Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Specialty Topics › Legal Issues › Video for non-profits and college › First rule of video, audio
First rule of video, audio and photography – NEVER, EVER give away your rights. Grant people usage rights for specific time periods or projects. It doesn’t have to involve mega contracts – just emails. “I’m very pleased you’d like to use some of the video I shot for your XYZ project. If you need to use it again in the future, please let me know”.
For the college -“I understand you’d like to use some of the material I shot at the recent XYZ Event. As I’m building up my professional portfolio, I’d be prepared to give you permission to use it for promotional purposes for the period of three years for the sum of $X. If you’d like to provide me with a purchase order, I’ll get the material to you by return”.
This doesn’t involve any re-assignment of rights, you retain them and are licensing their usage. This works for me in the UK – I’d assume the US situation is similar. I do exactly the same with commissioned music – I retain all the rights and give them permissions. In the main, I never even re-use these, so could have happily have given them away. I just like to keep stuff, that’s all. All these fancy licensing types seem to be creeping in, but they always seem to be written to favour the other party? Obviously this system won’t please a national broadcaster or big movie company, but for smaller less aware clients, it works rather well for me.