BUSINESS AND MARKETING: Business and Marketing Forum Business and Marketing Articles

Another Copyright/Permission question

COW Forums : Business & Marketing

<< PREVIOUS   •   FAQ   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
Greg Ball
Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 6:07:48 pm

I have a potential restaurant client who wants to cut a montage together using movie clips and music that are related to their Mexican restaurant theme. My question is do they need copyright permission to do this? Do I need them to either provide that copyright proof/permission to me, or can they just sign a contract assuming all responsibility for that permission, releasing me of any wrong doing?

It's always sketchy as to who is responsible. Any thoughts?


Return to posts index

Richard Herd
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 7:15:03 pm

Can't do it without paying a very hefty license fee.


Return to posts index

Emre Tufekci S.O.A.
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 7:45:43 pm

"can they just sign a contract assuming all responsibility for that permission, releasing me of any wrong doing?"

That probably won't hold up in court as you know what you are doing would be illegal. It's like getting a "signed waiver" from your friend who asked you to drive you to a liquor store so he can rob it.

reference:

Complicity, also known as aiding and abetting, is the act of being an accomplice. An accomplice is someone who helps in, or in some states merely encourages, the commission of a crime. Courts sometimes refer to such a person as an aider or an abettor. This person did not commit the crime, but his or her actions helped enable someone else to do so.

Emre Tufekci
http://www.productionpit.com



Return to posts index


Todd Terry
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 8:26:47 pm

Emre is exactly right.

A similar analogy that I often use when clients want to "assume the responsibility" for illegal music use (which we refuse, of course):
Let's say I borrow your car, and get caught speeding. I can't tell the cop, "It's ok, this is Greg's car, I have his permission. He even gave me this note that says if I get stopped speeding just send the ticket to him." It doesn't work that way.

I'd strongly suggest that you come up with and/or suggest a completely different concept for this client. While the spot that you envision might be cool... it would be a paperwork/rights/negotiations nightmare. And the cost would be astronomical, even for a local commercial. You'd be getting up into national spot budget territory.

I'm willing to bet that the current crop of DirecTV spots that use footage from old movies (including the current tasteless resurrection of the late Chris Farley from "Tommy Boy") are paying well in the six-figures range for each movie to license that footage.



T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






Return to posts index

Greg Ball
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 9:59:52 pm

I agree with you guys, I'm just looking for something to tell this potential client. I've always been big on obeying copyright laws..

By the way Todd, this isn't for an add spot, it's for a restaurant to play inside while customers eat. Not that it matters much.

Thanks guys!



Return to posts index

Mark Suszko
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 10:23:03 pm

There's no free ride on this. Well, if you can find public domain footage that fills the bill, that's a different story.

If you re-staged and re-shot famous scenes as parody, there is *some* chance it would pass under fair use, but fair use is not a free pass either. Fair Use is what you tell the judge after it has gone thru the trial process and you've been found guilty of using the protected image without permission, at that point a judge decides if "Fair Use" applies and exonerates you. But you don't ever want to have to go that distance. Even though you are not charging to show it, in a way you are, because people have to pay the restaurant to sit there and eat while this plays. Money is changing hands as part of being able to view the product and that's what a court will look at.

An Italian restaurant was hosting "Soprano's Nights" where they just had the show on a big screen in the dining room, unaltered. They got a takedown notice. Another Italian Restaurant ran loop tapes of Sinatra hits as background music without paying the licensing fees. They got shut down.

A fun charity fundraiser where people sang along to a screening of "The Sound of Music" a la "Rocky Horror" - also shut down tighter than Julie Andrews' vocal cords. You can use those true life cases to show your client that you're looking out for them by warning of shaky legal grounds for the request.

It will be your choice to comply with the client or turn the job down. 99 times out of a hundred, you might even get away with it. But that hundredth time could become very expensive to you indeed. Is this one job really paying enough to be worth risking your car, your house, your business on?

Here's where you get to be the hero and come up with an alternate idea that still meets the ultimate goal but does it within the rules of the game. And best of all, you can bill for it.


Return to posts index


Todd Terry
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 5, 2009 at 10:35:31 pm

[Mark Suszko] "...shut down tighter than Julie Andrews' vocal cords."

Cruel, Mark! So cruel!

(but ok, I laughed anyway)





T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






Return to posts index

Bruce Bennett
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 7, 2009 at 6:00:08 pm

[Greg Ball] "By the way Todd, this isn't for an add spot, it's for a restaurant to play inside while customers eat. Not that it matters much."

Wrong. Reproducing copyrighted material without permission is illegal regardless if it is used for broadcast or non-broadcast use. Some good lawyers will even define and convince courts that “playing in public places” is broadcast use.

Good Luck!
Bruce


Bruce Bennett
Bennett Marketing & Media Production, LLC

Creative Inspiration
Documentaries for those who love to create … and to be inspired.


Return to posts index

Marcello Mazzilli
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 7, 2009 at 11:01:32 pm

What if the clients says the video is for "internal" use? Is the videomaker still responsible for the use of music?

siRoma di Marcello Mazzilli
Corporate video productions in Italy
http://www.siroma.com


Return to posts index


Todd Terry
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 8, 2009 at 1:02:45 am

[Marcello Mazzilli] "What if the clients says the video is for "internal" use? Is the videomaker still responsible for the use of music?"

Yes.

The perceived damages to the rights holders might not be as much... but snagging unpaid-for music or unpaid-for video footage for internal usage is no "less illegal" than broadcast.


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






Return to posts index

David Roth Weiss
Re: Another Copyright/Permission question
on Nov 6, 2009 at 9:50:45 pm

[Todd Terry] " the current tasteless resurrection of the late Chris Farley from "Tommy Boy""

Todd,

I'm really glad you mentioned that and that I'm not the only one who feels that way. I'm no big fan of Chris Farley BTW, but when I saw that spot I was profoundly appalled. When Robert Zemeckis put Forest Gump in the frame with a few dead presidents, it was in the context of the story, and it was even touching. However, using a cornball moment with poor Chris Farley to sell product just reeks of exploitation.

Apparently David Spade is defending the commercial. Joe Dirt had him in the cellar already, but he just dropped to a new all-time low in my book.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.


Return to posts index

<< PREVIOUS   •   VIEW ALL   •   PRINT   •   NEXT >>
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]