Can I promote my freelance business using video I created at previous employer?

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    • #97202
      Avatarerau474
      Member

      Hello all!

      I recently broke free of the 9-5 grind and I'm hustling as a freelance videographer/photographer/designer/mow your lawn/make you coffee/fill in the blank. Anyway, I want to promote my best video work but most of it was done at a previous employer, a small firm in my hometown. I was the sole producer/shooter/editor for this company and I used my own gear to shoot it, although I don't know if that makes a difference. My question is whether I can post these videos/photos to social media and my online portfolio to promote my freelance business. I don't think my old employer would care since I left on good terms, but I really don't want any legal trouble. Any insights or experience with this would be much appreciated. Thanks!

    • #278582
      AvatarJackWolcott
      Participant

      I'm not an attorney. That said, according to my reading of the U.S. Copyright law — https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ09.pdf — you created what is known as a "work for hire." As such, the copyright belongs to your employer unless you and he agreed in writing to the contrary. So the answer would be "no," you don't have the right to use the material you worked on.

      I would speak with the former employer to see if it's o.k. with him for you to use the material. Point out that you will give credit to his company in your reel and that he will be getting what amounts to free advertising. Let him see the reel before your post it anywhere so he can see how good you've made him and his business look and so he can see there is no proprietary information being disclosed. If it were me, I would go on camera at the beginning of the reel and say "I'm Joe Smith and much of what you're about to see was developed while I was employed for five years as videographer and editor at the Bob's Your Uncle tractor plant in Spider's Breath, Wyoming."

    • #278583
      Avatarpaulears
      Participant

      I Agree with jack – the same thing applies in the UK too – anything produced here in the course of your employment belongs to your employer. It's actually normally in everyone's contract of employment.

    • #278590
      Avatardavepd2
      Member

      I agree with both Jack and Paul, but maybe you can create a demo reel using clips from your previous work to help showcase your talents on your website. So, instead of posting the final work in its entirety, create a video of clips to show what you can do.

    • #282726
      Avatarskeppla22
      Member

      That's a very fine line and would also depend on what you had filmed. What type of business was it? Was it a video company that employed you to specifically film things for them? If so, your work is their property. Or was it a non-film industry business where you randomly filmed things on your own similar to if you took random pictures for fun? Just to be safe, since you left on good terms, ask them if it's ok to use your work for your film reel. They shouldn't mind, but make sure to get it in writing! That's very important.

    • #283712
      AvatarJCTullo
      Blocked

      If I am working for hire on something I am pleased with, enough to put it on my reel or web site, I will ask the client in advance for permission to do so.  Of course, I will already know if it is sensitive information, or if they are a particularly private ot legalistic company, in which case, I don't even approach them. I do give them a "plug" when I post their video, so I am not claiming it as my own.  Most clients are flattered and delighted to have an additional outlet for their content.

    • #72019215
      jack-cooppperrjack-cooppperr
      Participant

      Hello!
      I need to write a business essay for a college whose purpose is to test the feasibility of opening a business. What criteria should be used when choosing a niche for business development from scratch? First of all, it is necessary to build on the knowledge and experience you personally have, or at least your interests.
      Please advise me some educational services like this one https://answershark.com/business.html, where I can order my paper.
      Thank you in advance.

    • #72019217
      Avatarannnyr34
      Participant

      And which company would you like to open?

      • #72019218
        jack-cooppperrjack-cooppperr
        Participant

        I do not know yet

    • #72023765
      roseyshere1roseyshere1
      Participant

      Making a clip is a good idea. It’s some completely new content based on something you’ve done. I’d also recommend this article since you’re promoting, it might help.

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