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Using Celebrity Photos

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by watchintv, Feb 19, 2006.

  1. #1
    How should I go about using a celebrity photo in my website. Do I have to worry about copyright or ask for permission from either the person thats in the photo or the person who took the photo, or both?
     
    watchintv, Feb 19, 2006 IP
  2. mjewel

    mjewel Prominent Member

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    #2
    You need to have permission to use most photos. Rights to a photo are usually owned by the photographer or the agency they work for.

    You absolutely need to have permission to use a celebrity photo. If the copyright holder discovers unauthorized usage, they can pretty much demand whatever fee they want. There are several posts on this forum about demands for thousands of dollars. The celebrity usually has nothing to say about it.

    There are a few websites that specialize in celebrity photos - they aren't cheap, but can save you a lot of trouble in the long run. The particular celebrity might also be willing to allow usage of a photo they own the rights to, but you would need to contact their agent and probably tell them about your site. Fan sites that are not commerical in nature have the best chance. Non-Commerical means the site doesn't generate any type of revenue... i.e. adsense, membership fee, product, donations for bandwidth, etc.
     
    mjewel, Feb 19, 2006 IP
  3. watchintv

    watchintv Peon

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    #3
    thanks for your reply
     
    watchintv, Feb 19, 2006 IP
  4. watchintv

    watchintv Peon

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    #4
    oh, one more thing. does it anything change if its for a weblog?
     
    watchintv, Feb 19, 2006 IP
  5. SkiRat44

    SkiRat44 Peon

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    #5
    Depends on if you have any sort of revenue-generating stuff on there. If so, then same copyright stuff applies. If not, consider it more of a fan site, and the risk is less...
     
    SkiRat44, Feb 20, 2006 IP
  6. watchintv

    watchintv Peon

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    #6
    thanks for the reply
     
    watchintv, Feb 20, 2006 IP
  7. redz

    redz Well-Known Member

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    #7
    wow, never knew this can turn into a legal dispute, good i did not use any celebrities on my sites :)
     
    redz, Feb 20, 2006 IP
  8. scirceo

    scirceo Peon

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    #8
    if i took the photo, and am running a celebrity photo site (www.t4tx.com), can i sell sponsorships (just one line with a link to a website) on each page w/out getting the celebrity's permission?

    would i need to make it clear that the celebrity is not endorsing the sponsored link?

    i'm thinking along the lines of how baseball-reference.com does it

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/BOS/

    companies and fans sponsor pages.

    whaddayathink?

    --steve
     
    scirceo, Apr 3, 2006 IP
  9. browntwn

    browntwn Prominent Member

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    #9
    It is very simple, at least in the United States. If you took a photo, you own that photo and may use it as you wish. If you took photos of celebrities in public, then you absolutely have the right to use those photos.

    You can show all the photos with ads (sponsorships) around them. You cannot use the photo so it looks the celeb is affiliated or endorsing your site. (unless of course, it is a parody, then virtually everything is fair game)

    Your site makes it clear they are fan photos. I would not hesitate to put ads/sponsors on the pages.

    Oh yea, and to keep others from using your photos, I would watermark them with a © or at least a site name or logo. One last note, many concert venues specifically prohibit photography as part of the ticket license. If that was the case, then technically you would not have the right to take and profit from those photos.

    Worse case scenario, you get an email or letter asking you to remove image. If you do so promptly you shouldn't have any problems.

    This is general advice and is not to be construed as specific legal advice to you or anyone else. If you have additional concerns you should consult an attorney.

     
    browntwn, Apr 3, 2006 IP
  10. dotcomwoman

    dotcomwoman Banned

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    #10
    Aren't there any public domain celebrity photos available?
     
    dotcomwoman, Apr 3, 2006 IP
  11. BoA4eVa

    BoA4eVa Banned

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    #11
    so troublesom... no wonder they are making big money with their copy rights.. maybe i should set up a celebrities company :p
     
    BoA4eVa, Apr 4, 2006 IP
  12. scirceo

    scirceo Peon

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    #12
    >>Your site makes it clear they are fan photos. I would not hesitate to put ads/sponsors on the pages.

    That is my feeling on it. These are all photos taken during public performances of public people, so there shouldn't be a problem. I don't want to junk up the site, though, so just a line of text across the top would be all I want.

    >>Oh yea, and to keep others from using your photos, I would watermark them with a © or at least a site name or logo.

    I've considered doing putting the site URL on them, but it's a hassle.... Should do....

    >> One last note, many concert venues specifically prohibit photography as part of the ticket license. If that was the case, then technically you would not have the right to take and profit from those photos.

    I always check that and no worries there.

    Thanks for your considered answer.

    --Steve
     
    scirceo, Apr 4, 2006 IP
  13. websiteideas

    websiteideas Peon

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    #13
    Anyone know the answer to this question?

     
    websiteideas, Apr 7, 2006 IP
  14. browntwn

    browntwn Prominent Member

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    #14
    Yes, I believe that everything published before 1923 is now in the public domain. That goes for literary works as well as photographs. I'm sure you were interested in more modern works. But hopefully that is helpful.

    More information here:
    http://www.copyright.cornell.edu/training/Hirtle_Public_Domain.htm

     
    browntwn, Apr 7, 2006 IP
  15. DirtyDog

    DirtyDog Well-Known Member

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    #15
    Yeah you'll find plenty of public domain photos for your Abe Lincoln fan site.
     
    DirtyDog, Apr 11, 2006 IP
  16. grafixster

    grafixster Active Member

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    #16
    LOL..

    So, any updates on this information? I'm actually wanting to use celeb pics for a print magazine. Let's say a small section is expressing the buzz on Will Smiths new movie. Can I use a pic of him? It's a night life magazine, distribution is 10k local.

    Thanks
     
    grafixster, Dec 7, 2007 IP
  17. dougaddison

    dougaddison Peon

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    #17
    I wantto use a picture from http://photofunia.com/ of Paris Hilton holding a CD of mine and put it on my blog. I am clear it is just for fun and hse does not support my product. Do you see any problems with it?
     
    dougaddison, Apr 15, 2009 IP
  18. bunbunx2

    bunbunx2 Peon

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    #18
    you need permission i think.
     
    bunbunx2, Apr 22, 2009 IP
  19. mike323

    mike323 Active Member

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    #19
    Get a video of the celebrity up on your computer screen and take a snapshot of it. Then put it on your site. :)
     
    mike323, Feb 24, 2011 IP
  20. JerrickYeoh

    JerrickYeoh Active Member

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    #20
    it would be both. You need to get for approve from the celebrity and the photographer who is the owner of the picture. I know it may safe cost to get picture direct from others rather than hire a celebrity, buy if you do it for business purpose. Better you ask it for both.
    Unless you only use it for news and so on. If you use it to promote your product, then no choice that you need to get the approve and maybe need to paid some for that.
     
    JerrickYeoh, Mar 1, 2011 IP