Releases needed for Events Posted on ExposureManager, SmugMug, etc.?

Started Apr 17, 2010 | Discussions thread
jcdill
New MemberPosts: 4
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Re: Releases needed for Events Posted on ExposureManager, SmugMug, etc.?
In reply to Wayne B., Apr 20, 2010

A model release is needed when you use someone's image to advertise something else . E.g. when you want to use a photo to advertise skin-care products, or baby food, or to sell cars, or to promote a grocery store or airline. If you want to sell the photo for stock, you need a model release.

There is a gray area about if a release is needed if you put the photo in the "portfolio" section of a website (or printed and displayed at events or in your studio, etc.). At this point are you using the photo to promote yourself? I don't know of any cases where a model has successfully sued over this type of use. Most photographers ask/get permission before using a photo in their portfolio or studio gallery, to avoid any potential problems in this area.

However, I know one very successful horse show photographer who never asked for permission. Instead, he picked his best shots from the previous day and printed them up as 16x20 prints and hung them in his booth the following day. The kids all crowded around each morning to see if they "made the wall" and if they did, Mom or Dad almost always bought the framed print. It was a very successful sales technique!

A model release is NOT needed when the photo is NOT being used to promote something else. I don't know of any event photographers who get model releases, except/unless they want to use the photos for stock or advertising. Some photographers try to get model releases so that they can offer the photos for stock, but most don't bother.

Occasionally you get a parent who fusses that you will be putting photos of their kid online without their permission. They do NOT have a right to demand that you don't take photos of their kid (at a public event), or that you don't put them online. However, you will probably find it easier to just tell them "fine - I won't take any photos of your kid!", but when the other kids are all ooohing and aaahing over your photos their kid will probably feel quite left out. You may even get an email from the kid asking where their photos are.

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