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Legal Issues Copyright, releases, likeness rights, licenses, etc.
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Copyright Ethics

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  #11  
Old 01-05-2003, 10:58 AM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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Thanks Paul, that's good advice. I guess that the copyright is only retained by the original photographer, or is it passed on to his family after death? But without a recognizable signature it will be almost impossible to determine who the photographer was. It can get kind of sticky.

I am working on a portrait of my Grandmother and her 2 sisters that was taken 101 years ago. It was obviously taken by a photographer but is unsigned. If the owner of the photo doesn't know who the photographer was I can assume that further investigation will be unproductive?
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  #12  
Old 01-05-2003, 11:14 AM
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There is a time limit for copyright protection. It's been a while since I read about it, but for some reason, 70 years sticks in my head. There are numerous photographs that were made by people who couldn't care less about copyrights, and others who are impossible to identify. I think you would be on safe ground if a reasonable effort was made to identify the photographer. That could be as simple as having an old photo, and looking for any copyright information on it. If none exists, and you have no idea who the photographer was, it should be safe to assume there won't be a problem.

Paul said "The PHOTOGRAPHER retains the copywrite on the photo reguardless of weather or not there is a signature on the photo." I'm not disputing that, because as was stated in another thread, the photo carries copyright protection when a person makes the shot, and that is correct. But I wonder if the photographer was working for a studio, such as Olin Mills, would the copyright belong to the photographer, or Olin Mills? My guess would be Olin Mills.

Ed
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  #13  
Old 01-05-2003, 03:27 PM
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Paul Rupp Paul Rupp is offline
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If the Photographer works for a studio, he/she has most likely signed over any right to the copywrite of photos he/she takes while on the job.

If the photographer has an estate, the copywrite then goes to the estate after they pass away.

Copywrites are a very stick business. If you make a "reasonable" attempt to find the photographer, or the company that they worked for, then you should be ok.

As Ed stated, some of the old shots were taken by people that didn't care about a copywrite much less knew what it was. They were just happy to get paid to take your picture.

HTH

Paul
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  #14  
Old 01-05-2003, 03:55 PM
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Thanks Ed & Paul, this tells me what I need to know. I wanted to be sure I was doing the right thing. I went to the Olan Mills web site to have a look. They offer a copyright release for $10.00 which should be easy to pass along to the client as part of the fee for doing the job.
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  #15  
Old 01-07-2003, 10:07 AM
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Paul Rupp Paul Rupp is offline
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I had to get a release from Owen Mills onve for a reprint of my parents. The release I received was a blanket release that could be used with ANY Owen Mills shot. I kept it, as it stated that they release any Owen Mills shots that I have.

I contacted them through e-mail about the release and was told that any image I have of there's was covered by this release.

I don't know if they still do that. Read it carefully when you get it.

Paul
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  #16  
Old 01-07-2003, 05:22 PM
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Well that's even better. I tried to get the release from their web site but failed. The shopping cart must have been having problems because every time I tried to select it it never showed up in my cart. I'll either try again later or cal them. Thanks for the info Paul.
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