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Old December 14th, 2008, 08:47 AM   #1
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Permission while shooting in public?

There are a lot of private video clips on the web. Some of them are artistic pieces of everyday situations and usually shot in the public. I wonder how
most shooters go about getting permission from the people they shoot in public?
What do you ask for? Do you ask BEFORE you shoot or AFTER? And if you donīt get around to ask for a permission, do you dare to post the footage on the web? I guess there are some universal guidelines to follow? But do they differ from country to country?

Anyone care to share their experiences?

-terje
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Old December 14th, 2008, 10:01 AM   #2
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I may be wrong but I don't believe that you need to get permission to shoot someone in a public place.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 10:02 AM   #3
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Generally, it has always been OK to shoot (film) people in a public place, some of last century's great photographers did exactly this. However, we are now in an age of political correctness and suspicious people, esspecially parents of young children, I think it would be both polite and prudent to ask permission and also let the people know what the intended use is going to be. I know stock libraries will not accept footage without a model release.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 11:30 AM   #4
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so many feature films have scenes shot gorilla style with long a zoom lens on a city street. The main character walking among the people. Clearly 100s of people who did not give permission.

They stage some of those to look like a gorilla shot, but you can always tell when it's real.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 11:42 AM   #5
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You are quite right, there are many other examples that we could mention, including on the beach shots. Here in the UK the TV companies seem to be obsessed with pixelating and blurring members of the public's faces. What a legacy we are leaving for future generations, imagine if all the footage shot since 1930 was also given this treatment, not to mention Cartier Bressons work - it is our loss
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Old December 14th, 2008, 12:12 PM   #6
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I love those shots too, the gorilla shots. There is a great little snapshot of Venice beach in the movie Zanadu (don't ask..LOL) the main character is skating down the sidewalk and they use a long zoom. I always like looking at all the people just enjoying the sunny day way back in 1980 or something.

We should ask Philp Bloom if he gets a release, almost all his shorts are just people in public.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 01:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik Phairas View Post
I love those shots too, the gorilla shots. There is a great little snapshot of Venice beach in the movie Zanadu (don't ask..LOL) the main character is skating down the sidewalk and they use a long zoom. I always like looking at all the people just enjoying the sunny day way back in 1980 or something.

We should ask Philp Bloom if he gets a release, almost all his shorts are just people in public.
Funny you should ask, I did put this question to Philip last September based on his Windsor Waltz film -

Just a simple question, but not meant to be taken the wrong way. Did you pay to use the music on your video clip, or do you have a licence for using music on the web?

I ask this because I too would like to use music tracks on my videos and although I have a large collection of Royalty free music, most of it is forgettable.

Regarding the video, especially the Windsor shoot. How do you get away with shooting (filmimg) people today, there seems to be so many do’s and don’ts and short of turning every person into Pixelated monsters I am not sure how we will be able to capture everday life people. Just imagine if way back in the early 1900 if photography was subjected to the same bans that are in force now, what a loss this would have been to historic pictures.

Keep up the good work, I have enjoyed looking at your work - hope to meet you on a press launch some day.

Regards Vincent

Philips reply

with people I just film until they ask me to stop. Sometimes I ask people if I do close ups

Regarding the music;

that piece of music i paid for royalty free. A lot I just use for non commercial use only.

URL to Windsor Waltz.

Philip Bloom Windsor Waltz
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Old December 14th, 2008, 01:55 PM   #8
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I like Phil's work a lot (and this is not a critisism of Phil) but just filming "until they ask me to stop" definitely does not constitute permission!!!!!

Recently I got challenged whilst filming kids in public in my home town's Apple Festival. This highly opinionated woman got very upset at me - even though I pointed out to her (when she eventually shut up) that they were MY KIDS! "But....But...there are other kids in the background".....

What can you do? I just put my camera away and enjoyed the rest of the day with my wife and kids.

Best bit was that my eldest daughter shortly afterwards WON the race this horrible woman was organising and then she had to present my daughter with a medal (gold, not real of course!). I just smirked...and later laughed for ages! This woman was NOT happy! Would have been nice to have had it on the EX3 though!

As others and Vincent have said, the UK is becoming a strange, overly politically correct place. Thank god for Top Gear! (great, great editing too!)

BTW, I think this thread is in the wrong section. I'm sure the mods will move it soon.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 03:11 PM   #9
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Vincent
Music is another issue. It is someone's copyright.
Andy
If it's an organised event then I don't think that's public and she had a point. Otherwise I would have told her to eff off (depending on how big her husband was ;-)
I don't think you need permission to film someone in public precisely because it's public. As far as know privacy is a right in private - not in public eg look at all the CCTV cameras.
Yes, this is in the wrong section.
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Old December 14th, 2008, 11:34 PM   #10
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I never ask a NO question:-)
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Old December 15th, 2008, 12:55 AM   #11
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I usually try to shoot in places where I know there will be less traffic. Also at times I shoot where I know people can see me; and if they choose to stroll in front of the camera, it's their perogative (misspelled, oh well). If they would be a main character in frame, then I ask, usually : )

JS
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Old December 15th, 2008, 02:49 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kajito Nagib View Post
I never ask a NO question:-)
Would that include "Do you mind if I shoot some footage of you?"
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Old December 15th, 2008, 03:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Gooderick View Post
If it's an organised event then I don't think that's public and she had a point. Otherwise I would have told her to eff off (depending on how big her husband was ;-)
Yes it was a public place! (Palace Green, opposite the West Door of Ely Cathedral) and heaving with people. Nice annual event and it was a lovely Autumn Saturday. I'm just too polite for my own good sometimes!

I would stress that I always ask someone if I'm hoping to take a shot specifically with them mostly in frame - as I did with the Woodturner who was the main feature in the eventual short - if anyone's interested the link is here: Apple Festival Woodturner

BTW, there were lots of others there on Place Green with video and still cameras too - that got "ignored" (just that mine was the biggest camera I guess!) :-)

I bet if I'd had my Sony HC1 she would not even have noticed - the Sony EX3 does stand out a bit in situations like this.
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Old December 15th, 2008, 12:47 PM   #14
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This is something I have struggled with Filming in public. I always worry that someone will get upset or question your reasons I know its silly but its always been the case that if it can happen it will. Another concern is the gear is worth a lot of money and if your on your own you cant watch everything. Funny whenever I do go out and film suddenly I become aware of people looking concerned in my direction as I size up the location. I went out and filmed at about 6:30 on a sunday morning and was approached by someone who told me he had the same setup at home. Every venture out seems like an adventure. Its always a talking point and always attracts attention. I wonder what people think when they see you? I think its much better if you can take an attractive lady with you that way she gets the attention and your accepted more..
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Old December 15th, 2008, 04:10 PM   #15
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I'm no authority on the matter, but if I understand it correctly (from my still photography stuff) that it is okay to shoot people 'in general' in public, but if you single out any particular individual, especially if they're doing something that may embarrass them, then it is not okay without permission. And you definitely need written permission if you single out an individual and associate the image(s) with any product or association, etc. But otherwise 'faceless' people in a crowd in a public place, I've understood it to be okay. Remember, 99% of the time I don't know what I'm talking about and this falls into the 99% category, ha! <-- disclaimer
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