Photographing or filming people

Copyright in a photo of a person is owned by the photographer - not the subject. However, people still have rights over how their image or photograph is used under other laws such as privacy.

Similarly, copyright in a film is owned by the person responsible for making the film, but people and performers who appear in the film may have performers' rights over their performance. It is University policy that you get written consent from individuals if recordings of their voice or image will be used for University purposes.

It is particularly important that you have written consent if you are photographing or filming children or indigenous people.

Guidelines for using photos and videos as well as the audio/video/photograph release form can be found on the Staff Hub.

If you are using photographs of or filming people for research purposes, you may need to get human ethics approval.

If you are photographing or filming large groups of people, or have people in the background, it is obviously not practical or feasible to get consent from each person. Instead, you can display signs stating that photographs are being taken or filming is happening and asking people to let organisers know if they do not wish to be photographed or filmed.

Copies of the consent forms should be kept on file and managed in accordance with University record management practices.

For more information about privacy issues when photographing or filming people contact the University Privacy Office.

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