Taylor Swift is always in the media, but recently, the pop songstress has been calling out unpaid streaming services related to Apple’s latest endeavor, Apple Music. Many have applauded her fight against “The Man,” but photographer Jason Sheldon just called her out on her hypocritical behavior, noting her strict photography policies for the photographers at her shows, extending to instances such as:
“The photographs may be used on a one-time only basis for news or information purposes within the body of related text of the publications entitled [x], and shall not be (a) duplicated or reprinted in any other publications, (b) republished in the same Publication or Published in any other edition of such Publication without the Artist’s written consent…”
“Subject to the written consent of the Publication as to any specific future se, FEI shall have the perpetual, worldwide right to use (and to otherwise others to use) any or all of the photographs for any non-commercial purpose (in all media and formats), including but not limited to publicity and promotion.”
Sheldon notes the difficulty in dealing with such limitations, especially for a freelance photographer, saying:
Now… forgive me if I’m wrong, but if you take points 2 and 3 in that contract (which is provided to Photographers who need to agree to those terms before they are allowed to do their job in photographing you for editorial outlets), it appears to be a complete rights grab, and demands that you are granted free and unlimited use of our work, worldwide, in perpetuity. You say in your letter to Apple that “Three months is a long time to go unpaid”. But you seem happy to restrict us to being paid once, and never being able to earn from our work ever again, while granting you the rights to exploit our work for your benefit for all eternity….
How are you any different to Apple? If you don’t like being exploited, that’s great.. make a huge statement about it, and you’ll have my support. But how about making sure you’re not guilty of the very same tactic before you have a pop at someone else?
Photographers need to earn a living as well. Like Apple, you can afford to pay for photographs so please stop forcing us to hand them over to you while you prevent us from publishing them more than once, ever.