OT : Release Petition

goodtimej wrote on 7/7/2010, 10:59 AM
Hey, just looking for some quick advice here. I put on an event where people go into the public to film things going on that sometimes involve members of the public. From what I understand, in order to show "the public's" face, I have to have each person sign a waiver. Not a prob.
What I am wondering is if there is a way to make a petition style waiver to make it easier for the people shooting the footage? Basically something with the legalese on top with a bunch of spots for signatures below. The point of this being not to have to have a bunch of waivers with one per person filmed, but rather a few that holds a bunch of names. Any ideas?


musicvid10 wrote on 7/7/2010, 11:14 AM
You can write anything you want.
But whether it holds any legal applicability is between you and your attorney, and only a fool would offer legal advice on a public forum.

That being said, the one big potential hangup I can foresee is that the client is always presumed to have the right to keep a copy of any agreement he/she has signed, but having other parties' signatures and personal information present would suggest a possible invasion of their personal privacy and safety. The effect of sharing private information among strangers is that you may be turning a private document into a public one, which opens a whole new can of worms.
TheHappyFriar wrote on 7/7/2010, 12:20 PM
not sure if this is legal, but couldn't you download a form that already exists (IE the 48 hour film forms) & just change them for your use? They've had lawyers look theirs over so I'm pretty sure it's relatively good. :)
farss wrote on 7/7/2010, 5:11 PM
"From what I understand, in order to show "the public's" face, I have to have each person sign a waiver"

People in a public place do not have the right to an "expectation of privacy". The law goes somewhat further, if you're viewable from a public place the same applies. If you're a celebrity it can pay to be careful taking a shower or sunbathing in your birthday suit.

The exception is use of someone's image for commercial purposes. That doesn't mean making a movie for profit, that means using their image to promote a product.

Of course if you're asking anyone to "perform" for you then all bets are off.

dibbkd wrote on 7/7/2010, 7:25 PM
Thanks Bob, I was actually going to comment on this myself. Such as I was recently in NYC and filmed a BUNCH of people in Times Square, Rockefeller Center, etc.

It wasn't commercial, just my own personal home videos, and obviously you couldn't expect to get everyone (anyone) to sign a waiver for that.

On the other hand, I did a video for a pediatric therapy clinic and had the each parent sign a waiver that their child could be used in the video. It was a page long waiver, I found some of it online and edited it to fit my needs.
musicvid10 wrote on 7/7/2010, 9:05 PM
If the video is going to be reproduced, distributed, broadcast, uploaded, or displayed outside your living room, signed releases are the way to go. A million people might not complain, but the one who does is going to make your existence miserable.
Rory Cooper wrote on 7/8/2010, 12:45 AM
For events we have a legal sandwich board notice that stands 1.2 m high and reads

Please be advised that this event will be recorded on film

By virtue of attending this event, you shall automatically be consenting to your image being captured on film.
The recorded footage will be used by -----clients name----at its own will.

Thank You and the film crew logo as well as event organizers logo

The boards have a white background and color bands on as well we set levels and color from this before each event and pan from this to event for proof that they were laid out.
We have a few, each cameraman has to have one as part of the gear

I have had the very odd occasion of a couple ducking and hiding their faces for whatever reason but you will never use that footage anyway
One day I might just compile a short of these for youtube…could be interesting.
richard-courtney wrote on 7/8/2010, 6:59 AM
I'd stick with individual signatures to be on the safe side.
It kind of says the signer thought about the contract instead of I followed
the person in front of me.

richard-amirault wrote on 7/8/2010, 11:40 AM
For events we have a legal sandwich board notice that stands 1.2 m high and reads

I actually have seen a similar board at a WGBH (PBS, Boston) outdoor shoot.
filmy wrote on 7/10/2010, 12:42 PM
What Rory said is, at least for the U.S, the most common approach for shoots where there will be large groups of people. For concerts it is alo common to have somebody who walks out on stage (Promoter, local DJ from the station sponsoring the event, Someone from the label) right before the show starts and says the same thing, while the cameras are rolling. If it is a shoot that has been planned you may even have a basic disclaimer on the tickets, posters and any other advertising.

For more "one on one" type issues a signed release is always the best way to go. One project I worked on I filmed a bunch of cameos to be used as "intros"and for that I used a "petition" like release form that you ask about.