Archive for the 'Legal' Category

Palm Springs Board of Realtors Wants All Photographers to Assign Photo Rights to Brokers

October 8th, 2018

Patrick in Palm Springs recently told me that: Palm Springs has two Boards of Realtors (CDAR and PSRAR) in the Coachella Valley (Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Cathedral City, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Indio, etc.). CDAR has sent an email to their brokers stating they will require all photographers to sign an agreement assigning […]

Zillow Sued for $81 Million by Real Estate Photographer

September 19th, 2018

Lani Rosales over at wrote an interesting article describing the lawsuit that one of our real estate photographer community members (George Gutenberg – Jan 2014 PFRE photographer of the month) has filed against Zillow. For full details, see Lani’s description of the lawsuit. This is not the first such lawsuit. We reported on VHT’s […]

Who Owns the Copyright for Real Estate Images?

August 6th, 2018

Jack in Florida says: I’m starting to get confused about who actually owns copyright privileges to the images that are posted on the MLS. Our local area Real Estate Association seems to think that they do once they are on MLS. They even put their Association logo on the images posted to MLS. Do real […]

Beware of the Licensing Agreements Provided to Realtors by NAR

July 18th, 2018

Teri in Denver recently said: Many Denver area Realtors received an email today stating that they needed to have the copyright to their listing photos. This was sent by the National Association of Realtors and they were also sent a link to a form to send to their photographers so that they, the agents, would […]

Many Agents Still Don’t Understand Photo Licensing

July 11th, 2018

Darren in California asks: About two months ago, I photographed a relatively nice property for one of my top clients. Today, I saw a post on LinkedIn from another real estate agent in a completely separate brokerage posting one of my photos and advertising that he sold the property. I’ve never worked with this agent. […]

Federal Court Rules Copying Photos Found on the Internet Is Fair Use

July 5th, 2018

?An article over at reports on an outrageous Virginia Federal Court decision that finding a photo on the Internet and using it without permission on a commercial website can be considered fair use. In the United States, whether or not the use of copyrighted material without permission can be considered fair use (17 U.S. […]

How Do You Handle Charging for Rebranded Real Estate Video?

June 24th, 2018

Ashley in South Carolina asked: How do you handle rebranding a video? I created a two-minute “amenities” video including a house that is for sale for a Realtor. That Realtor has been fired by the owner and the new Realtor would like to use the video with their branding. I don’t feel like I should […]

The Story of Getting Paid for a Stolen Photo

May 25th, 2018

Why Are Some Agents Asking Real Estate Photographers to Sign a Work for Hire Agreement?

April 2nd, 2018

Eric in LA asks: I got a call from an agent today to shoot a condo next week. We set up a time and everything and just as we were about to hang up he said he had a new agreement form that his office wants photographers to sign and that it says he will […]

Licensing Agreement for Zillow Certified Photographers

March 29th, 2018

James recently asked the following question about the Zillow Certified Photographer agreement: You’ve covered Zillow topics before and I actually got the idea to pursue their “Zillow Certified Photographer” status from PFRE. After shooting the required number of walk-through videos, I’ve been granted that “privilege” of being a Zillow Certified Photographer but the agreement they’re […]

Are You Sure You Understand Your Photo Licensing Agreement?

March 27th, 2018

Alan in Seattle area asked: Last year, I shot a $20 million dollar home. Last evening, an evening magazine show on Seattle’s King 5 (TV), ran a story about that house. They used 14 of my images, which I shot for a realtor when the house was going on the market. Though I was credited […]

When Do You Need Model Releases for Photographing People in a Public Place?

January 7th, 2018

?Michael in Colorado says: I’m getting ready to do some lifestyle shots of my local downtown area and I believe I remember that when you are in a public place and people are in a public place you do not need any model releases for the people you capture in your photographs. However, I’m not […]

Is It Legal to Use Google Earth and Google Maps Imagery on Real Estate Listings?

December 25th, 2017

Leroy in Alberta asked: I started focusing on real estate photography this year and your site has been a very valuable resource! When I Googled this subject, I saw that some people referring to Google Earth Pro users being able to use images commercially, but sifting through the opinions on the online world to get […]

Do You Sign Your Local MLS’s License Agreement?

December 18th, 2017

Travis in Central Washington says: I am a real estate photographer in central Washington and was recently given NWMLS Form 13B to sign (Photographers License Agreement with NWMLS and its members). In looking the document over, the biggest concern I have is in the license section, #2, where the NWMLS states: “Photographer grants NWMLS the […]

How to Find Images That Have Been Stolen from You

November 27th, 2017

Recently, Architectural and Interior Design Photographer George Gutenberg of Palm Desert and Las Vegas had commented on this post.  I think his comment is worth highlighting. The following is an excerpt from his comment: The other day, I did an “infringement search” using my Pixy account. The result is 3,204 infringements!