Copyright Infringement of Photographs of Musicians

Has one of your photographs of a musician been taken and used without your permission? Has it been used by the musician on merchandise, without a license from you? If so, you may have the right to pursue a copyright violation.

Did you know that under U.S. federal copyright laws, when you create an original piece of work like taking a photograph, you are protected? A copyright exists the moment you take a photo. You don’t have to file any paperwork or give notice. The copyright is automatic. It means no one may use that photograph without your permission.

Do you take photographs of musicians? Do you photograph bands for a living? If so, it is essential that you understand your legal rights to your work.

Photographers of Musicians Deserve Payment for Their Work

Whether you are taking photographs of a legendary rock band or an up-and-coming singer-songwriter, being a photographer of musicians is challenging. You must figure out where your subject is performing or recording which for you can mean significant travel. You may have to spend 12 hours waiting to catch a glimpse of the person you are trying to capture on film. You may take thousands of photos at a concert before shooting that perfect image publishers will love.

As a photographer of musicians, your pay is based on the pictures you produce. No one should be allowed to take your creative, unique photos and use them without compensating you for your hard work. Publishers often use copyrighted photos without paying the photographer. When publishers use copyrighted images without paying for them, you might be entitled to file a lawsuit for copyright infringement. If someone is using your photographs of musicians without compensating you, consider getting help from our experienced copyright attorneys.

Photographers May Issue Licenses to Publishers

Who might want to publish your photographs of musicians?

  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Gossip magazines
  • Websites
  • Television producers
  • Streaming video businesses
  • Book authors

If any of these entities wish to use your photographs of musicians, it is up to you, the photographer, to permit them. Permission comes in the form of a license or licensing agreement.

Under the terms of a license agreement, you give the publisher the right to use your photograph or photographs. A license agreement usually addresses essential details surrounding the use of your photos including:

  • Fees – single flat fee, no fee, monthly fee, a price determined by the amount of circulation
  • Length of use – unlimited or a set period.
  • Type of use – in one publication, multiple-media platforms

A licensing agreement can have a wide variety of terms and restrictions. What is important, however, is that the photographer maintains control over who gets to use the images and how.

When Musicians Hire You to Take Photographs You May Retain Copyright Interest

If a musician hires you directly to photograph him/her, your copyright is created the moment you take the photographs. It is up to you and the subject to work out an acceptable arrangement regarding the use of the photos. Once that agreement is in place, your musician subject must abide by the terms of the license.

Remember, when the publisher uses the photographs of musicians without your permission or in violation of your agreement you may have a copyright violation.

Your Photographs of Musicians Are Not for Use by The Public

No one may take your photographs of musicians and use them without your permission. This rule is true for professional publishers or any commercial entity. As the photographer, you have a copyright the minute you take a picture of a musician. You may allow people to use an image or not. You may charge a fee for the use of your photos or not.

Have your photographs been used by a commercial entity without your consent? Have you taken photos at any of these events only to have them published without permission or payment?

  • Musicians at the Grammys
  • Musicians at concerts
  • Musicians on the street
  • Bands at clubs
  • Musicians on the red carpet
  • Musicians on vacations
  • Singers in cafes
  • Musicians in recording studios
  • Musicians in restaurants
  • DJs at dance clubs
  • Musicians at parties
  • Bands in hotels

If a commercial entity has published your photographs of musicians without your permission, you may be able to recover damages for copyright violations.

Don’t Let Publishers Ignore Your Copyright

Don’t let publishers ignore the legal rights of photographers. Taking photographs and publishing them on websites or in magazines without permission means photographers are not receiving compensation for their hard work.

It does not matter if the user of your photos receives no profit from the use of your images. Nor does not matter if only 20 people see its unauthorized use. A copyright violation occurs when your photos are used without your permission or in violation of your license agreement. If a publisher ignores your copyright, which is created the moment you click the camera, you should hold that publisher accountable for violating your rights.

Our Copyright Lawyers Protect Photographers Who Take Pictures of Musicians

Our copyright lawyers take pride in protecting the rights of independent photographers of musicians. We believe that if publishers are violating your rights, you should hold them accountable. They have copyright lawyers defending their actions. You should have advocates on your side ensuring you retain control over your images and get paid for their use. We understand the complex world of copyright law and can help you recover the financial damages the law allows.

Photographers of Musicians: Protect Your Rights by Filing A Copyright Violation Lawsuit

Holding publishers accountable can involve filing a lawsuit for copyright infringement. When your copyright is violated, we can file a suit in federal court. We may also submit a federal copyright registration which opens the door for you to collect “statutory damages.” You may also be able to obtain actual damages which are the estimated financial loss caused by the unauthorized use of your photographs of musicians.

Before we file your claim, we need to ensure that you have a valid copyright registration filed. Our attorneys can help you with this process.

Our copyright attorneys at Liebowitz Law Firm PLLC, recognize the importance of protecting photographers from publishers who want to take advantage of them. We can help you enforce your rights when your photographs of musicians are used without your permission.

Our Copyright Attorneys Protect Photographers Around the Globe

Our copyright attorneys have experience handling cases around the world. We work hard to ensure that the rights of our clients are protected and that they receive the compensation allowed by law. If you are a photographer of musicians and your rights have been violated, call our copyright attorneys today and find out how we can help.

Contact Liebowitz Law Firm, PLLC to Discuss Your Case

If a publisher has used your photographs of musicians without permission, we can help you file a claim for copyright infringement. Under the law, you may be entitled to recover financial damages. Speak with the copyright lawyers at Liebowitz Law Firm, PLLC today. Let’s review your case, and determine how we can help. Call us today at (800) 778-1660. Or, you can submit the contact form on this page.