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08-29-2017, 07:01 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
Honestly, that phrasing only makes it worse. A client will be much happier with something that clearly delineates the photographer's rights than something so open ended and vague as to constitute a complete giveaway. There are still about 7 or 8 things that jump out as major problems with Vasyl's suggested wording.

Seriously, either pass, accept the terms as is, or pony up the money to hire a competent attorney. It's a trivial amount of work and should not cost much.
I am just thinking how many things you will be able to find when I watch a sunset and/or taking pictures of it....

My point was:
Everything is negotiable, you will not be beaten for your questions, so just put all your questions and areas on the table and come to an agreement with the client.
On the other hand, in such cases client usually proposes a basic or a template contract that exists in their database and usually they are open for additions and changes. If they accept what you propose they will put the right language.

They want to buy your product and your service, and none of you wants to deal with problems and future trials. So, just come to consensus and agree what is allowed and what is not and then find the right language.

08-30-2017, 10:38 AM - 1 Like   #17
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"Work for hire" contracts aren't evil as long as the payment reasonably covers the full revenue potential of the image (which might be quite limited).

It's natural that a company would want exclusive use of an image. The company that paid you to take the image doesn't want that image to be plastered all over the internet, used to advertise nausea medicine, or as a stock photo for a food poisoning article.

Yet it makes sense that you might ask for limited rights for including the image in your portfolio (without asking for the rights for reselling or granting others the rights to the image). Note that this last bit might prohibit use of social media because posting on most platforms is the granting of the right of the platform to republish the image. (Ask a lawyer!)

And even if the client won't budge, makes you sign an NDA that you ever took this image, swear secrecy, etc. you might still take the contract. If you take the existing contract as is you will gain experience, money, and a happy client even if you gain no promotional value from it. If you refuse the contract, you still don't get any images for your promotional portfolio and have lost the money, experience, and the client.
08-30-2017, 02:54 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by liukaitc Quote
Hello guys I need some help. I am relative new to agreement. I am about to do a food photography for a food company. They just send me a contract. But in the agreement there is something I heard people refer as The evil work for hire contract.
This is what the contract says
"This Finished Product will become the exclusive property of the Client upon acceptance of delivery. Upon acceptance of the photos by xxxxx, Photographer transfers any and all ownership rights exclusively to xxxxx and Photographer shall have no rights whatsoever upon such purpose."
"All photos are considered a “full buy-out” meaning the
photographer transfers all rights to xxxxx and has no claim to their ownership."

If I understand it correctly. I can not post any of the photo publicly for my own promotion. Right?
So how to change the agreement. how to alter the sentence. I am ok that the client have unlimited usage. They can use the photo for whatever purpose for lifelong time. I am fine. I also would not sell those photos to any other third parties. All I want is the right to use the photo for my own promotion purpose. Like post on social media, website, blog, etc. Thanks for any input.

Like others have said here, talk to a lawyer (specificly one who deals with pbotographers/in the field of) to word it correctly to what you want included/things changed to in the contract (it will save you time, money, and headaches down the road if something happens/for some reason a lawsuit comes up). Also if anything, add a large "Buyout" fee to it (so at least you'll be able to walk away from the deal and have some extra cash in your pocket to pay upcoming bills/etc.)
08-30-2017, 05:16 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
"Work for hire" contracts aren't evil as long as the payment reasonably covers the full revenue potential of the image (which might be quite limited).

It's natural that a company would want exclusive use of an image. The company that paid you to take the image doesn't want that image to be plastered all over the internet, used to advertise nausea medicine, or as a stock photo for a food poisoning article.

Yet it makes sense that you might ask for limited rights for including the image in your portfolio (without asking for the rights for reselling or granting others the rights to the image). Note that this last bit might prohibit use of social media because posting on most platforms is the granting of the right of the platform to republish the image. (Ask a lawyer!)

And even if the client won't budge, makes you sign an NDA that you ever took this image, swear secrecy, etc. you might still take the contract. If you take the existing contract as is you will gain experience, money, and a happy client even if you gain no promotional value from it. If you refuse the contract, you still don't get any images for your promotional portfolio and have lost the money, experience, and the client.
Totally agree on what photoptimist said.

If you're dealing with a large organization, you're dealing with their legal department and I can assure you, you will not change their mind regarding contract wording, or intent. Basically, when you work for a company, they own all right to any and all products you invent, develop, create, etc. After all, they paid you for such services. You can consult an attorney but I highly doubt you will get them to accept any changes to the contract wording, you will merely get caught-up in a merry-go-round with draft after draft that states all photos are the property of the company. Why not ask the client if you can use them as a reference and show your skills with works that you did on your own.


Last edited by onlineflyer; 08-30-2017 at 05:27 PM.
08-30-2017, 10:10 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
"Work for hire" contracts aren't evil as long as the payment reasonably covers the full revenue potential of the image (which might be quite limited). It's natural that a company would want exclusive use of an image. The company that paid you to take the image doesn't want that image to be plastered all over the internet, used to advertise nausea medicine, or as a stock photo for a food poisoning article. Yet it makes sense that you might ask for limited rights for including the image in your portfolio (without asking for the rights for reselling or granting others the rights to the image). Note that this last bit might prohibit use of social media because posting on most platforms is the granting of the right of the platform to republish the image. (Ask a lawyer!) And even if the client won't budge, makes you sign an NDA that you ever took this image, swear secrecy, etc. you might still take the contract. If you take the existing contract as is you will gain experience, money, and a happy client even if you gain no promotional value from it. If you refuse the contract, you still don't get any images for your promotional portfolio and have lost the money, experience, and the client.
I also concur, that's also the way I see it, also from professional experience with business contracts.
08-30-2017, 11:05 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
I also concur, that's also the way I see it, also from professional experience with business contracts.
He can bugger around trying to get them to change what is likely a long standing policy regarding their advertising photography, but I suspect at the first hint of friction from him, he will find that his phone calls stop getting returned and the company hires another photographer.

Professional photography is now just another commodity to be bought and sold as needed. There are very, very few photographers out there who are important enough to command a company to change policy, and I bet none of them post on Internet forums asking for legal advice.

Get over yourself, sign the contract as presented, do the job, hand over the files, and take the money. If you don't, there are literally thousands of guys with cameras who are willing and hungry enough to take your lunch money while you are frittering away an opportunity.

Photographers who want to build a portfolio do it on their dime, not that of a paying client.
09-13-2017, 07:26 PM   #22
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First point I don't shoot commercial work. However, I did listen to a workshop on marketing from Joel Grimes where he brought up this same topic. Basically he doesn't do it. "Work for hire" means you are an employee of the company with benefits. You are clearly not. Secondly, as a photographer you need to get back to them and establish how long they plan to use these pictures and you need to charge accordingly. If the want to buy the copyright they better pay you serious money. This is their legal department trying to pull a fast one on you. As a few others have said, talk to a lawyer. You should consider joining ASMP and they will have info to help you out. Talk to professional food photographers and get their advice. Commercial work is should not be a TFP.

Good luck!
09-13-2017, 08:18 PM - 1 Like   #23
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"Work for Hire" is a normal way of doing business. Most of the product photography I do is work for hire.
It is the nature of a contract to be negotiable. Tell them you would like to use the images in your portfolio. Maybe they say yes, maybe they say no.

09-14-2017, 05:22 AM   #24
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What's interesting about product photography is that it's the merger of TWO legally-protected creative works: 1) the photographer and their copyright; and 2) the company and their copyright/trademark/design patents for the product itself.

In the absence of an explicit agreement, either side could block the use of a product photograph especially for commercial purposes (e.g., the product maker's marketing or the photographer's marketing).

From there it's just a matter of negotiating who has what rights to distribute the image and in exchange for what payments. There's nothing intrinsically wrong with any kind of agreement as long as both sides have accepted it.
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