View Full Version : Legal question regarding selling pictures of sports events...

19th of February 2006 (Sun), 16:53
I have a legal question I hope you can help me with, I have taken pictures at quite a few sporting events and want to start selling my pictures as prints etc, Do i have to get permission from the people in the photograph, the football club, no one or both? Thanks all!

19th of February 2006 (Sun), 17:05
If you read the small print you'll probably find that the selling of images of sporting events (of profit making oranisations) for gain will require you to get some form of commercial license from the organisers. For high profile events these are

a) hard (impossible?) to get
b) very expensive

Shooting for the media is a different matter but you will still need accreditation from a recognised publication at all high profile (newsworthy) events.

19th of February 2006 (Sun), 17:09
I shoot sports at the local level for both the yearbook and the newspaper. I'm preparing to create password protected galleries on Smugmug for the parents, so they can purchase pictures of their kids. None of them seem to have a problem with that since only they will have access to the galleries.
If you're talking about selling pics from the NFL or NBA, you can't do so for personal gain unless, as Dave said, you have media accreditation.

21st of February 2006 (Tue), 02:46
I am the official photographer for a local low league football (soccer) team so its not quite top league stuff or but its higher than childrens football... I also freelance for the local paper and cover other local sporting events (Mostly soccer)... I wonder where i stand with that sort of level....

22nd of February 2006 (Wed), 20:59
If you're the official photographer for the league, check the language of your agreement (you do have a written agreement, don't you?). Likewise, with the local paper, what's the agreement? Do you keep rights to the photos they don't use? Are you selling (planning to sell) to the subjects/their families, or to non-involved parties or commercial interests? If the latter, definitely get releases. You're the one who'd get sued. If the former, you might get by, unless someone thinks they can get the pics for free by raising a fuss.

23rd of February 2006 (Thu), 18:15

If you casually capture some of the racers say at Brands Hatch Circuit then go around the paddock and flog them, you'd best not get caught! It's in thier small print. But some people have done it for years. I'm sure it's nothing major.

However selling to mags, other publications and you haven't got Brands H permission, then i think you'd best pop to the local Citizens Advice Bureau :(