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Getty Wants...

January 7, 2014

One of the pitfalls of photographing strangers and posting the results online is the number of times Getty, one of the worlds largest picture libraries, requests the shots. Now if it is family or clients that I have talked about model release too, then there is no problem. But when I stop and photograph a stranger in the street I hardly ever ask them to sign a model release, it's sometimes hard enough to convince them to stop for a photograph, imagine how awkward it would be to then ask them to sign a release so that their photo "could" be used anywhere in the world and they wouldn't really get anything for it apart from the kudos of possibly seeing themself in print. The reason I write this is I've just received another email asking me to release 18 more shots to Getty, 17 of which would require a model release. Of the shots requested 9 will not be submitted to them because of a lack of release.

Am I annoyed about this? No, not at all, the shots were never taken with a view to display them anywhere other than in the 100 strangers group on Flickr and on my website, so I chuckle to myself and submit those shots that I have a release for, but I must admit that I do keep my eyes open for those strangers as I walk around the streets with the hope that I can see them again just to let them know that they were sought after by Getty, surely that would flatter most peoples ego and there is nothing wrong with that.
Ryan, most probably would never need his ego flattered as he told me he was Butler of the Year when I took this shot in Beconsfield motorway services, but I would love to let him know anyway...

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