NickF

Construction site video

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What are my rights as a contractor with regard to flying one of my construction sites to take progress video and photographs for our website and/or Facebook page. Can the Owner of the development prohibit this? What are guidelines that allow or prohibit this?

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That probably depends on whether you are the prime contractor or a sub.  Yes the owner of the development can prohibit you from publishing likenesses of their property on social media or in advertisements.  

This is probably less about your rights and more about do you ever want to work for that company again.  Depending on how influential that company is, you might make finding more work very difficult. 

 

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Hi Nick,

Talking to the owner before flying and explaining what you are doing, and the flight plan you will follow to keep people safe on the job site may help gain the owner's trust and approval. Perhaps the owner would be interested in using your photographs as well.  Also, having your Part 107 and basic drone liability insurance would be helpful as well. If that doesn't work, I agree with Av8Chuck, you will need to weigh whether it's worth the risk to jeopardize the relationship.

David

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I confess I have be hired to perform monthly aerial photo shoots for progress on two separate construction projects...One by the construction company and the other by the Realtor.  The question of whether or not the owner would object has never come up.  I suppose it could, though I find it unlikely/

I think David's suggestion of talking to an owner first is a good one.

...Jay
NorthShoreDroneService.com

 

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Anyone who has followed my replies knows I rarely suggest asking for permission first, but in this case it’s not to ask permission to fly, presumably you already have that, but it’s an intalectual property issue.  

You do not have the right to publish images of someone’s property unless they’ve explicitly given it to you.  The issue will rarely come up on the jobsite, it’s comes up when the owner of the propert sees it in an advertising or online.  

Most of the contracts we have state that we are not allow to post data we collect online or use it for promotional purposes without written permission.  I have seen this happen a lot when commercial drone operators post images on their website promoting their work.  

This Is a contentious issue that really has little to do with the drone and it applies to JSU about everyone on a jobsite. This is one of those things that says a lot about your integrity.  If you have permission it’s an indication you have integrity, if you don’t and someone sees the imagery of their property you might never know that’s why you lost out on future work.   

It’s not worth the risk.  Obviously common sense should prevail, it also depends on what your shooting/using.  But there are lots of things that happen on construction sites where the prime or sub contractors don’t want someone looking over their shoulders.  

 

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What about clients I am currently flying for. What would the protocol be for publishing media to my web page or FB page? Do I just need to Share the video footage or photos on my page after they have published to theirs? The few clients I have thus far have been tagging me (for credit) in the media they publish. Some have been adding visual effects and music to media. Are there any written or unwritten guidelines for that? I have no issue with it at this point, but would not want someone in the future to modify my work in a way that could hurt my fledgling business.

All just questions to educate myself. Thanks.

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Ok, for all the concerns you mentioned about what your customers might do with your footage is the reason that you can’t use imagery of their projects for promoting your business without permission. 

Here’s an interesting tidbit, as the photographer, unless specified in the contract, you own all the footage.  It does not belong to them because they hired you.  However, as we’ve been discussing, just because you own it doesn’t give you the right to use it.  

The best way to manage everyone’s expectations is to agree upon what can be be used for promotional purposes in the employment contract.  Keep in mind that the client who hired you, like a real estate agent, probably doesn’t have the authority to give you permission in the first place.  For the clients your already working for, just talk to them.  

However you go about solving this problem, GET IT IN WRITING.   The real problem your solving is one of expectations.  If you make an honest effort of trying to get permission to use any material for promotional purposes and get it in writing, then even if the wrong person signed your request you had the integrity to ask.  Most of the time the offended IP owner will simply ask you to stop using it.  But if you don’t make the effort and get it in writing then not only will they make you stop but it can cost you money.  

This is one of those topics where it sounds more complicated than it is.  Use common sense.  If your documenting the construction of the Disney Concert hall in downtown LA, your probably not going to get permission and you know you’ll get in trouble if you use any of it for promotional purposes. If your documenting the construction of an office building in rural America, people are less likely to care.  

 Also, if your working on a project that is federally funded or DoD related then it is expressly prohibited.  In those cases you must get permission. Depending on what it is, generally you will get permission if you ask but they need to approve hows it’s being used.  

In case you haven’t figured this out, this is a “quarantine” answer.  I’m bored out of my mind.  Answering this question is the most excitement I’ve had in days 🤬

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Everyone thought that Mathew Roberts would surely be sued out of existence for his videos on the Apple park development, apparently without permission.  In this case, that did not happen.  So, you never know.

 

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4 hours ago, Dave Pitman said:

Everyone thought that Mathew Roberts

Did Mathew work on that project or did he just fly around from outside?    

If he worked as a contractor and didn’t get sued for some reason he’ll probably never work on another Apple project. 

But your right, you never know.

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