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People in public places require a release?

Bob Myers , Jul 18, 2003; 12:53 a.m.

If one visits a mall and shoots areas that include people, do you need to get releases from any of them? How about when doing "street shooting?" Or in public buildings/places? I'm talking about the random people who happen to be in the photo *and* can be easily recognized, not people who are positioned there by the photographer.


Tom Menegatos , Jul 18, 2003; 04:37 a.m.

YOu don't need a release to take a photo in a public place but your intended usage determines if you need a release or not. If you want to use it in an editorial or fine art way you don't need a release. If you are using it in an advertisement or on a commercial product you need a release. These are the general rules.

Jerry Stillwell , Jul 18, 2003; 05:51 a.m.

If you're shooting in a mall, you will almost surely need a property release from the management as well (if you intend to use the images for commercial applications)

peter nelson , Jul 18, 2003; 11:13 a.m.

Good grief - WHY does this confusion come up again and AGAIN?!

A model release is never required to TAKE a photo of someone (although that doesn't mean you don't need permission, since photogs themselves may be banned in some places).

Model releases are about the


of a photo, i.e., where or how it is to be published. Certain uses (e.g., PJ) don't require a release; other ones, (e.g., commercial) do.

As far as a mall goes, a mall is not a public place. Whether you can take pictures there at all is at the pleasure of the mall owners. Ditto with the use of any such images.

Bert Krages , Jul 18, 2003; 11:26 a.m.

Even more confusion. From the legal perspective releases are not required for images of property (except those protected by copyright). Although various property owners such as the Pebble Beach Country Club, New York Stock Exchange, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame have filed or threatened lawsuit, none of them prevailed in court (some cases were settled). While a mall owner is generally within its rights to prohibit photography while on its property, you are not required to get a release to either photograph or publish images of the property.

Lee Shively , Jul 26, 2003; 08:29 p.m.


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