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Model Release

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Old 05-07-2004, 11:20 AM
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kiska kiska is offline
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Model Release

I majored in journalism many years ago. If I remember correctly, if a person is in a public place; on the street, at a sporting event; and their picture is taken, that picture can be used in a newspaper WITHOUT a model release. The permission is implied by the act of being in a public place.
My question: with the above circumstances, may a photographer use those pics for OTHER than news reporting?? Say, in exhibitions or the web.

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Old 05-07-2004, 12:16 PM
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Leah Leah is offline
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Obviously the exact rules vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but as I understand it the general principle is that context is everything. You can't use the picture in any context that might in any way reflect "badly" on the person portrayed -- or at least, they can object and potentially sue you if you do. An example often quoted is that of using a portrait shot on a poster for haemorrhoid cream, but potentially it can be more subtle than that - down to careful consideration of captions, what other pictures you display it with, what the subtext of the photograph might be considered to be, etc., etc. That means it's always safest to get a model release just so that everything is clear from the word go. If someone objects to your displaying his or her photo you can run up a lot of legal bills even if you turn out to be in the right. Most stock photo agencies insist on a model release before they'll take a picture into stock.
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Old 05-07-2004, 02:07 PM
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Chip Hildreth Chip Hildreth is offline
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I agree with Leah, it's all about context. There are three general areas where using a person's recognizable image without their written permission can get you sued...
- Advertising, promotion or trade - basically profit creation
- Libelous or defaming context - The hemorrhoid poster thing
- Invasion of privacy - Shooting someone in a hospital or or on private property where the Fourth Ammendment applies and personal privacy can be assumed.... (You're talking about in the US, right? I didn't actually note where you are.)

You can be sued for using someone's image even if you HAVE a model release if the usage is out the release's context. I would go with the golden rule, be nice, profit from someone else only with their permission and use a person's image only in a way that you would allow your own image to be used.

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Old 02-20-2006, 08:26 AM
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kiska kiska is offline
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PROPERTY release

I understand the model release. I've googled Property release and can't get a clear definition. What about houses, buildings, businesses etc. that are on public streets. If used 'properly', is a release necessary??
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Old 02-20-2006, 08:35 AM
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chrishoggy chrishoggy is offline
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I think you will find that Buildings are on Private land, that is viewable from a public area. They therefor cannot be used without building/land owners permission
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