National Parks and Reserves

Discussion in 'Business of Photography' started by jake_bryant, Nov 27, 2010.

  1. Here's the deal...
    You go into a national reserve to photograph landscape, reportage and wildlife. You state in writing what your intentions are by filling out a park questionnaire and receive permission to enter the reserve accordingly.
    You work for two months in the reserve and capture beautiful images. On the day you leave, the park administration say you should have signed a Property Release ( Chart) but they forgot to ask you to do so when you arrived.
    What rights do you have if you want to sell the images? And what rights do the park have to restric you from doing so?
     
  2. Where are you--what country? I am not sure what a property release is in this case. I have, on private property, signed a statement that I can't use the images for other than the purpose I was there--a magazine shoot. I have been presented an agreement where I essentially signed over my images copyright--not signed. So, not sure what the content of this agreement you were given would be. In the US, I am aware of the fact that you cannot shoot commercial work in National Parks--and most government property actually--without a permit, however, you aren't restricted from selling work you do there as stock imagery. I have never heard of having to sign any agreements of any sort if you aren't doing commercial photography, so I guess we need a bit more information.
    Also, you aren't required to sign anything after the fact, to my knowledge, and many times such a condition will be considered non-binding (attorney may be needed in such a case) because it is after the effort has been put into something and can be seen as coerced if it conflicts with your own intentions.
     
  3. The park may claim that you are responsible for knowing the rules and regulations.
     
  4. It was in France, (can't say where at the moment), but I take the point about signing something after the fact, which is what I told the Park. The thing is I was required to sign an entry form which was reviewed by the Park. I clearly stated my intentions and profession so therefore if they really needed a property release signed they should have asked me then. Further, as my visit was not a commercial assignment I felt no need to investigate special permissions.
    Peter, your point may well be correct, but the rules and regulations of the Park should I think have been presented to me beforehand....in English. As they were not, I had no knowledge of their rules other than those given to me on arrival. I simply signed the necessary documentation required. The problems started when they said if I gave them some images they could overlook the issue, I declined of course.
     
  5. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    Peter, your point may well be correct, but the rules and regulations of the Park should I think have been presented to me beforehand....in English.​
    Do you think that in the US, any photographer should be given information in their native language?
     
  6. Yes, if its a legal document, why not?......especially as we're part of the EU.
     
  7. The U.S. is not "part of the EU".
     
  8. The park may claim that you are responsible for knowing the rules and regulations.​
    All terms and conditions of a contract must be known before the contract is entered into, not after the fact. However, this sounds more like an agreement than a contract as you are not paying a fee to use the park (I assume).
    but the rules and regulations of the Park should I think have been presented to me beforehand....in English.​
    In France?
    The U.S. is not "part of the EU".​
    Not yet!
     
  9. John, I'm in the UK and I was talking only of the EU, this has nothing to do with the USA.
     
  10. Steve,........' In France'? Excellent question....:) Yes indeed this I think is a French issue as there are other colleagues who were not asked to sign anything..... but they were French! They didn't have any problems....I wonder why?
     
  11. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    Well my question was about the US, and you responded affirmatively and John questioned that. Seems simple enough.
    So let's talk about the EU. Do you think that every country in the EU should provide everything in every language? Should the UK provide all government forms in Finnish? In Latvian? In Estonian?
     
  12. The only issue with this legal thing is that you can't be expected to sign anything you can't read and be held accountable--I wouldn't sign anything I couldn't read. The issue is actually that rarely, in law, is a contract or agreement effective if it couldn't be understood by the signing party.
     
  13. Yes Jeff I see your question was about the US, I missed that.
    Most business in the EU, is negotiated in English and has been since the end of the 2'nd world war. In politics of course, immediate dialogue is translated as are legal documents. Would you sign a legal document in a language you don't understand?.... Clearly not, so therefore it is assumed that a standardised document/contract is written in the international business language, English, not Estonian. While this may not be a rule, it is most common, as the most understood language in the EU is English. Saying that though, you'd be surprised how many UK government forms are provided in EU languages, and middle-eastern. Its become common practice because we're so accommodating.
     
  14. The issue here soesn't seem to be whether Jake was given the regulations in Enlgish or French. It seems to be there was no attempt to give him the regulation at all due to the Park's oversight.
    Whether you can sell images comes down to what that agreement says. Now In English law I think I am correct in saying that you had been open up front so would be permitted to sell the images irrespective of what the unsigned form says. But then the French have always considered themselves able to make it all up as they go along - so my response would be to sell images and wait until they contact you.
     
  15. The French are a bit different...they have this massive attitude about anglicising their language or letting English take over. They are living in the 1930's when French was the language of diplomacy. Now its English... so get over it! But, you have to respect them for wanting to preserve their unique culture. I think I would rather have Paris as it is than with no French to learn.
    As for the agreement. I think your first mistake was to ask permission in the first place. I can also see it from their point of view. They own the asset that your are making money from. I suppose they are entitled to a bit from that.
    IN NSW here, the State Government tried to do the same thing. It went to court and the ruling went against them, as by definition any Crown Land is the property of the people, only administered by the government. And as a photographer, a member of the people, it was his asset to photograph. (I just love a Parliamentary democracy where we can call the government on stuff like this).
     
  16. The issue here soesn't seem to be whether Jake was given the regulations in Enlgish or French. It seems to be there was no attempt to give him the regulation at all due to the Park's oversight... ...Whether you can sell images comes down to what that agreement says.​
    Actually the issue is whether there is government regulation covering the issue and, if so, does the fact that a government official not advising a photographer of an existing regulation excuse a photographer from conforming with them.
     
  17. Well said all......this is great! The issue opens up a can or worms doesn't it! Perhaps it could be looked at like this:
    The original documentation i signed requesting my profession and reason for entering the Park/reserve was indeed in English. There was not mention of any property release agreement, so therefore once they had read the entry questionnaire it was up to them to say "You need to sign a release agreement" etc. As they did not do this, it was their mistake and they should be held accountable if they wish to peruse it further.
    Moving the goal posts is not fair.....
     
  18. they should be held accountable if they wish to peruse it further.
    Moving the goal posts is not fair.....​
    If a government regulation applies and it is not excused, which is likely if there is such a regulation, then the "goal posts" were never moved. You just didn't know they were there. Check with the actual governmental regulations as to the situation as your next step.
     
  19. Why are you signing a release for shooting their "stuff?" In the US, a "release" is a permission from the subject to allow the photographer or some other user using the images. Without knowing what the contents of the document are, it's hard to even consider whether there is a problem here or not.
     
  20. Most business in the EU, is negotiated in English and has been since the end of the 2'nd world war.​
    Until the UK joined the Common Market in 1975, French was the standard business/political language in Europe. When the UK joined, English became the dominant language.
     
  21. Why are we speculating here on P.net, shouldn't the OP be talking to a French attorney. French legal system is very different than England, Germany, the U.S. etc.
     
  22. shouldn't the OP be talking to a French attorney​
    One who speaks English?
    This is common advice on these threads (usually given by Americans) but the cost of getting professional legal advice will in most cases be greater than any profit to be made from the pictures involved.
     
  23. I will talk with the OP about this issue, but really its just a matter of who said what at the time. I'm not being sued so there's no urgency. However, it is worth while knowing the best way to deal with these things when they arise.
    "nul n'est censé ignorer la loi" ......... Yeah right, in France? That's open to interpretation I suppose.
     
  24. NO, I'm just saying in Europe, not the United States. I like American
     
  25. <<I will talk with the OP about this issue>>

    Dude, you ARE the OP (original poster).

    What did they say that you couldn't do with the photos?
     

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