I wanted to take this opportunity to guide some of our filmmakers through the somewhat bumpy trail of copyright issues in the Human Highlight Reel contest.
You may or may have not seen this text in our latest Buick/NCAA Human Highlight Reel contest brief. Take a look:
All music, images, video footage and other content must be either originally produced by the Zooppa member submitting the video, or proper permissions must be authorized by the copyright owner. Proper permissions must include the right for the Zooppa member to use the content commercially.
So! This might be discouraging considering that NCAA sports are usually broadcast on television. And you would have to get permission from a major broadcasting network to use any NCAA sports footage.
There are two ways to get around this. The first is to actually get permission from the NCAA and the major broadcasting network that broadcast the sporting event. That task is daunting, to be sure.
The second and easiest way to get around that is to conduct an interview with the athlete you’re doing your documentary on. You can take your own pics and video of her/him his college uniform or use home video of her/him in their college uniform–heck, you don’t even have to have them in their uniform at all. You don’t even have to have them in the video! You can conduct a phone interview and use the audio from that in a voice over!
If you do use video, make sure the footage doesn’t come from TV or another source other than yourself or the athlete’s friends/family. You may ask for footage of her/his high school days old photos. You can also use stats and have them generally reminisce on her/his college athletic career. You have the opportunity to get really creative here.
Now take a look at this:
Do not include any trademarked images or apparel (e.g. – a Nike swoosh on a shirt, a major league baseball team logo, etc.).
The first question that comes to mind would be “What about the college logos/uniform that my athlete was a part of?” Yes, that is totally fine. Just don’t use footage from a NCAA Broadcast of a sporting event. A picture, home video or video that you take yourself of the athlete in her/his uniform would be totally acceptable!
If you read my first blog post then you know what to do regarding the following.
Only use music that you have created yourself (using Garageband, Apple Loops, your own instruments etc.) or music for which you have purchased a commercial license
Finally, take a gander at this paragraph:
Video submitter must sign copyright clearance form and must have any performers sign a release agreement. Both agreements are covered by one document in the materials files. Likewise, it is the responsibility of the filmmaker to ensure that all permissions are in place for use of actors’ (including athletes) likenesses.
Yup! There’s a form in the materials file we provide you! We went ahead and took care of this one for you.
Well, hopefully this helps you aspiring documentary filmmakers that are going to be entering this contest!