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More about filming the audience.

In this Asked & Answered video, I answer some follow up questions from last week's topic.3d figure question mark

So just a few minutes after the video I did about filming the audience came out, Jeffrey wrote in with a follow up question he says…

“How about publicity rights of an audience at a community news event where the final video of composition has a commercial purpose. But where the audience is not individually featured and not likely to be easily identified. No ticket, no releases, no printed warning just a bullhorn announcement to a chime in a slogan to the cameras”.

Well okay, first I wanna clarify couple of things about the meaning of commercial. From what Jeffrey describe, it does sounds like it’s a commercial because that's slogan thing. But generally just because the video or the film that you’re making is available for sale, the tickets are for sale doesn't make it commercial for purposes of a right of publicity in else as you see. If that was the case every single newspaper which is available for sale would lose the first number of protection of the right to talk about people using their names and so on.

That's the basic of what we mean by commercial. Now in the question here, if they’re not individually feature, I don't know maybe just a crowd shot or something like that but everybody is ask to shout out, then probably not gonna have a right of publicity issue but because they done it voluntarily they know they're being film and all of that. But still most companies wouldn't do it that way, they would insist on getting an extra release from each and every person there. In fact there no tickets, no releases, no printed warning and in fact there's gonna public place and there's a news were the event shouldn't be an issue.

Now in that Disneyland advertising were they after the end of the big sporting event one of the big stars of the game is ask “hey you just won the super bowl” or “you've just won the NBA playoffs what you gonna do now?” And he says “Hey I'm going to Disneyland”. That is very clearly a paid endorsement and those guy do sign paperwork and they do have written documents authorizing that use of their name and likeness and you know the fact that they are celebrity. But for the averages of audience member or someone is in the crowd at an event to be filmed, specially if it out in public no expectation of privacy, no expectation of being able to stop somebody from using that footage for none commercial purposes. It's only when you cross the line into advertising or selling for a particular product and where that person's likeness or name is easily discernible or reasonably discernible, that’s where you give in to write a publicity situation.

Thanks for the question Jeffrey, and thank you for jumping out so quickly. I like to be able to give this follow up answers right away. If you like this video please subscribe to my YouTube channel so you don’t miss any. And if you have a question yourself, hop on over to

Thanks very much, I’ll see you on the next one.


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