Photography / Online use of photos

One of the first predictions made when publications started to go online was "convergence": essentially everything would be an online publication, sometimes with a print edition as well.

It has happened.

The effect for our purposes in the Fees Guide is that the rates paid are determined by the type of publication. Salon is effectively a fairly-glossy magazine, though it has no print edition. The Independent is an online-only newspaper, and pays roughly as badly as it always did.

The Guardian and New Scientist, for example, are first published online and then print versions are put together from that - often, it has to be said, with the picture desk getting a chance to find new and better photos for print, and pay for them.

And so on. It no longer makes sense to deal with "online use" as if it were a separate market for photographs.

Many publishers of print editions expect to use photos online as well for a single fee. It remains worth checking whether your client is prepared to pay an uplift. It is all part of negotiating the rate for that job.

Note that publications that want to use a photo only online often want to pay less than they would for the print edition. The Daily Mail and MailOnline for many purposes, including this at the time of writing, are separate business operations and should pay separately.

It remains the case that, in general, photographers get to keep more rights than reporters and columnists do. You can and should expect to be asked to negotiate a new licence if a magazine produces a "best of" book, for example.

Please see the sections for each type of use linked below.

* Uploaded 0909/0404/20202020: if you have a printout, check the current version at www.londonfreelance.org/feesguide/PhOnlRat.html

Please note that the suggested rates below are minima; that rates for copyright works are for limited licences; and that VAT is not included.
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For full definitions of the categories, click on their names
* See also: reported rates, to compare: Photography / Online use of photos
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Text © Mike Holderness & previous contributors; Moral rights asserted. The collection (database right) © National Union of Journalists. Comments to ffg@londonfreelance.org please. You may find the glossary helpful.

The National Union of Journalists must not, can not and would not wish to dictate rates or terms of engagement to members or to editors. The information presented here is for guidance and as an aid to equitable negotiation only.

Suggestions apply to contracts governed by UK law only. In any event, nothing here should be construed as legal advice.