Understanding how licensing works.
LICENSING ARCHIVE FOOTAGE : A PRACTICAL GUIDE
Using existing footage in an audiovisual production, whether historic archives or contemporary stock footage, is an important part of filmmaking. Getting the footage you need doesn’t have to be complicated, however it helps if you follow a few simple steps.
If you source copyrighted property (or excerpt thereof) and wish to incorporate it into your production, you need to clear the use with the copyright owner. Unauthorised use of protected content would result in copyright infringement.
As a platform, DARS represents a number of footage owners and through DARS, they generally sell their material in two ways; “Royalty Free (RF)” or “Rights Managed (RM)”. Broadly speaking, RF means that you are free to use the material how you like, for as long as you like, and RM means that you can use the material in a specific Project under specific terms. More on that subject can be found in our FAQ.
Licensing & Copyright clearances are a crucial pre-production step and we advise our Licencees to start thinking about those processes early into the production process to avoid unnecessary and costly problems. Knowing your commercial and distribution goals in advance is vital as it will affect the scope of the rights you will need us to grant you.
The parameters that are important for us to know when granting a licence are the following:
- your project type (what is the intended use)
- where your project will be distributed (what media)
- the term (for how long) & the geographical territory
- the type of material you wish to license: RF or RM
A licence is an agreement between you (the footage user) and us (the representative of a footage owner) detailing the rights to use the archival footage in a project. Then, depending on the content you license from DARS, you may have to secure other rights associated with the footage you are licensing such as music, stills, performances, recordings, talent, trademark or third party clips.
If you wish to find out more about rights and licensing, please read our FAQ below before contacting our support team. Please note that we only provide recommendations and not legal advice.
FAQ TO RIGHTS AND LICENCES
Below you will find a list of frequently asked questions around the licensing of video clips on DARS as well as our terms. Please feel free to contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any further questions.
WHAT DOES LICENSING MEAN?
Licensing means that you are not purchasing a video clip, but you are licensing the right to use it in your project in the way described in the Licence Terms of the End User Licence Agreement (EULA). Licences on offer can either be royalty-free (RF) or rights-managed (RM). As a platform, we represent a number of footage partners.
Our footage partners retain all relevant ownership rights to the Content including, but not limited to, the IP Rights. Restrictions may apply for licencing. We endeavour to publish next to the video clip metadata related to restrictions or special terms.
WHAT DO ROYALTY FREE (RF) and RIGHTS MANAGED (RM) MEAN ?
Royalty-free (RF) does not mean free of charge. Royalty-free video clips may be used in different projects and mediums, for an unlimited duration worldwide. An RF licence is therefore easy and convenient. The content is non-exclusive, meaning that DARS can license the same content to other customers. If releases are required, the release status will be indicated on our platform. This status defines how the video clip may be used, based on permissions granted by the Talent (people), the Trademarks or the Location (property) shown in it. You may find clips on our platform marked for «All Uses – No Release Required », this means that they can be used for commercial purposes (all projects and media) and do not require releases.You may find clips marked for « Editorial Use Only », this generally means that no releases should be required but they cannot be used for commercial advertising use.
Rights-managed (RM) video clips may be licensed for a specific project. A rights-managed licence provides time and geographically limited, specific and per-use rights to use a video clip. The final cost of the clip will be determined by usage terms, the medium on which the clip will be displayed, the duration of use and the geographical location. The content is non-exclusive, meaning that DARS can license the same content to other customers.
WHEN DO I NEED TO SECURE THIRD PARTY RIGHTS CLEARANCE?
We have attempted to flag on our site the current copyright status of the content and known copyright information. It is worth noting that while the physical footage may be available from one single source, the copyright of the footage itself may be represented by more than one party.
For example : a news report including library footage from another news provider
Various elements represented in the clip may also require separate clearance.
For example : anything appearing in the video, in which a third party may claim rights including but not limited to a photograph, an illustration, a performance, music, a trademark, an artwork…
It remains the responsibility of the buyer to obtain independent legal advice with regard to all other aspects of our proposed EULA and clear relevant elements with third party rights owners.
WHAT IS EDITORIAL VS. COMMERCIAL USE?
When you search DARS’s library, you will find content that can be used for editorial or commercial purposes.
Commercial Use: the video clip can be used for commercial purposes (all projects and media = all uses). Examples of commercial use include such things as feature films, entertainment projects, advertisement and corporate projects for public presentations.
Editorial Use: the video clip has to be used for editorial purposes and cannot be cleared for commercial advertising use. It generally means any kind of venture that promotes a brand, a product or a service. The purpose has to solely be to inform, education or entertain and not to promote a product or service. Classic examples are news reporting, education, documentaries.
WHAT DOES RESTRICTION MEAN?
You may use licensed content in any way consistent with the rights granted in your End User Licence Agreement (EULA) and not restricted.
Classic examples of restriction of uses are : not damaging the reputation of the Content Owner, not using the Content in merchandise, advertisement, endorsement, promotion, advertorial or other commercial Production without our prior written consent.
WHAT ARE YOUR LICENSING TERMS ?
See our End User Licence Agreement (EULA) for Royalty-free (RF) or for Rights Managed (RF) content.