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Exclusive, non-exclusive and copyright license hand over rates

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Jack Benson
Exclusive, non-exclusive and copyright license hand over rates
on Feb 23, 2012 at 7:47:33 pm

Forgive me if I am wrong, but the current way I've been led to believe is correct when selling creative work (such as music, art work etc.) is there are three main ways of selling your work:

Exclusive license:
One in which the client receives a license to use the work on one occasion (i.e. in one production) where the maker cannot use it in other circumstances.

Non-exclusive license:
Where the client receives a license to use the work on one occasion and where the maker may resell licenses to other clients.

Copyright hand over:
Full copyright is sold to the client. The maker can no longer use the work without the permission of the copyright owner.


I mainly ask if this is correct in a circumstance where a client asks for their logo to be animated. Are these the options I should offer?


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Richard Herd
Re: Exclusive, non-exclusive and copyright license hand over rates
on Feb 24, 2012 at 6:22:13 am

Are you in the US?

Animating a logo is more than likely a work for hire agreement. It's a one time deal. They own everything, for a fair price of course.

One other nit: logos are not copyrights; they are trademarks, ergo, the work is a priori derivative.

Bottom line: you need to be paid a substantial sum. 50% upfront. Nice clean contract. Then you show your deliverable with timecode on it, so the client can critique and offer changes by referencing the TC (which also means it can't be used). Then, when they agree it's finished, they can send you full payment. Then you can deliver the product.

I learned this the hard way: be sure the contract includes a very exact termination clause. That is, in five years, when they feel the animation is stale, they need to start a new deal structure.


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John Baumchen
Re: Exclusive, non-exclusive and copyright license hand over rates
on Mar 1, 2012 at 10:01:26 pm

The only time it's 'likely' to be a work for hire is if the contract specifically states that it's a work for hire. Absent a specific clause stating that the job is a work for hire, the maker owns all copyrights. Period.


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Bill Davis
Re: Exclusive, non-exclusive and copyright license hand over rates
on Feb 27, 2012 at 5:12:35 am

Thinking about these forms of contract will probably be a good start, but in more practical terms - all contracts are just written agreements between parties and as such, there's not really a "standard" that works in all cases for all uses.

The examples you're talking about sound to me like they're based on stock footage and stock photography agreements, but I haven't found that much consistency in typical "work for hire" agreements I've dealt with over my career.

Essentially, you can write up anything, with any terms, and for any length of time you like. You can assign all right, some rights, or hardly any rights. And as long as the other party agrees to it - you have a written agreement that's going to be better than a verbal agreement and a handshake.

But unless you work with an Intellectual property trained attorney who's being paid to analyze your particular situation and write specific language that protects your interests, any contract will likely have "holes" in it that can come back to snap you.

FWIW.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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