A mograph artist's rights
  • I work at a TV station and I like to share my work with others , I was wondering what I can and can't share
    - Project files for projects I already finished and are broadcasted 
    - 3D Models for projects that are finished and already broadcasted
    - Project files for projects that were either put on hold or terminated all together
    - My alternate version of a project that was finished and broacdasted
    - My finished project for a project that was terminated or put on hold

    Essentially my argument is that my work is my work , all project files are mine as well as the company . I can do whatever I want with them as long as they don't include any copyrighted material that doesn't belong to me like logos and footage . am I right ?
  • I think it largely depends on both the client and the company. Though, I'm guessing a TV station is a bit different than a studio in that regard. Like some work I did for Farmer's Insurance.. I'm not allowed to put any of that in my portfolio, for some legal reasons that are beyond my control. In fact, MudBrick isn't allow to put any of that work on the company website as we got the job through the local university who hired us to do the work :P. Weird situation, but I definitely do not have any rights there. Would be nice, but oh well.

    Then I've had other situations where I was working on a project but the client requested that I not share any of it (not even partial shots) until the project was published/released. Not so sure about project files though. I've shared some in the past, but not sure if that was even allowed :P

  • It will all depend entirely on any contracts or employment agreements you signed when you were hired. Usually in the US, unless it's explicitly stated otherwise, work like this is considered "work for hire" and is property of the company commissioning the work.

    I would check directly with your company to get it sorted out. I have a feeling they will probably be okay with showing finished work, but not necessarily the pieces used to build it (project files, models, etc). However, if you take what you've learned from those jobs and applied it in a different form to your own projects to share, there shouldn't be much issue. However, you should still check directly with your employer; that is the only way to be sure.
  • My boss is cool but can be very bureaucratic and stubborn at sometimes , if I ask him and he says no It will get ugly . I'm trying to use my judgement here but whenever I get caught I will say This is my work , All models and project files where done long time ago , even before I worked at your station , And essentially this is my argument as well , If I did a scene with some ribbons for the TV can I not do it with my own logo and offer it as a freebie ? Can I not use it as my own ? Since I was the sole creator of an idea I could recreate it a thousand times . Right ? I'm into sweeps atm , can I not recreate the whole project and give it for free ? I can do it from scratch and I could do it even if I didn't work for the TV
  • Again, it all comes down to any agreements or contracts signed. Start with those. Then ask other designers and creatives (not just motion designers) in your region what the standard practice is. That will give you a starting point.
    There's a lot of gray area your touching on, specifically individual assets created before you were employed by the station. However, I still believe anything created while you were being paid by the station is considered their copyrighted work, as you are operating as their agent and creating commissioned works. And I'm sure you could recreate a project using the general principles applied for the station piece, but if that work is theirs, the creative is as well. So you'd need to apply it to a different look and feel.
    But again, I can speak to the situation in the US. I would really dig in and find out what other people's situation is in your area, as laws and standard practice can very greatly.
  • Interesting. 

    My advice is to do what I would do if I was in your position.. ;)

    Simply make a backup of any work that looks anywhere near finished and make sure you're responsible for looking after it. You don't put it on your "public" reel, you save it for your hire-me reel or as individual projects. As long as you credit people correctly (where the work was completed + the client) then I can't see a moral issue with that...as long as you're not advertising your services publicly using that material.

    Legally of course it's likely to be completely out of the question; but how practical is it to operate entirely within the bounds of your contract if you are unable to advertise your services based on past projects?

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