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Author Topic: Istock changes model release policy???  (Read 17328 times)

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« on: January 07, 2009, 15:44 »
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Like most of you, I work with a model release that suits every microstock site.  After a few adjustments, it seems it is good enough for every site and I have used it for 1,5 years without problems, including Istockphoto.
This week however, I had 16 images inspected, and 5 contained people.  Istock rejected all 5 because of "MR not compatible with Istock policy".   No reason given, so I don't know what would be missing suddenly.  (and FYI : each MR was for a different model, of a different shoot).
Among those 5 were 3 model releases they had already accepted several times before.
I am not going to contact the models to sign the Istock model release, so what should I do?

Does any one know what detail in a standard MR they are looking for at the moment? 
At least I 'd know what's wrong with it all of a sudden!


e-person

« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2009, 15:52 »
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Getty has a new model release form.  :)

lisafx

« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2009, 15:55 »
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I have had the same thing happen a few times recently.  In my case they rejected the releases because there was no photographer signature, even though these are the same releases I have been using for 4 years that never required a photographers signature.

A call to support confirmed that if you are using your own release with photographer's name and contact info preprinted on it, then photographer's signature is still not required.  All my rejections for release were overturned and accepted.

Apparently there are some new reviewers who don't understand istock's model release policy and just reject by default if there is no photog signature.  

For my future releases I am signing just to avoid this.

« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2009, 16:14 »
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Well, mine are all signed by me (and preprinted too), but I suppose you're right that this might be an error of a newbie inspector :  all 5 rejections arrived within 10 minutes, so they could come from the same person.
OK, I'll send Scout a contact ticket, but not for the Valentine photos : these 2nd inspections take so long that 14th February will be over by the time they are approved  ;D

« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2009, 17:42 »
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I have downloaded and modified the form used by Your Arcurs.  I don't suppose that Istock rejects his images based on that form?  He's form clearly states: " Model release form for all agencies" 

So I thought that if it's good enought and valid forhim, then surely it must be for me as well

Everybody can download it in word format from his homepage.

grp_photo

« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2009, 18:06 »
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Getty has a new model release form.  :)


where do i get the new model release form? On  gettys website is still the old one i'm already using for years. Though i'm not a getty contributor i'm using this release for all my macro work. The one i'm using is here http://contributors.gettyimages.com/article.asp?article_id=1767

e-person

« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2009, 19:12 »
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Getty has a new model release form.  :)


where do i get the new model release form? On  gettys website is still the old one i'm already using for years. Though i'm not a getty contributor i'm using this release for all my macro work. The one i'm using is here http://contributors.gettyimages.com/article.asp?article_id=1767


Sorry, I don't know where you can find the new ones. I suppose SJLocke knows, he's with Getty. I am not. In fact I am with none other than Alamy. I am not that organized, yet.


shank_ali

« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2009, 02:26 »
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The standard istockphoto model release form is very straight forward IMO.
I did have one rejection and that was  because the inspector wanted the full witness name not just the signature  even though the form does not specify "full name" on the witness section.
I always carry several model release forms in my kit bag.

« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2009, 03:53 »
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I had 2 images rejected in dec for same reason, resubmitted and got through ok.

RT


« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2009, 04:27 »
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Getty has a new model release form.  :)


where do i get the new model release form? On  gettys website is still the old one i'm already using for years. Though i'm not a getty contributor i'm using this release for all my macro work. The one i'm using is here http://contributors.gettyimages.com/article.asp?article_id=1767


Sorry, I don't know where you can find the new ones. I suppose SJLocke knows, he's with Getty. I am not. In fact I am with none other than Alamy. I am not that organized, yet.




It's via the contributor section, if you PM me your email address I'll send you the release which is a PDF.

Or in case Leaf missed this the first time round is there a way to attach a PDF here?
http://www.microstockgroup.com/index.php?topic=6611.0
« Last Edit: January 08, 2009, 04:29 by RT »

e-person

« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2009, 04:33 »
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Thank you Richard, it was not me asking for it, though. I was just replying.

I use Italian language version (I am in Italy), do not want to give you any troubles. don't worry about me, I am OK with the old ones. Thank you anyway.

« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2009, 04:39 »
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Hi,
 Same here
I got forms (model & property)  written  by lawyer - and still doesn't work for Istock.
But after all that is there rule.

« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2009, 06:19 »
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Fill in MR from IS with your data and copy/paste models signature from your regular MR to new one :D
I'm kidding, I know It's illegal, but I remember one guy told me that he did it....
Not everybody is so honest like you Anyka

« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2009, 08:27 »
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Hi everybody,

The following link is a model release in a pdf file I created based on iStock format which has been working for me for the last year until yesterday for all agencies:

http://ca.geocities.com/denispepin@rogers.com/model_release.pdf

It is very similar to theirs:

http://www.istockphoto.com/docs/modelrelease.pdf

It should work as it works for me. Denis
« Last Edit: January 08, 2009, 09:47 by cybernesco »

« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2009, 12:04 »
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Even if I could go back to last year's models and present the Istock Model Release to them : I simply do not want to do that.  Suppose all agencies would be so fussy, should we take 6 different releases and ask every model to sign it?  No way. 
Before contacting Scout, I'll resubmit and see if I am lucky enough to get a different reviewer.

« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2009, 13:13 »
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Good news :  all 5 refused photos got through after being resubmitted.  So if any one of you gets a refusal for bad MR, just try again and keep your fingers crossed that you'll get another reviewer!

shank_ali

« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2009, 15:11 »
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Good news :  all 5 refused photos got through after being resubmitted.  So if any one of you gets a refusal for bad MR, just try again and keep your fingers crossed that you'll get another reviewer!
I had two images this weekend that got inspected one asking for a MR ( i uploaded one) and the other asking for a clearer MR.The thing that annoys me is i have used this model recently and had no problems with the same  MR i uploade with these two images..They view our files on calibrated monitors at 100% is it to much to ask the inspectors to magnify the MR and look at an obvious model release form,phone number,signature and witness/photographer's signature and details.

« Reply #17 on: February 02, 2009, 16:33 »
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i have had rejected a photo of a professional model with MR form filled up with agency's booker - with the agency's adress - the only thing where you can find this model for modeling purpose on the planet earth.
 after a several mails and telephone calls - i just gave up the file. of course - they are not right - morally and legally, but one image less in my portfolio is saving more my nerves, than 'fighting for justice.

*imagine this option:
on photo shooting on exampe.. for l'oreal - if photographer asked a models "excuse me young misses - may i have your home adress, and not agency's in your contract/mr. excuse me miss penelope cruz are you sure this is your home adress?" ... :)

lisafx

« Reply #18 on: February 02, 2009, 16:56 »
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i have had rejected a photo of a professional model with MR form filled up with agency's booker - with the agency's adress - the only thing where you can find this model for modeling purpose on the planet earth.
 after a several mails and telephone calls - i just gave up the file. of course - they are not right - morally and legally, but one image less in my portfolio is saving more my nerves, than 'fighting for justice.

*imagine this option:
on photo shooting on exampe.. for l'oreal - if photographer asked a models "excuse me young misses - may i have your home adress, and not agency's in your contract/mr. excuse me miss penelope cruz are you sure this is your home adress?" ... :)

I agree with you, it should be acceptable. 

But when asking for a release with the home address, make sure to make it clear to the model that their address is just to have on file.  It is not given out when someone downloads a file.  So even though it is on file with the agency, it will not endanger their privacy. 

I have never had anyone refuse to sign the release and provide the information once they understood that. 

« Reply #19 on: February 02, 2009, 17:17 »
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yes, but if model has an exclusive contract with agency - that's the same thing as we have to sign model release for our kids - if we agree with selling photos with our kids.
 i never had a problem, but according the privacy there are some interesting questions that i have on my mind:
-are sites possible for hackers to brake in ? - yes
- who are MR reviewers (now - i have on my mind that on isp reviewer actually do not see a mr? (i forgot a few times to attach mr, and few times deep meta did not "pull" the releases with files - and i had a "...upon an initial inspection, we determined that your mr is missing ... etc - but did not ask )? where do they live? which country? which town? which adress? do any of these persons have a criminal history? violence? women abusing? where can i find these information?
so, i rather gave up the file, and saved some of my nerves.

« Reply #20 on: February 03, 2009, 10:05 »
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We had a release refused from Dreamstime (I know not Istock, so a bit off topic), but it brought up some very interesting thoughts/issues.  DT basically said they didn't care.

The issue was the lack of a phone number/address from the model. The model wasn't comfortable giving up that information, as he's a doctor.  Explaining it was difficult as his English wasn't the greatest, and he was the only french speaking person on the trip.  Their claim was that without an address and phone number, they are suspect as to if the model truly signed it.  However the model had supplied an e-mail address; which makes them just as (if not more) accessible then a foreign mailing address and phone number.

The issues that came to light with the rejection were... yes, while in general civilized life, everyone has a postal address and phone number.  However when you go beyond the typical world that we live in, you are likely to find many interesting subjects that that have no postal address, nor a phone.  Luckily the last time I was in a far away land (Micronesia), the locals we shot were able to use the address and phone of the boat that we were on and they were employed by and those were accepted.

« Reply #21 on: February 12, 2009, 20:27 »
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it's quite annoying. first, all the sites accepted my MRs. then IS changed their policy and started to reject my uploads. ok, i thought i will use the IS' Mrs in future coz there's really a lot of information in it and everybody should be fine with it.

aaaand: today i got my first rejections on DT coz of the MR with the following reason:

The model release represents a written agreement between the model and the photographer, therefore it must be governed by the laws of the country/state where one of the parties reside, or by international laws.
The attached MR/PR is signed specifically for another agency, or it is not generic in terms of the laws that govern the agreement. The model release represents a written agreement between the model and the photographer, therefore it must be governed by the laws of the country/state where the parties reside, or by international laws. Please use our own model release document or a generic one in English.


i had no problems for about two month on DT with this IS MR. but now it doesn't seem to be right anymore... hmmmm...

imagine, every site wanted to get its own MR signed: "sorry, may you pls fill out and sign this MR for me? and this one, and then this, and this..... eeehm..... and if you aren't tired, yet, i'd have another 10 forms......."

now, for the next shooting i gonna try denis' MR. hope, this works for all the sites. or does anybody have other sugestions?

cheers from bangkok
mac

« Reply #22 on: February 12, 2009, 20:28 »
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it's quite annoying. first, all the sites accepted my MRs. then IS changed their policy and started to reject my uploads. ok, i thought i would use the IS' MRs in future then coz there's really a lot of information in it and everybody should be fine with it.

aaaand: today i got my first rejections on DT coz of the MR with the following reason:

The model release represents a written agreement between the model and the photographer, therefore it must be governed by the laws of the country/state where one of the parties reside, or by international laws.
The attached MR/PR is signed specifically for another agency, or it is not generic in terms of the laws that govern the agreement. The model release represents a written agreement between the model and the photographer, therefore it must be governed by the laws of the country/state where the parties reside, or by international laws. Please use our own model release document or a generic one in English.


i had no problems for about two month on DT with this IS MR. but now it doesn't seem to be right anymore... hmmmm...

imagine, every site wanted to get its own MR signed and you have to tell the models: "sorry, may you pls fill out and sign this MR for me? and this one, and then this, and this..... eeehm..... those were the big 6, i'd have another 10 forms from smaller sites, too, if you don't mind......."

now, for the next shooting i gonna try denis' MR. hope, this works for all the sites. or does anybody have other suggestions?

cheers from bangkok
mac
« Last Edit: February 12, 2009, 20:34 by thaimacky »

« Reply #23 on: February 12, 2009, 21:13 »
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I've been using a slightly edited version of Shutterstock's MR, which every other agency has accepted without issue.  (I removed the two references to Shutterstock.)  Even iStockphoto accepts this release now that I've added my name and address to the form.

« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2009, 00:51 »
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Here we go again :  Istock just refused 2 MR's of the same shoot.  They have accepted more than 80% of that shoot already and now suddenly they decide it is not compatible with Istock policy.  They don't even state why.

shank_ali

« Reply #25 on: February 13, 2009, 02:07 »
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Here we go again :  Istock just refused 2 MR's of the same shoot.  They have accepted more than 80% of that shoot already and now suddenly they decide it is not compatible with Istock policy.  They don't even state why.
I would just contact support.There is a free phone number.
BTW... loving your work !

« Reply #26 on: February 13, 2009, 04:37 »
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People need to start 'thinking outside the box', a model release is a contract between YOU (the photographer) and the MODEL, the agencies are not part of that contract, the model release needs certain information for it to be legally binding in the country where the photo was taken (names,addresses,signatures etc)

Nearly every agency requires a model release uploaded with the photo, and they require certain information on them, however NO agency is legally entitled to use any of this information and they will break data protection laws in most countries if they do.

Some people have mentioned their models are concerned about their personal information being shared with other parties.

If there ever was a legal case regarding a photo bought via a stock agency and the release needed to be presented it would have to be the original that you hold, not the one that you've uploaded to the stock agency.

Think laterally people it's not rocket science!

« Reply #27 on: February 13, 2009, 05:23 »
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We had a release refused from Dreamstime (I know not Istock, so a bit off topic), but it brought up some very interesting thoughts/issues.  DT basically said they didn't care.

The issue was the lack of a phone number/address from the model. The model wasn't comfortable giving up that information, as he's a doctor.  Explaining it was difficult as his English wasn't the greatest, and he was the only french speaking person on the trip.  Their claim was that without an address and phone number, they are suspect as to if the model truly signed it.  However the model had supplied an e-mail address; which makes them just as (if not more) accessible then a foreign mailing address and phone number.

The issues that came to light with the rejection were... yes, while in general civilized life, everyone has a postal address and phone number.  However when you go beyond the typical world that we live in, you are likely to find many interesting subjects that that have no postal address, nor a phone.  Luckily the last time I was in a far away land (Micronesia), the locals we shot were able to use the address and phone of the boat that we were on and they were employed by and those were accepted.
Yes I had an even worse case with Dreams recently. One of my models lives in a village distant from any city and she doesn't have any phone number at all (neither email indeed). So DT rejected that release despite all other details provided (address, witness etc).

Needless to say the same release was accepted by istock, shutter, and several other...

« Reply #28 on: February 13, 2009, 05:46 »
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Correct.  It is a contract between you and the model.
And Istock also says it should be within the law of the country of model and photographer.

I had my MR reviewed by a lawyer.  It was (originally, before review), a mixture of the Istock and Shutterstock releases. 
The lawyer added two clauses :
1. a maximum claim of 500 euros (this is very low compared to the average US claim, but quite normal in Belgium)
2. the courts to be used in case of dispute should be the Belgian ones (this clause can be found in EVERY Belgian contract).

Until now, this adapted version of the MR has been approved by every agency (for more than 1,5 year now).  Recently, one Istock reviewer refused it for 2 photos, that's all.

lisafx

« Reply #29 on: February 13, 2009, 08:54 »
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Not sure why you are lecturing here.  Most of us know all this already - it has nothing to do with "thinking outside the box" or "thinking laterally" although those are really cool catch phrases!  I am sure if you try you can work "synergy" in there somewhere too.  ;)

However it is totally irrelevant that the agencies doesn't really, legally, need a copy of the model release or particular information they are demanding be on it.  The fact is they won't accept images of people without them, so if we want to do business with the micros we have to provide them.
 

People need to start 'thinking outside the box', a model release is a contract between YOU (the photographer) and the MODEL, the agencies are not part of that contract, the model release needs certain information for it to be legally binding in the country where the photo was taken (names,addresses,signatures etc)

Nearly every agency requires a model release uploaded with the photo, and they require certain information on them, however NO agency is legally entitled to use any of this information and they will break data protection laws in most countries if they do.

Some people have mentioned their models are concerned about their personal information being shared with other parties.

If there ever was a legal case regarding a photo bought via a stock agency and the release needed to be presented it would have to be the original that you hold, not the one that you've uploaded to the stock agency.

Think laterally people it's not rocket science!

« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2009, 09:50 »
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Not sure why you are lecturing here.  Most of us know all this already - it has nothing to do with "thinking outside the box" or "thinking laterally" although those are really cool catch phrases!  I am sure if you try you can work "synergy" in there somewhere too.  ;)

However it is totally irrelevant that the agencies doesn't really, legally, need a copy of the model release or particular information they are demanding be on it.  The fact is they won't accept images of people without them, so if we want to do business with the micros we have to provide them. 

Sorry you see what I wrote as a lecture it wasn't intended to be, I was trying to help some others out who appear confused by all this.

I'll try and explain it more clearly.

When you photograph a model with the intention of selling the shots for commercial stock you need a model release (contract) between you and the model and it needs to be worded in a way that is legal in your country or more precisley the country in which the shoot took place.

When you upload these shots to agencies they require a copy of a release with all the information as previously mentioned.

However the agencies are not legally entitled to that information and in many countries they break data protection laws for:
a. asking for it
b. using the information

So the point I am making is:

You MUST have a legal model release signed by the model with their genuine details on to keep for your records should it ever be needed.

The agencies must have a model release with information they require on it in order to accept your shots.

BUT if you want to safeguard your models information and in most cases comply with data laws just upload a release with psuedo information on it and keep the original to yourself, the whole thing is just a 'box ticking' excercise.

Strange as it may seem in my country I am actually complying with the law by doing this.






RT


« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2009, 10:00 »
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A lot of pro's use stage name and details on their releases, and if you hire from some professional modelling agencies the models themselves will put the agency details down in the contact information because it's what the agencies tell them to do.


shank_ali

« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2009, 14:43 »
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Nothing to stop you putting any name on a model release.It's not like the agengies can be arsed phoning and checking details. ::)
I do not have many peeps in my portfolio but they are genuine BTW.

lisafx

« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2009, 14:55 »
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Nothing to stop you putting any name on a model release.It's not like the agengies can be arsed phoning and checking details. ::)

Except of course that knowingly falsifying legal documents is a crime. 

Will you get caught?  Probably not.  But I really can't see any reason to jeopardize my business or reputation over something like that. 

If the model doesn't feel comfortable with the release, then they aren't a good candidate to do stock modeling in the first place.  Plenty more fish in the sea...

« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2009, 15:30 »
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I happen to be working on an article for iStockphoto about model releases.

While I can't go into specific rejection cases, I'd love to hear anyone's questions about the releases. But please send them as private messages, or I'll probably lose them in the chaos that is the interwebz.

RT


« Reply #35 on: February 13, 2009, 15:58 »
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Nothing to stop you putting any name on a model release.It's not like the agengies can be arsed phoning and checking details. ::)

Except of course that knowingly falsifying legal documents is a crime. 

Will you get caught?  Probably not.  But I really can't see any reason to jeopardize my business or reputation over something like that. 

If the model doesn't feel comfortable with the release, then they aren't a good candidate to do stock modeling in the first place.  Plenty more fish in the sea...

Lisa nobody is suggesting you falsify a legal document, the legal document is the contract between you and the model, the agencies are third party to that contract. (There are other types that involve Getty and Corbis but thats another story)

If we're talking legalities, certainly here in the UK supplying the personal information that is on my model releases to any microstock agency is actually breaking the law under our Data Protection act, I'd be interested to know whether the same applies over in the US.

To say that a model is not a good candidate because they don't want their personal details shared with others out of their control is a bit naive IMO, I take great care to ensure that my models are protected the best way I can, when I upload a photo I have no idea who the reviewer is or what security measures they have in place, the majority of reviewers are doing it in their own home on their home computers with no data security protection in place, they are not employees of the agencies and are not viewing this information in controlled areas, under the UK act to store and or view third party data information is governed by strict legislation and the procedure that microstock agencies employ for reviewers to examine our model releases certainly doesn't come anywhere near the legal requirements.






lisafx

« Reply #36 on: February 13, 2009, 16:41 »
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Lisa nobody is suggesting you falsify a legal document, the legal document is the contract between you and the model, the agencies are third party to that contract. (There are other types that involve Getty and Corbis but thats another story)


I know you weren't Richard, but I was responding to Shank's comment and it certainly appears he is suggesting falsifying it.

Quote

If we're talking legalities, certainly here in the UK supplying the personal information that is on my model releases to any microstock agency is actually breaking the law under our Data Protection act, I'd be interested to know whether the same applies over in the US.


No, I don't think there is any comparable act over here.  Would be nice if there was, from a consumer point of view.  Especially with the government talking about digitizing and linking everybody's medical records throughout the country.  But I digress...



Quote
... when I upload a photo I have no idea who the reviewer is or what security measures they have in place, the majority of reviewers are doing it in their own home on their home computers with no data security protection in place, they are not employees of the agencies and are not viewing this information in controlled areas, under the UK act to store and or view third party data information is governed by strict legislation and the procedure that microstock agencies employ for reviewers to examine our model releases certainly doesn't come anywhere near the legal requirements.

This is an excellent argument.  I definitely see how that could be a problem. 

I have heard others say they blur the personal info when they upload the releases and that seems like a much better solution to me than actually executing a document with fake details to upload to the micros. 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 17:12 by lisafx »

shank_ali

« Reply #37 on: February 13, 2009, 17:09 »
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Nothing to stop you putting any name on a model release.It's not like the agengies can be arsed phoning and checking details. ::)

Except of course that knowingly falsifying legal documents is a crime. 

Will you get caught?  Probably not.  But I really can't see any reason to jeopardize my business or reputation over something like that. 

If the model doesn't feel comfortable with the release, then they aren't a good candidate to do stock modeling in the first place.  Plenty more fish in the sea...
I do hear you loud and clear Lisa but i feel the whole issue of putting the correct name to a face in our photos is open to abuse and not enough checking is done by the micro industry. IMO

RT


« Reply #38 on: February 13, 2009, 18:29 »
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This is an excellent argument.  I definitely see how that could be a problem. 

I have heard others say they blur the personal info when they upload the releases and that seems like a much better solution to me than actually executing a document with fake details to upload to the micros. 

I can see that blurring the info could lead to some agencies rejecting the release because the info cannot be read, there is a way around this and it's what I mentioned when I spoke of what the modelling agencies do, the release that you upload to an agency requires contact details on it, there is nothing to stop you putting your own address, phone number and email on the one you upload to the agency, if a model ever needs to be contacted they can come through you and as you hold the details of the model you can then contact them.
The details are not fake per se, they are genuine contact details for the model albeit via yourself.

The most important factor is that the photographer holds a release signed by the model, and to be honest if you speak in any great depth with any agency management you'll find that is all they are actually interested in, they know the info cannot be shared or used but they have a duty to make sure the contributors are aware of the legal implications because the images are available for commercial use.

On a side note as this thread was started in relation to iStock, I had an image rejected on iS because the release of a minor had the mothers details and under the mothers address I wrote 'same as model', the inspector wrote that the address section still needed to be filled in, I wrote back saying that the release is a perfectly legal document and that if they didn't like it just reject the image but check with a superior first, twenty minutes later it was approved. Kudos to that iStock inspector for doing the right thing but it also leads me to think that on a lot of occassions they don't know what experience the contributor has so they have to treat every images as if it was the contributors first. I know we all love to bash reviewers but I do think the agencies could make their job a lot easier.

My own personal view to how this problem could be avoided is that you upload one release for each model which is viewed at the agency HQ by agency staff, that release is then held on secure storage and when you upload a shot of the same model on subsequent occassions you just tick a box for the approved model, then no reviewer actually needs to see the release but they know an approved one exists and hence the possible security breaches are bypassed.
I actually think it would be a much better solution that what happens at present, and more cost effective in the long run, the time it takes for a reviewer to check a release to see that the i's are dotted and t's crossed could be time spent reviewing more images.

@ the guy above who said he's doing a release review on iStock, sorry I'm not typing all this again  :D




 

shank_ali

« Reply #39 on: February 14, 2009, 02:00 »
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I presume it is the photographers responsability to check the models home address,phone number and email addy are correct on a model release form???
Have you ever known a model be CONTACTED by a micro agency asking if the details are correct.
Moreover moving house,changing phones/number and using a new email addy makes the task of the agency to track the model an impossable task!

« Reply #40 on: February 14, 2009, 13:01 »
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If we're talking legalities, certainly here in the UK supplying the personal information that is on my model releases to any microstock agency is actually breaking the law under our Data Protection act, I'd be interested to know whether the same applies over in the US.
Nope. We don't have a data protection act anything like what you guys have. The closest thing we have is HIPAA, but that only applies to medical records.


 

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