Photographic rights...

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by corrupted, Aug 24, 2006.

  1. corrupted

    corrupted Guest

    I'm looking for a legal answer here... not just what seems right (as we all know, those can be different).

    If a photographer were to go to a band's gig without being asked there by the band, and not under any legal agreement with the band... would the photographs that this person took be legally owned by the band or the photographer?

    It seems right to me that although the band members are the subject of the photographs, the photographer owns the rights to the images, and the band cannot distribute them without his consent. Is that true?

    Reason being, we were recently photographed by a "professional" photographer at a gig, and the images were posted on the individual's personal website. We like a few of them, and so we downloaded the high-resolution versions of them. Then we were told that we can't use them without buying them.

    I can see both sides of this one, but it would be nice if there was a clear line.

    Anyone care to enlighten me? Thanks!

    EDIT: What would intend to do with these is put them on our website as general band photos. We would have no problem giving full credit to the photographer, and we're not trying to profit from them specifically.
  2. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    Feb 9, 2005
    South Florida
    Home Page:
    The photographs would be owned by the photographer.

    However, if the event prohibited such recording devices like cameras, then the photographer would still own the illegally obtained photographs, but could be prosecuted if they were used.

    In your situation, the pictures are his. You might want to try and strike up a partnership with him. See if you can get him to let you use a couple for free or reduced price and in return promote his services. You could recommend him to other bands, promote him on your website which would hopefully bring him some additional revenue.
  3. corrupted

    corrupted Guest

    Point taken, thanks for the response. I personally don't care either way, but in case it came up, I wanted to have an idea of the situation.

    It was a public event as far as I know, nothing would have been prohibited.

    On a similar note, although the photographer owns the images, can he profit from them without our consent?
  4. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Mar 18, 2001
    Sunny & warm NC
    Home Page:
    That's a tough call... He owns the image, you (collectively) own the face.

    If you are asking if he can sell the image, yes AND no.

    He can sell the image to a news source and you have no say so whatsover. He cannot sell/distribute the image as "art" without your written consent/contract... That is, provided that you (collectively) are a copywrited/registered business entity...

    If not, it becomes a fair use civil case... NASTY.

  5. corrupted

    corrupted Guest

    We're not upset so I'm not worried about anything going "badly", but I just wanted to make sure that if it came up, I knew what the hell it was all about.

  6. Sanity Inn

    Sanity Inn Guest

    We all have friends with some decent cameras, i'd have one follow you around, snap a whole lot of pics, and own them all without worrying about paying someone else,,

    Just a thought

  7. DIGIT

    DIGIT Guest

    Yes, the clarification is: the photographers owns the data files (or film) because their are his and were his when he took the photos.

    The PUBLISHING/EXPLOITATION RIGHTS of such photos are a different matter, as pointed out and that would require expressed, written permission.

    Photos taken without persmission (and when such activity is expressively forbidden) are the equivalent of a bootleg recording. Some people try to use them but, if/when they get caught they may/will have to suffer the consequences of whatever legal action may be taken against them.

Share This Page