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Author Topic: Property Release on Residential Houses?  (Read 5081 times)

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« on: November 17, 2007, 00:45 »
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I just had bunch of rejections for not having property release, this is the first time I ever come across this, none of the other sites have asked me for that before, is it insane or it's the new rule?  ( by the way I got rejected a bundle from them recently on property release)
Here is one they just rejected but accepted every where else:



« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2007, 03:43 »
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It's not insane. The photo doesn't show that you are shooting from public land. If you're standing on private property (which is what the photo implies) then you need a property release.

« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2007, 19:25 »
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Thanks for your reply, so if StockXpert thinks this needs property release, what this will make the other sites like:
SS, IS, DT, FT, BigStock
Are they not following the general guideline?

« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2007, 12:00 »
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Does anybody know the legal base behind all these property releases? I understand you can't sell photos of something copyrighted. For expample, lights on Eiffel tower are - so they can have monopoly on selling all the postcards and stuff (or at least have a part of that).
Now comes a little shack who-knows-where like in the picture above. Obviously, the appearance of this shack is not copyrighted, and I doubt very much that they are selling postcards or anything at all with their image. How selling that photo can harm the owner?
Just curious here.

« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2007, 16:52 »
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I guess it depends on how the image is used.  The owner may not like a particular situation. 

Regards,
Adelaide

« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2007, 17:56 »
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There isn't a darn thing in that photo that indicates where it is or whose property it is. I'm not going to see that photo and go invade the owner's privacy because I have no clue where it is!. And just because the photo doesn't show that the photographer was on public property doesn't mean he wasn't.

I personally have not experienced this kind of rejection yet, but I'm not getting why these are getting rejected. For gosh sakes, everything is sacred nowadays. I suppose my turn is coming though.

digiology

« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2007, 19:50 »
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Very nice photo BTW  :)

dbvirago

« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2007, 22:11 »
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I have shot and sold a lot of houses shot from public property. They are accepted at all agencies and were at SX until recently. They started rejecting all buildings of any type a few weeks ago. I had a lock on a gate rejected for no property release. Because of that, other arbitrary rejections, and reviews that tooks weeks, I stopped uploading there until they get the mess straightened out.

« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2007, 22:20 »
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Does anybody know the legal base behind all these property releases?

Model Releases are required for several invasion of privacy torts. Property releases are required for other, more questionably applicable, torts as well as copyright/trademark.

A good website for you is: http://www.danheller.com/model-release.html#8.2 Please Note that Dan Heller doesn't take the conservative route when it comes to releases. He also only considers copyright/trademark and those not the only ways you can be sued for photos of property (both real and personal).

If you really want to learn about them I would suggest Prosser and Keeton on Torts (Hornbook). The law on property releases is not settled and varies from state to state, and country to country.

« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2007, 23:25 »
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Thank you YingYang0 for the informative link! Here is what I found there:

Most of the time, buildings and other structures are not copyrighted, so unless there's a concern of misprepresentation, photos of these objects do not need property releases. And in such cases, uses of photos of buildings and animals can be used in most any context. For example, you can take a photo of Ross Valley Winery and license it to the city of Ross for a phone book. A release is not necessary, as this is a classic example of fair use. But, there are limitations. The same photo cannot be used for a book called, "History of Mondavi Winery," since the photo is not of that particular winery and would entail a misrepresentation of both companies.

And:
It is for concerns of mispresentation that people may opt for a property releases, even if one would not be necessary. That is, publishers often want to get permission from the property owner up front, before the image is used, as an assurance that they won't get sued later for misrepresentation.

So there, that explains StockXpert's (now part of Jupiter) and SnapVillage's policies. Just a safety net for them, not wanting to deal with lawsuits later. Silly, I say, but people have been known to go to court on even more ridiculous grounds... sigh... crazy world...:-)

« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2007, 00:09 »
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So there, that explains StockXpert's (now part of Jupiter) and SnapVillage's policies. Just a safety net for them, not wanting to deal with lawsuits later. Silly, I say, but people have been known to go to court on even more ridiculous grounds... sigh... crazy world...:-)
Again be cautious with what he says because he's not a lawyer (to my knowledge), he definitely doesn't discuss all the legal problems, and doesn't appear to have read the case law. That being said, his site is the best I've found for non-lawyers to learn about the business and legal aspects of photography.

« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2007, 04:01 »
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Thanks for all the good discussing, I found it's obsurd to reject those photos, here is one email from Stockxpert after rejecting a batch of 30 of my most popular interior residencial photos:

"Thank you very much for understanding. We wish to accept those images as they are great, but we need the releases.

This is what we currently require property releases for:

Objects that are copyrighted/trademarked, interiors or exteriors of buildings (commercial and residential), resorts and other private property that could be proven as being unique."

Image in questions sold everywhere like hot cakes:



« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2007, 06:36 »
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Carolyn from photoattorney.com has repeatedly posted that there has never been a US case showing the need for a property release.

« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2007, 09:12 »
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Carolyn from photoattorney.com has repeatedly posted that there has never been a US case showing the need for a property release.
There hasn't been a successful reported case, that right. But that doesn't mean they haven't tried. The case that comes to mind is Rock and Roll Hall of Fame v. Gentile. The photographer ultimately won the case, but remember he most likely had very large legal bills after it all.

I'd also like to point out that it pisses off clients when they receive cease and desist letters because a photo they used in advertising campaigns was taken without permission, whether or not a release was legally required.

Do I think property releases are stupid, yes. However, I'm a cautious person and I can see someone eventually being successfully sued for conversion on this issue, particularly in the 9th circuit.

« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2007, 09:20 »
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The agencies don't want to bother with batting away all the nuisance suits from property owners, which have no legal foundation in the US. They're protecting themselves from costly administrative and legal burden more than the threat of successful lawsuits, as Yingyang just pointed out.

This is my understanding after conversations around trademarked buildings with Ellen Boughn. I presume from the other comments in this thread that the same situation extends to private property as well (i.e. not formally trademarked buildings). Ellen was citing The Professional Photographers Legal Handbook by Nancy Wolff.  I've ordered my copy. This field is a nightmare with lots of 'opinions' floating around. It'll be good to read about it from an experienced barrister who specialises in this field.

Again, Yingyang raises another good point - that the agencies are protecting their buyers from similar burdens and annoyances.

« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2007, 16:29 »
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I have shot and sold a lot of houses shot from public property. They are accepted at all agencies and were at SX until recently. They started rejecting all buildings of any type a few weeks ago. I had a lock on a gate rejected for no property release. Because of that, other arbitrary rejections, and reviews that tooks weeks, I stopped uploading there until they get the mess straightened out.

Same here.   And too on StockXpert just got a typical pic shot down, no property release.

What they don't know is that I do shoot everything from a public area.  and then... The vast majority of my  property pictures are NOT the property.  I've flipped them, I've removed outbuildings, I've put in trees, I've removed fences...windows, doors... even painted the stinken house... the point. The final image is light years from the original.  Unfortunately... a reviewer doesn't know that.  I can't get a property release for a  'fantasy'  house.  Techincally, that house doesn't exist anywhere.
   And if the law is getting that touchy that .... "hey, I can identify it's my house from the  dent in the siding,   even though it's facing the wrong way, it's painted green,  my garage is gone, the outhouse is gone and there's a big tree in the yard ....."     maybe we all need to give up shooting anything built.  What's the point.  Just because you paint the 'bow tie" off a chevy truck... that means legally it can't be identified as a chevy truck?  I still know it's a chevy truck... and so's everyone that knows what a chevy truck looks like.
      Now you need model release for the back of someone's head... or a shot of their left pinky finger...     it's getting nuts!!   

   Will I soon need a intellectual property release from the Almighty when I turn in a shot of some apples?      8)=tom

« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2007, 17:23 »
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my interiors are my best selling shots.

I have gone to the point of deleting any paintings/photos in view and replacing those bits with my own art.

but now, every site I am on rejects EVERY interior shot.

Frustrates me to hell.

Added to this i can get a property release, but i have had issues where the sites will not accept a generic property release.

« Reply #17 on: November 19, 2007, 19:15 »
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UK Photographers Rights

http://www.sirimo.co.uk/ukpr.php/2004/11/19/uk_photographers_rights_guide

Interesting reading for those in the UK

« Reply #18 on: November 19, 2007, 19:44 »
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... I've flipped them, I've removed outbuildings, I've put in trees, I've removed fences...windows, doors... even painted the stinken house... the point. The final image is light years from the original.  Unfortunately... a reviewer doesn't know that.  I can't get a property release for a  'fantasy'  house.  Techincally, that house doesn't exist anywhere.
If you're already going to those lengths to make the image, why not make up a phoney property release, complete with amusing names?

« Reply #19 on: November 19, 2007, 21:32 »
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... I've flipped them, I've removed outbuildings, I've put in trees, I've removed fences...windows, doors... even painted the stinken house... the point. The final image is light years from the original.  Unfortunately... a reviewer doesn't know that.  I can't get a property release for a  'fantasy'  house.  Techincally, that house doesn't exist anywhere.
If you're already going to those lengths to make the image, why not make up a phoney property release, complete with amusing names?

HA!!  :D  Sharply....  good one...  thanks for bringing a smile to my face!!  LOL     ...  8)=tom

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