What should I charge? at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Taking Care of Business

Taking Care of Business
The pen and paper aspects of DV -- put it in writing!


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old December 19th, 2003, 09:43 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Barcelona
Posts: 312
What should I charge?

This one is a little long so be patient.

BACKGROUND:

A few months ago, a friend asked me to help him make a documentary of a rock festival that was happening in his hometown.
I got there with my gear (XM-2 and accesories).. and two other guys with their stuff.. one of them with a big nice DVX-100 and the other just a small consumer Sony...
We shot all day long... Although I made about 8 tapes... (thatīs 3 more than the "Big Guy"... and 5 more that the "little guy").

Anyway it was supposed to be an "ART" thing that my friend was doing to send to festivals or something, kind of like a woodstock documentary... just smaller and cheaper...


THE PROBLEM:

A few days ago I found out, by third parties I might add, that my friend and the "Big Guy" had edited separate copies of the concerts of each band and they were selling them. Also I heard (and saw) they made 250 copies of a "Best Of" the festival and are seling them for 15 Euros...

I was obviously left out of this little business... The Video I saw was at least half done with my footage... and of course I feel used, and dissapointed at my friend.. although my name appears in the credits as First Cammera or something like that.. I still feel cheated.. If Iīd known he was selling I would have not worked for free.

I didnīt sign anything... so I know that I canīt do anything about this (donīt want either), ... but here comes..

THE QUESTIONs:

1. - If I had been "Invited" to this little business, by a percentage of the earnings kind of deal..
What should Iīve asked for... being that I was the main camera. ?

2. - How much (aprox) do you guys charge (or would charge) for doing this... meaning going to an event with your gear, shoot all day long give the "payer" the tapes, and go home.
Excluded food and transportation... I know how to charge that :-)
__________________
Messenger Boy : The Thessalonian you're fighting, he's the biggest man I've ever seen. I wouldn't want to fight him.
Achilles : That is why no one will remember your name.
Federico Dib is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 19th, 2003, 10:39 PM   #2
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posts: 8,308
Hi
Here is my point of view.
First off, I'm not sure what the laws are in your area, but from what I understand, if you don't have a contract saying anything, the footage you shoot belongs to you. If you agreed to shoot it for a documentary, and that purpose only, and were involved in it for that reason only, and he is using your footage to make money in a different way, then he is stealing your footage.
If you are sure you can prove that he actualy used your footage, than I would count up the percentage of the footage on the tape, and DEMAND that percent of the gross profit (money made before expenses). If 50% of the footage in their video is yours, then demand 7.5 Euros time 250 copies for a total of $1875 Euros.
He'll probably say no, or try to talk you down to a lower figure (if he is smart). If he offers the lower figure, you might take it. If he says no outright, go to a lawyer and sue him.
Consider the amount punitive damage for him taking your material and screwing you over.

If you wanted a fair amount, then I would either calculate the time and cost you put into shooting, I'd base it on $500 for a day rate, plus expenses, and tell him you want that much for the rights to use your footage. If they had asked you to be part of it in the first place, I would have asked for 33% of the profit.
__________________
Need to rent camera gear in Vancouver BC?
Check me out at camerarentalsvancouver.com
Dylan Couper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 20th, 2003, 06:12 AM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Barcelona
Posts: 312
Well, I like your point of view... those were my initial thouhgts, (maybe include a few kicks and a nice punch right to the nose).

I donīt know the laws in my area either (Iīm new here)... but I do know how much a lawyer might charge... and itīs not going to be worth the time nor the money for a few reasons:

- The whole business is "underground"... so no receipts or anything. I donīt think they even have written permission (release forms?) from the bands, record labels or the people that appear.

- How could I prove the footage is mine? At the end of the day I gave him all the tapes. I know wittnesses can tell where was I shooting from, etc... but I think that will be a little too complicated.. even more because it was my friendīs hometown, and witnesses are his friends and family.. Iīd just play the greedy foreigner.

- Because he is not going to make any money... I know him.. he was my friend after all.. and he couldnīt sell a glass of water in the desert. He will end up giving for free half of the copies...

And this morning I saw a copy of the video... for 15 Euros.. itīs a rip off... Blown out reds, very BAD audio mixing.. thereīs a band sound that is only on the right channel, so mono Tvīs or VCR donīt have that sound, etc..

Iīm pretty sure they now are asking themselves why they didnīt asked me to be a part of it... they know I would have taken care of those "little" details...

I havenīt talked to him directly... but when I do I will ask him for my part... just to see what he says, and what kind of person he is... But I donīt think Iīll see any money.. (heīd probably loose some at the end). One thing is for sure.. I am not working with him anymore, and he is allready regreting his greed, and not taking "the tech guy" in.

But thanx for the reply, next time Iīll be more carefull.

And "$500 for a day rate"?
I think I canīt be there quite yet... BUt I might start readjusting my rates... I know local market is blown out... but I still have my "day job", and my dignity.
__________________
Messenger Boy : The Thessalonian you're fighting, he's the biggest man I've ever seen. I wouldn't want to fight him.
Achilles : That is why no one will remember your name.
Federico Dib is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 20th, 2003, 06:06 PM   #4
Hawaiian Shirt Mogul
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: northern cailfornia
Posts: 1,261
"it was supposed to be an "ART" thing that my friend was doing to send to festivals or something, kind of like a woodstock documentary... just smaller and cheaper... "

the problem you have is the " send to festivals or SOMETHING" . well you gave them all your tapes and now he is doing the OR SOMETHING. seeing how you all really did it for fun as you have no release form the bands you really can't sell em (legal) .. so they are selling bootleg video's and you want a piece. now that might be a interesting court hearing?? could a judge award you $$ on illegals sales of bootleg concert ??
you have to speak to your friends. ask em for a a share of the proceeds - if it goes into long discussion then ask for a flat rate. if all else fails you can always contact the bands manager, record distributors etc and tell em where to find the video for sale???

IMO when i give somebody original tapes ( i do not keep copies) for a project with NO written agreement it is theirs to keep - do as they wish and i take NO CREDIT ... i just helping out friends for free ...

off hand - who supplied the TAPES ??
Don Donatello is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 20th, 2003, 08:06 PM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Barcelona
Posts: 312
<<<-- Originally posted by Don Donatello : "....
the problem you have is the " send to festivals or SOMETHING" . -->>

Well it was just the way I wrote.. I should have said "It was going to be a documentary to send to festivals. Period". There was never any talk about selling. Not in my face anyway...

<<<-- ....so they are selling bootleg video's and you want a piece. now that might be a interesting court hearing?? could a judge award you $$ on illegals sales of bootleg concert ??..... -->>>
Iīve been laughing for a while picturing the judges face..
(mmmm.. this is not USA... actually this is Spain.. and "Spain is different".. so who knows)

I could sew them for using my LAWFULL Artistic work in an ilegal way, and thus, endangering my reputation, or something like that...
Allthough we had permission and credentials of the festival organisation.. they knew we were making a documentary, I just think the bands record lables will not like that video and the way itīs being sold.

But as I say before itīs not worth the legal hassle anyway, they are not going to sell much... and if they do.. they probably get in trouble as one of the bands (that I know) is pretty big and has an International Record Label behind. For me is just a matter of ethics and friendship.. and of course I posted here to try and learn as much as I can from this situation, and your opinions.

<<<-- ....IMO when i give somebody original tapes ( i do not keep copies) for a project with NO written agreement it is theirs to keep - do as they wish and i take NO CREDIT ... i just helping out friends for free ...-->>>

I agree completely. I was helping a friend for free... but If I should have known he was planning on making a profit... then I would have asked for either a Flat Price.. or a percentage of the earnings...

<<<-- off hand - who supplied the TAPES ?? -->>>
He did... Even If Iīm helping a friend for free... If I donīt get the tapes, transportation, food, cafeine and a couple of beers.. then I donīt do it.. All my friends know this... as this is what I offer my friends when I need help.
__________________
Messenger Boy : The Thessalonian you're fighting, he's the biggest man I've ever seen. I wouldn't want to fight him.
Achilles : That is why no one will remember your name.
Federico Dib is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 20th, 2003, 08:50 PM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
Hmmmm.
A lot of legal issues to consider, but my advice.

Write it off as a hard lesson and move on. From your description, you don't want to own part of a lawsuit in copyright infringement.

The lessons learned -

This guy is not your friend.

NOTHING is understood unless it is written down.

No one gets what they deserve, only what they negotiate.
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > Taking Care of Business

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:30 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network