Saturday, June 19, 2010

Photography and "The Buyout"

Photographers who know what they're talking about HATE the phrase "BUYOUT". It's like nails on a chalkboard. Why? Because, among other things, it's such an ambiguous word that means one thing to the photographer, another thing to the photographer's client, and yet another thing altogether to the photographer's client's client. The Picture Licensing Universal Coalition (PLUS) promotes against the use of the word because it can lead to misunderstandings. View "buyout" to learn more about it, which, they in part caution:

Buy Out is a slang term, often misinterpreted as a transfer of copyright ownership of a work from the copyright holder to the client or client's agent. In the absence of a specific copyright transfer agreement executed by the copyright holder there is no copyright transfer. If this term is used, an additional, precise list of rights granted or transferred should accompany any license.
Further, clients who ask (or demand) a buy out either are trying to pull a fast one on an unsuspecting photographer by getting the whole pie for the price of a slice, or, unfortunately, they have been screwed over by a photographer in the past and are now in defensive mode trying to protect themselves and their client from that happening again.

There's a good discourse on the subject over at A Photo Editor - Ask Anything – The Buyout - that's worth a read.
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