What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage?
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Topic: What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage?

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    Default What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage?

    My current project is having a subject narrate a monologue about war and politics. Now I can't go out and get war footage on my own, so I thought I would just stock footage, but not sure what the laws are when using stock footage of war and political activity.

    Plus is there any places where I can get royalty free such footage? I haven't been able to find a lot that is high quality online. What do you think?

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    Junior Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Elmotuasam Aziz's Avatar
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    I had a one year membership on a site called videoblocks.com where I remember seeing war footage, but mostly either dramatized versions of American civil war or old footage of WWI, Vietnam etc... I think in general stock footage falls under the categories of whether you want to use them for personal use or for commercial use and their prices will vary accordingly. However, I'm sure there are sites where you can get free war footage but not sure of the quality. Also I think it all depends on where and how you will be screening your film or distribution factors, for instance, most festivals will require that you own the copyright to everything in your film or have a license to use copyrighted material in your film. Also I think raw footage which is over 70 years old falls under the category of fair use because they become historical records, I could be mistaken though, if you plan to distribute your film or use it for commercial purposes it's always a good idea to seek legal advice from an entertainment lawyer or one who specializes in copyright laws, as copyright laws can be tricky and just because one would think content falls under 'fair use' does not mean that you have the right to use it, it can get complex when trying to determine if it falls under fair use or not, a lawyer will be needed to create an analysis based on your individual project. Also, I don't know about the laws where you're at, but here we can use content taken from news channels in archival films as long as the viewer knows exactly where the content came from, meaning one cannot crop out the logo of the news channel. But again don't take my word for it, do the research based on your project or seek legal advice. I remember running across a lawyer's channel on YouTube where he answers these kinds of questions free of charge unless the situation requires deep analysis.


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    Okay thanks. I am actually directing this project for someone else, so not I will have to ask them what they want to do and how much money they will want to spend on a lawyer, since they are costly and all.

    Thanks.


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    Junior Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Elmotuasam Aziz's Avatar
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    Super Moderator   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? mara's Avatar
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    Every stock footage site has their own rules, regulations, and fee structure. The law is: if it's THEIR stock footage, then you pay their fees. If they don't charge, you don't have to pay.

    Check out my blog on my experiences as an indie screenwriter and producier:
    http://moreorlessonmovies.blogspot.com/

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    Senior Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Walter B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mara View Post
    Every stock footage site has their own rules, regulations, and fee structure. The law is: if it's THEIR stock footage, then you pay their fees. If they don't charge, you don't have to pay.
    This!
    You need no lawyer for this, because you are not getting some complicated contract, nor are you looking for a loop hole.
    Getting stock footage is not a legal proces: it is a business transaction.


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    Senior Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Steve Olander's Avatar
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    When you want to know something, the world is at your finger tips. All the information is on the internet. That's how all of us learned. When you want to know something research it. Research is not just something you do for a paper in school. You don't need to ask other people. If you want to know something, find out. Learn. You will get more accurate information and much more of it, and thus a better understanding. If you research something you will gain an understanding of it to a certain degree. Then you can ask questions about it from a background of some understanding so that you can understand the answer.


    Steve


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    Pro Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Mick Scarborough's Avatar
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    One thing to check... if its footage taken from a military vehicle such as a war plane or an Apache chopper then its public property under the FOIA and may be footage that can be used for free. Call the military base nearest you for that info.


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    Okay thanks. However, I live in Canada, and the laws may be different on that. Actually when it comes to making this project the producer thought it would be a good idea to use some war footage from old silent movies such as The Birth of a Nation and Battleship Potemkin. But am I allowed to use footage from those movies, or is it owned?


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    Pro Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Mick Scarborough's Avatar
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    do a google search for the public domain status of the film you want to borrow from. For example Birth of a Nation is from 1915 and is in the public domain.


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    Okay thanks. That's what I read on google, but I wasn't sure if I should trust it, since it's google. Can I use footage from the new blu ray release of Birth of a Nation, or is that not public domain?


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    Pro Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Mick Scarborough's Avatar
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    Nothing of that film is copyrighted. Now, if they did something like colorizing it then that may be copyrighted.


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    Yeah it's been re-colorized, and re-scored. I was not planning on using the score for the B-roll in the documentary though, just the picture. I can re-colorize it then. Thank you very much for making it clear.


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    Pro Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Mick Scarborough's Avatar
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    Just some food for thought. The world has gone completely insane with people who are professionally offended. The Birth of a Nation is considered an extremely racist film and as such if you use any of its footage it will offend some overly sensitive person. You WILL get called out on it. It wont matter that you didnt use a racially charged scene. Even the most inane footage, if its recognized, will get you shredded by some activist.+


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    Okay thanks. I don't approve of the movie either. However, part of the project I am doing deals with a theme, of how people are forced to vote. The Birth of a Nation has the scene where the KKK is forcing the black people to vote their way, so I thought that scene would work as B roll, for the theme of being forced to vote. Now it's an extreme example, cause they are being forced at gunpoint, and the motive for forcing them is racial, but I am trying to get footage that is public domain. The theme though is how being forced to vote is wrong, so I am not promoting what the movie depicts, but using it to attack how being forced to vote a certain way is wrong.

    I showed the scene to the producer who got me to direct it, and he said he liked the scene and thought it totally worked for what he is trying to say, but do you think that it's a bad idea, even though it shows the point of being forced to vote a certain way?

    I mean there is probably public domain footage of people voting, but whether or not they are being forced to vote a certain way, you can't really tell in most of that footage. The Birth of a Nation was the only footage I can could think of where you can see the people being forced, unless there is something better to use?

    Last edited by ironpony; 10-08-2017 at 07:48 PM.

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    Senior Member   What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? What are the laws when it comes to using stock footage? Walter B's Avatar
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    Try searching for elections under Saddam's regime.


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    Okay thanks, I'll looking for that!


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