Question about Celebrity-shooters

TheKenTurner

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Why are paparazzi allowed to sell photos of celebrities without release forms from the celebrity?
 

Dliwevad

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Paparazzi taking photos from public places of celebrities or anybody else is legal (minors might be different story)

As far as needing a release; For editorial usage (e.g. publishing in books, magazines, blogs, etc.) you do NOT need explicit permission from your subjects. It doesn't matter whether they are famous or not.

For commercial promotional usage (e.g. in advertising) you DO need explicit permission, again, regardless of the celebrity status.

At least I think this is correct. Somebody correct me if not?
 

minicoop1985

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That's the US, basically. Other countries may vary for all I know. It boils down to this phrase: expectation of privacy. In public, there isn't any, which can be kinda creepy at times.
 

peter27

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Why are paparazzi allowed to sell photos of celebrities without release forms from the celebrity?

Because if the celebs didn't get their mugs into the tabloids and mags as often as possible, they wouldn't be celebs anymore. No brainer, really.
 

JTPhotography

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Paparazzi taking photos from public places of celebrities or anybody else is legal (minors might be different story)

As far as needing a release; For editorial usage (e.g. publishing in books, magazines, blogs, etc.) you do NOT need explicit permission from your subjects. It doesn't matter whether they are famous or not.

For commercial promotional usage (e.g. in advertising) you DO need explicit permission, again, regardless of the celebrity status.

At least I think this is correct. Somebody correct me if not?

That's the way I understand it as well.
 

Steve5D

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Why are paparazzi allowed to sell photos of celebrities without release forms from the celebrity?

Because if the celebs didn't get their mugs into the tabloids and mags as often as possible, they wouldn't be celebs anymore. No brainer, really.

I honestly can't remember when I last picked up a tabloid or a magazine to see what celebrity was featured in it...
 

KmH

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Yep. Usage determines to a large degree if use of a photo containing people needs a release, or not.
Other factors also have to be considered.

As mentioned editorial usage generally does not require a release, but commercial usage does.
Go by the legal definitions of editorial and commercial, and not the general or 'street' definitions of editorial/commercial.

Selling prints of photos that have people in them is an editorial use, unless the prints are mass-produced and widely distributed, which would then be a commercial usage.

Another consideration is that model release law is state law, so there are 50 different versions here in the USA.
Some states, but mostly those that have a significant entertainment industry, California and New York for example, have 'right of publicity' statutes that may also need to be considered.

Here is a good reference book, but model/property release law is not as cut and dried as laws like traffic laws.
A Digital Photographer's Guide to Model Releases: Making the Best Business Decisions with Your Photos of People, Places and Things
 

peter27

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Why are paparazzi allowed to sell photos of celebrities without release forms from the celebrity?

Because if the celebs didn't get their mugs into the tabloids and mags as often as possible, they wouldn't be celebs anymore. No brainer, really.

I honestly can't remember when I last picked up a tabloid or a magazine to see what celebrity was featured in it...

Yes, maybe these days but my point is that if the celebs tried to stop the photos being sold to who and wherever without a realease, then that would be a no brainer because they court the attention of the paparazzi and rely on this to keep them in the public eye. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot if they got heavy handed about the legal angle, wouldn't they?
 

Steve5D

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Because if the celebs didn't get their mugs into the tabloids and mags as often as possible, they wouldn't be celebs anymore. No brainer, really.

I honestly can't remember when I last picked up a tabloid or a magazine to see what celebrity was featured in it...

Yes, maybe these days but my point is that if the celebs tried to stop the photos being sold to who and wherever without a realease, then that would be a no brainer because they court the attention of the paparazzi and rely on this to keep them in the public eye. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot if they got heavy handed about the legal angle, wouldn't they?

Honestly, I don't think they would.

Look at the celebrities that photographers chase around. Do you think Brad Pitt's stock as a celebrity is going to go down if he starts getting "heavy handed" with photographers?
 

peter27

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I honestly can't remember when I last picked up a tabloid or a magazine to see what celebrity was featured in it...

Yes, maybe these days but my point is that if the celebs tried to stop the photos being sold to who and wherever without a realease, then that would be a no brainer because they court the attention of the paparazzi and rely on this to keep them in the public eye. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot if they got heavy handed about the legal angle, wouldn't they?

Honestly, I don't think they would.

Look at the celebrities that photographers chase around. Do you think Brad Pitt's stock as a celebrity is going to go down if he starts getting "heavy handed" with photographers?

Yes, of course. It's true that some people have gilt-edged names, but bad press can be very damaging to a person's image. Never under estimate the power of the press: Brad doesn't!
 

Steve5D

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Yes, maybe these days but my point is that if the celebs tried to stop the photos being sold to who and wherever without a realease, then that would be a no brainer because they court the attention of the paparazzi and rely on this to keep them in the public eye. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot if they got heavy handed about the legal angle, wouldn't they?

Honestly, I don't think they would.

Look at the celebrities that photographers chase around. Do you think Brad Pitt's stock as a celebrity is going to go down if he starts getting "heavy handed" with photographers?

Yes, of course. It's true that some people have gilt-edged names, but bad press can be very damaging to a person's image. Never under estimate the power of the press: Brad doesn't!

Well, to the public, being heavy handed paparazzi probably wouldn't come across as "bad press". Remember, a lot of people still believe that the paparazzi killed Princess Diana...
 

Smokeyr67

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Some celeb's honestly don't seem to like the intrusion into their private lives, case in point is Sienna Miller
 

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