Need help with image license/usage rights and consent for TV documentary.

Caroline Hilty

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Hello, I am new to this Forum. I was recently approached by a TV network to use images that I photographed for a Documentary that they are producing. Back story, the photos are of a missing couple that I photographed in 2006. I photographed the couple as a freelance assignment for a local to the area magazine. I was never paid and never signed over rights to the images, however the photos were handed over to AP without my consent and were used in editorial publications online and print for the past decade.
Anyhow, I am not sure how to respond to the request for consent. The person/company that contacted me wanting consent left it very vague. Is this something that they would normally have to pay for? Is there a standard release form for TV rights?
I would love any advice on this as I don't know how to handle this. Thanks!
 

tirediron

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The first thing to do is 'de-vague' this. Given that there's been a decade of editorial use, you're not in a great position to get rich off of it, but I would contact them, ask them to articulate specifically what they want, and ask them how much they're offering for the use. There's a wealth of on-line resources for this, and basically, once you have their ask, take that, put it into an appropriate use agreement with the fee, send it to them as a .pdf, they print, sign, scan and return the signed agreement, you give them the file.

As far as which form, that depends on where in the world you are... this sort of law varies widely by region.
 
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Caroline Hilty

Caroline Hilty

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Thanks for your response, I'm in the US. I did respond to the person that contacted me, letting him know that I was the photographer/copyright owner. I asked him what images they were wanting to use and if the network had a standard agreement with the rights that they are wanting. (still waiting for a response)
I'm not looking to get rich of these photos, but don't want to feel taken advantage of especially if there is a standard rate for this type of use, it's more confusing for me since it's for TV and not print.
 

tirediron

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Honestly, standard rates have pretty much gone out the window, especially for this sort of stuff. Find out what they're willing to offer, if you're good with it, ask for 10% more and call it a day.
 
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Caroline Hilty

Caroline Hilty

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Good to know. I will post how it goes when I hear back. Thanks again!
 
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Caroline Hilty

Caroline Hilty

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Update: Their response... "The rights we seek exclude theatrical and standard U.S. television (NBC/ABC/CBS, etc….), and they’re for ten years (as opposed to "in perpetuity”). I’m hoping this allows you to license the images to us at something close to $150/image."

They are wanting to use 3-5 images, I feel satisfied with this amount.
 

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