Experts Rights Clearance/Licensing – Music, Film & TV clips, Celebrities, Photos, Art, Books


Clearing a photograph is a two-level process:

Anyone who uses a photograph for any reason must obtain permission from the owner of the photograph, usually either the photographer or a stock house. Magazines, newspapers, and wire services also often own photographs.

You must then address the issue of what is depicted in the photograph.

Is it a person – do that person’s rights have to be cleared?

Is it trademarked (buildings such as the Chrysler and Empire State Building are now protected by trademark), a logo, a brand, a work of art, or a scene from a film that requires separate clearance?

TIP: Do not presume that permission from a stock photo house implies permission to use the likeness of any person, brand name, logo, or building shown in the photo.
TIP: What rights you have to clear for whatever is depicted in the photograph depends on how you are using the photograph. Get expert advice to avoid paying an unnecessary fee.
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