I still technically "own" the resulting work?
11
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I get rights to pictures someone has taken of me?

A photographer friend has agreed to take some sexy pictures of me. I trust him, but I don't want them to somehow wind up all over the internet. How do we transfer rights of the photos to me?
11
votes
6answers
1k views

What are some photography contract gotchas or must-haves?

When preparing a photography contract, what should be included? I'm sure the experienced shooters have examples of things that they always include in a contract or things that they omitted but later ...
11
votes
8answers
6k views

Is it legal for me to take pictures of commercial/military aircraft taking off and landing?

NOTE: I'm in the United States so for me this question is mostly about 'is it legal' in the US... I often drive down to one of the access roads outside the fence line of the international airport in ...
11
votes
6answers
958 views

How do I correctly provide Creative Commons attribution on a digital print?

I'm using a photo I found on Flickr that is licensed with the Creative Commons non-commercial attribution license. I'm modifying this photo and then will be giving it as a present to a friend. Does ...
11
votes
2answers
875 views

Exclusivity Use Clause?

I'm writing up a small generic contract (1-2 pages at most) and I have a check box next to each clause so they may be included on a per contract basis and was wondering if I need to include an ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it legal to use images found on the internet?

I realise that I am unable to just use an image willy nilly from the internet, but if an image is uploaded to a site like deviant art, am I able to use it on my site (not claiming it as my own, but as ...
10
votes
4answers
391 views

What resources can you suggest to help me write contracts?

I realize the best resource is a lawyer, but aside from that. How did you write your contracts for your photography business? Are there resources out there to help me write my own contracts and ...
10
votes
2answers
340 views

Are photo release forms required for old company-event photos?

Can I publish old company event photos (for a Company book that includes "Our History") without all the employees signing release forms? I'm having trouble even finding/contacting the old employees ...
9
votes
3answers
414 views

What are the most important issues to cover in a portrait photo contract?

I am planning on doing some photo sessions for friends and want to do it right. I want to have a contract, but I'm not sure what all I need to include. What are the most important issues to cover in ...
9
votes
2answers
481 views

Is it legal for me to sell a photo taken from within a store without the store's permission?

I shot some photos of a store's interior for a blog that was highlighting that particular store. Is it legal for me to sell prints of the interior of that store? The photo just includes chocolate in a ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Are photo releases necessary when using event photos in my portfolio?

Do I need to get photo releases from people in the images I capture at public events? For example, do I need photo releases from all wedding guests pictured in order to use my photos for ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Celebrity photographies copyrights

I'm creating a international portal about celebrities. Where from can I get photos of celebrities without breaking copyright law? Is there a difference between publishing a photo of celebrity and ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the dangers of doing photography on a “Work for Hire” contract?

I've heard that if one is a professional photographer that it's bad to perform work on a "work for hire" contract. Why is this situation unfavorable to the photographer?
8
votes
4answers
603 views

Street Photography: Can you take pictures on the street and enter them in contests?

Do you need the permissions from the subjects? Specially if there is money to be made.
8
votes
3answers
559 views

Still-life reconstruction considered plagiarism?

I am really bad at still lifes. That is, I never even attempted making one. So I decided to try and make a photo of freshly baked bread. I stumbled across a few amazing shots on the Internet which I ...
8
votes
5answers
4k views

Can I publish (online) a photo I took of someone else's house?

I have a collection of photos that I have taken while touring through display homes that were part of a home-design show. I want to publish the photos online to share with others the architectural ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Who owns the copyright of a picture taken of my construction work?

Here's the scenario: I work for a company that does some home improvement work. An architect designed the house, we did the work. I found pictures of that work online, contacted the architect and ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

What are the obligations to a client (give them raw photos, etc?)

I have shot an event (a pool party) for a client for free as a first test so that if that worked out we would continue working together. All that was communicated was that I cannot publish photos ...
7
votes
4answers
667 views

How to prevent commercial use of a photo?

I got a request from a guy who'd like to use this image of mine for a print. I am normally open to non-commercial (simple attribution is okay) usage of my photos. So, I wrote "Drop me a flickr mail or ...
7
votes
2answers
695 views

Hand painted Coca-Cola logo on old garage

I have an image of an old garage with a hand-painted Coca-Cola logo on an exterior wall. Do I need a release from Coke to sell copies of this image?
7
votes
3answers
325 views

Does EzPrints.com Terms of Use try to grab my copyrights?

I generally don't like legal questions, however in this case my choice is either to accept an agreement or move on to a different print service, and I'll gladly do the latter if necessary. I was ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I photograph people publicly, in the USA, without their consent?

If I am out in a public place, is it legal for me to take pictures of other people? What am I allowed to do with these photos? Can I post them online or print them out? Are there different rules for ...
7
votes
3answers
976 views

Do I need a written model release to enter a street portrait in a competition?

I've taken a street portrait photo (here) that I'd like to enter in a competition (the Sony World Photo Awards). I asked the man in the shop if I could take his photo, and he was more than happy for ...
6
votes
6answers
998 views

Does street photography including children introduce any specific concern?

If one were to take a similar path as Henri Cartier-Bresson in shooting candid street photography today, should they be concerned about laws or other realistic norms of today? I am wondering ...
6
votes
3answers
491 views

Is modifying an animal photo for use as an avatar icon within fair use?

I found an animal photo I'd like to use as an avatar. I only want to use the head of the animal and would retouch it a bit. Is this considered as fair use?
6
votes
6answers
483 views

Can photographs from a client shoot, but not accepted by them, be used for stock photography?

I have a number of photographs from a recent client shoot that they don't wish to use. Could these be sold by myself as stock photography? For that matter, would it be considered to be ethical to do ...
6
votes
2answers
358 views

Why do event organisers have the right to restrict the activities of photographers?

Many public events such as sports, concerts, etc have restrictive policies that limit the ability of the audience to take photographs. These policies can vary from an outright ban to a ban on the use ...