Contracts limiting photo use when shooting concerts.

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by amarine88, May 19, 2010.

  1. amarine88

    amarine88 TPF Noob!

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    I'm a pro/am photographer and am just starting to break into the music photography business. I work with a small stock photo agency that does some work with editorial material so I've been able to secure press passes for a variety of concerts. I get denied by most, but I am still able to get into enough to keep me busy and allow me to add to my portfolio while making a little side money.
    I've noticed most bands like me to sign a contract before I shoot asking me to limit the use of the images to non-commercial, send them a copy to use non-commercially with attribution (which is fine considering i share my work under creative commons anyway), and follow some simple rules during the concert. These have been very small items and usually don't affect me from using the images and the band's management has been good about tailoring contracts to fit my (and my site's) needs.
    The problem I have been facing is the contracts I have to sign for the venue, specifically the House of Blues. These have fairly harsh restrictions that forbid me from using the images after 1 year from the performance, limiting web use to 30 consecutive days without archiving, adding "with permission from HoB Entertainment" to image captions, etc. I find it odd that the venues are more restrictive on the use of images than the bands are.
    I know you can try to negotiate with bands because they want the publicity, I don't really feel that I can refuse to sign the form because it is normally handed to me by a low level will-call emplyee who doesn't have any power over it, and unlike the band, the venue doesn't really give a rats ass about the photos being published.
    Has anyone else run into similar problems and if so, have you found any ways around it? Any other advice/ info you have on the subject would be helpful.

    TL;DR: Bands and venues require you to sign contracts before photographing concerts. Band's rules are fairly lax but venues are overly strict.
     
  2. magkelly

    magkelly TPF Noob!

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    House of Blues that isn't just any venue. They have a real brand thing going on. It's a pretty major one at that. They may want more control so they will have your pics for future use for promotional items and stuff like that. I'd talk to them, but likely they'll make you sign it. They're tough on people with cameras. We used to go there and if you had so much as a pocket camera they'd take it till after the show.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I can't list all the reasons, but it's largely a matter of 'covering their ass'.

    My dad was a traveling production manager for HOB (Western Canada). I don't think he dealt with the photographers, but I do remember someone talking about a rule that photos were only allowed during the first three songs of an act/set. Obviously the performers look better/fresher at the start than at the end.

    I guess you could try to talk to someone on the management side of HOB, but I'd guess that you are unlikely to get anything out of them....Unless you name is Annie Leibovitz.
     
  4. amarine88

    amarine88 TPF Noob!

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    first three songs and no flash was in there, but it wasn't a big surprise because that is industry standard.

    One thing i found funny about the HoB contract is that, while there was a clause saying they could buy images from me, there wasn't anything that said I need to send them a copy of my images. I need to read it over a couple more times but I'm not sure how they will know they want to buy prints if they never see them.
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Have you had an attorney look over the contract?
     

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