Model Release

The photographer said I could use modeling photos. Does that have to be in writing?

“Transfer of a right on a nonexclusive basis does not require a written agreement.”
U.S. Copyright Office, Circular 1

Digital Model Release

7/13/12: iStockphoto accepts releases and prefers Easy Release (also approved by Getty Images and Alamy). Also see: Adobe EchoSign, >Visual Media Release (blog). Case law upholding signatures: Barwick v. GEICO, Getty.

Note to self: This page needs to be combined with this page.

Model Releases

All images containing recognizable people require a model release. There are no exceptions. Look at the image and ask yourself ‘Could any of these people depicted recognize themselves in this picture?’ If so, you will need a model release. Sometimes the context of an image is enough to make a person recognizable, even if their face isn’t visible. We have provided detailed examples here of what kind of images require releases.

The most important things to remember are:

  • If the main subject of the image is a person — even if the person’s face is not visible — it will require a model release. Images of people photographed from behind or without their permission or awareness will generally not be acceptable.
  • If the photograph is of a minor (a child under the age of 18), a model release must be signed by a parent or legal guardian.
  • A complete model release must be uploaded with each file that requires one. If you’re uploading successive shots of the same model, the model release must be included with each image.
  • A model release must include the date the shoot took place.
  • A valid witness signature must appear on the model release. It must be from a third part — someone other than the photographer or the model/parent.
  • If the photo is of the photographer (a self portrait), a model release is still required. A model release for self portraits does not expire; you can have an unlimited date range on your self-portrait model release.
  • iStock does not acceptly created orly signed model releases. This includes using script fonts as signatures, e-signatures, or scanning signatures and then pasting them into the release.

Source: iStockphotos, Legal Requirements.

“Any image of an identifiable person must be accompanied by a model release. Model releases are available on our site and must be submittedly; we do not accept faxed, mailed, or any hard copy releases. For submissions containing nude content of artistic value, the model must look at least 25 years of age and the submission must be accompanied by a photo ID of the model. The decision to accept or reject an image containing nudity will be made according to the sole discretion of Shutterstock. Never submit any explicit material. Submissions must not contain violence, x-rated content, or any illegal content according to US law.”
Shutterstock, Submitter Guidelines.

minors

“Submissions depicting a minor must be accompanied by a model release that was signed by that minor’s parent or legal guardian. If you do not have a model release and your image is newsworthy or culturally significant, we will accept the image for editorial use only — meaning that it will not be available for any commercial use. Submissions that are generic family snapshots or other portraits are not newsworthy and will not be accepted as editorial.”
Shutterstock, Submitter Guidelines.

“Any image of an identifiable person must be accompanied by a model release. Model releases are available on our site and must be submittedly; we do not accept faxed, mailed, or any hard copy releases. For submissions containing nude content of artistic value, the model must look at least 25 years of age and the submission must be accompanied by a photo ID of the model. The decision to accept or reject an image containing nudity will be made according to the sole discretion of Shutterstock. Never submit any explicit material. Submissions must not contain violence, x-rated content, or any illegal content according to US law.”
Shutterstock, Submitter Guidelines.

minors

“Submissions depicting a minor must be accompanied by a model release that was signed by that minor’s parent or legal guardian. If you do not have a model release and your image is newsworthy or culturally significant, we will accept the image for editorial use only — meaning that it will not be available for any commercial use. Submissions that are generic family snapshots or other portraits are not newsworthy and will not be accepted as editorial.”
Shutterstock, Submitter Guidelines.

Next: Property Release »

Comments


Reply by Aquarias

June 12, 2013

How does this apply if you purchased the photos from a girl from a foriegn country they were her private property and emailed to you after purchase ?


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