UK Copyright or permitted use law

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tracey farmer

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i’m a bit rusty on the old subject of copyright law in uk regarding photos.

If i have taken photos of people where they are identifiable in a club / pub/ or public place- and the photos have been taken over 20 years ago- where do i stand with getting the images exhibited?
the images aren’t used in way that they sell products- but there is no copyright signed.

what is the general rule about copyright?
i have loads of images in my archive that i would like to exhibit/ display- where do i stand with legalities?
thanks
 
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benveniste

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I'm far from an expert in UK law, but I don't think copyright law should be your concern here. You own the copyright to the photographs unless you took them as a work for hire for someone else.

That said, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act photographs of living individuals are considered personal data. I can not offer you any guidance on whether your particular shots would be so considered -- it would depend on specifics such as the event, the venue, and how many people are depicted. I suggest you contact an expert rather than relying on the advice of random internet posters. You can safely assume I'm a random internet poster.

 

momus

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I'm not sure what else you would need to know, but here's some info on the subject. The tricky part may be that you took the photos within a commercial establishment, not in a public space. A bar or pub is the same as a home or gallery in that respect.

The key sentence appears to be "If you wish to take pictures on private land – for example, at someone’s house or in an art gallery – you need the permission of the landowner."

 
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tracey farmer

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thank you- i had permission from the land owner- we put a notice on the door of the pub as a film crew were there the previous week & did the same. its more about if i want this work that was shot in the 70’s to appear in a gallery- what are my rights? what are people in the photos rights?

eg if a photo was at a crowd protest- there would be no way they could ask a crowd of 100 to all sign copyright waivers- and i guess as they are in public this is fine.
i have read before about copyright- and to my understanding as long as you own the negative/ took the photo and your photo isn’t selling anything like a product/ endorsement - eg seen in a editorial way- ie in a magazine / or gallery then this is ok.
can anyone confirm
this? thanks
 

Arcadia4

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'Copyright' isn't the issue with images of people (since a persons face cant be subject of copyright). The need for a model release is to do with 'Commercial' rather than 'Editorial' usage.
If its Commerical use (endorsing a product) , the need for a model/location release arises because of future risk of either payment being demanded or defamation, privacy, publicity rights being claimed by the subject. There is an extensive FAQ by the Editorial Photographers of the UK see esp.( 'why might I need a model release') and (Is it legal to take photos of people without asking?) also about Copyright.

For copyright the British Press Photographers Association also has detailed summary of the law. Its worth noting current rules are from the 1988 Act. A section details the rules prior to this (1956 act being the previous one).

Another point is to ensure any exhibition captions are 'neutral' to avoid libel claims.
 
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tracey farmer

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'Copyright' isn't the issue with images of people (since a persons face cant be subject of copyright). The need for a model release is to do with 'Commercial' rather than 'Editorial' usage.
If its Commerical use (endorsing a product) , the need for a model/location release arises because of future risk of either payment being demanded or defamation, privacy, publicity rights being claimed by the subject. There is an extensive FAQ by the Editorial Photographers of the UK (see 'why might I need a model release') and also about Copyright more generally.

For copyright the British Press Photographers Association also has detailed summary of the law. Its worth noting current rules are from the 1988 Act. A section details the rules prior to this (1956 act being the previous one).

Another point is to ensure any exhibition captions are 'neutral' to avoid libel claims.

thank you so much- this is so helpful 😊
 

MattKing

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Thread title edited.
 

AgX

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I'm far from an expert in UK law, but I don't think copyright law should be your concern here.

Over here in Germany we have it for 115 years about the "right on ones own image".

The interesting aspect in this case is that the photos were taken decades ago and the question arises whether any newer british legislation on this topic would apply retrograde.
 
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pentaxuser

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Tracey I hope that someone with a clear knowledge of U.K law of, and experience in handling such matters is a member here and can respond. If there isn't then maybe a chat with an expert in this field with respect to U.K. law would be beneficial if you are at all worried about what you think may be the possibility of legal repercussions.

pentaxuser
 
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tracey farmer

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hi all-
so my work is appearing in an exhibition later in the year- i will be selling promotional prints, mugs & t shirts. so there seems to be no issue with exhibiting work as the people featured are not endorsing a product- eg the photo isn’t being used for the latest coke campaign
where do i stand regarding promotional products that support the exhibition? thanks
 

momus

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Photographers face legal issues that we never give a minute's thought to when I work as a painter/artist. No one is going to be concerned about their image there, it's all an interpretation.

Unfortunately, this sort of legalese is going to be totally different in each country. It helps to keep things "real" w/ this though.

If I have a photograph of someone, or a photograph of a bunch of someone's, as long as I'm not presenting them in a questionable manner or showing them in a bad light, I'm not going to be concerned about any of this.
 

AgX

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Photographers face legal issues that we never give a minute's thought to when I work as a painter/artist. No one is going to be concerned about their image there, it's all an interpretation.

Interesting thought. Though over here the legal restriction covers all forms of depiction, not just photography. But then, at any form of depiction, works of art are excluded from such restrictions.

Well, then then one may argue what makes a work art....
 
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