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View Full Version : copyright release- how much do i charge?


my2dramaqueens
28th of January 2005 (Fri), 18:03
Im taking some portrait and lifestyle shots of a couple friend of mine to be placed in a organizational magazine they belong to. I am being paid for the shoot but the orginization would like me to waive my copyright. I am going to give them about 10 prints. She said she would pay for the release. How much should I charge for something like that?


thanks

robertwgross
28th of January 2005 (Fri), 19:00
In general, you do not want to waive your copyright. That would give the company free and complete right to the photos. You might do that, but only for a big price.

You will, however, offer them a usage fee deal. That means that you retain the copyright, but they get to use it for X, Y, or Z for a specified fee. For example, if they use it for a quarter page in a 100,000 subscriber magazine, that means one thing. If they use it for a cover on a 500,000 subscriber magazine, that means something different. If the magazine claims that they are just a start-up, and they don't have any budget, then don't believe it for an instant.

---Bob Gross---

leony
30th of January 2005 (Sun), 00:16
The editors like many pictures. They like FREE ones the most.

For the magazine, paying you little is just a way to cut costs. Charge a fair amount.
Best of all, negotiate a release where magazine would get rights to publish for say 6 months... then if they want to publish again, they have to come back to you for permission...

For portraits, etc. you can always tell them that you do not wish to give away the copyright "just in case you decide to publish a book later in life."
Just because they ask for it, you do not need to give it to them - you can refuse.

For more info see: http://editorialphoto.com/default.asp

IndyJeff
31st of January 2005 (Mon), 07:09
Im taking some portrait and lifestyle shots of a couple friend of mine to be placed in a organizational magazine they belong to. I am being paid for the shoot but the orginization would like me to waive my copyright. I am going to give them about 10 prints. She said she would pay for the release. How much should I charge for something like that?


thanks


I have a couple of questions here.
1. They are paying you to do the shoot and in return your providing them with 10 prints which may be used in an organizational magazine. Haven't you already granted them permission to use the photos for the magazine and been paid for that use?
2. They want you waive your copyright? Is there another use for which they would like to use the photos?

I would ask what they are going to use the photos for, besides the magazine. I would agree to waive the copyright for a fee but, first I want to know what they plan on doing with the photos. Base your CR release upon those possible future uses. Don't give them a price once you find out what they plan on doing with the photos. Simply say that you will have to figure a price and get back with them tomorrow. Figure a price for each use they plan on using them for and double it. Get a total and add 50%.
When you give them the price and they say that is too much, explain that you will gladly reduce the price if they want to price it on a per use basis but, to give up the rights to the photos is asking you to give up future earnings off your work. Be very agreeable to granting other uses for a fee based upon industry standards.

As a general rule of thumb you don't want to give up the CR to any of your work but, there are times when that can be a deal buster. I have only given up my CR once and that was when I shot for a organization here in Indy. They would bring people in and put them in race trucks at IRP and they would have 10 laps of warm ups and then each group of 8 would have a 10 lap race. The winners each got a plaque. Part of the package was that each person got a photo of them on the track and in the truck. The print pricing was figured in to the package deal. I was paid a flat fee for the day, a pretty good one too, plus film expenses.
The corporation that was paying for the people to do this contacted me about getting the winners shots and a few of the other shots for their in house newsletter. This is a national company too. I inquired as to how many copies would be made and said I would get back with them on a price. The gal I was dealing with made me an offer right there. I said I would get back with her later that day. When I did a price check, she had offered me the top end of pricing I had looked at. I called her back and accepted her offer. Then she hit me with what I thought was going to be a deal buster, they wanted the negs. I didn't want to do that but, she explained that the dept that produced the newsletter said the negs would be so much easier to use to make the newsletter they wouldn't want to do it from prints. As it ended up we negotiated a price for the negs which if I remember correctly was about $200 for 4 rolls of film. Cheap but, I had been paid for taking the photos plus film costs, paid for the use in their newsletter and the $200 was just extra. I really weighted the chances I had of them ever using the photos again and my thinking was that future uses would be slim, so I sold the negs. I ended up making about $1200 for the day maybe a little more so giving up the rights made selling them a little easier.
I look back and still have a problem with selling the negs but, I figured if I didn't I would have lost out on the money for the newsletter and chances were without the negs the deal would have fell thru. You have to weigh the chances of them using the photos again against the chances that not giving up the rights may cost you the deal altogether. I would also ask that a photo credit for you be given on any uses in the future.

Bruce Hamilton
31st of January 2005 (Mon), 10:34
Then she hit me with what I thought was going to be a deal buster, they wanted the negs. I didn't want to do that but, she explained that the dept that produced the newsletter said the negs would be so much easier to use to make the newsletter they wouldn't want to do it from prints.

I think I would've stipulated in my contract that the negatives were being provided solely for the purpose of producing the newsletter, and were to be returned to me immediately after production of said newsletter. They probably made far more off those negs than they paid you.

IndyJeff
31st of January 2005 (Mon), 10:46
Bruce I thought about that too but, there really wasn't any use for them after the newsletter that I could see. They may have printed some up to give to the people but I made money off the day.

That was the one and only time I ever sold negatives to a client.