Products, Locations May Require Releases

Posted on 9/22/2009 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

iStockphoto has produced an online tool that can be very useful, not just to iStock photographers and customers, but to every photographer, photo seller or buyer.

The company has done extensive research in an effort to identify locations and properties around the world where a signed release is required, if the image is to be used for commercial purposes.

A lot of that information has been contributed by the iStock community, and iStock acknowledges that it is not comprehensive. Nevertheless, it is a good place to start.

Anyone who has questions about whether a release is required for a particular product or location can go to iStock's technical wiki, enter the name of the product or location, and quickly determine if it requires a release.

Because iStockphoto licenses all its images as Royalty-Free and has no control over how an image is used, they refuse to accept any image on this list unless it is accompanied by an appropriate release. The iStock inspectors may also reject images of certain other subjects, not yet included on the list, if the inspector believes requires a release.

Photographs of some of the subjects listed in the technical wiki may be used for certain editorial purposes without a release. Rights-managed sellers who place restrictions on image use and require information about how an image will be used before establishing a price, might choose to retain some of the images on this list in order to make them available to authorized customers.

Copyright © 2009 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


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