Skips to main content

Name and Likeness Use Guidelines

REVIEW THE RULES BEFORE YOU USE

Navigating trademarked and copyrighted materials can be tricky. That’s why we’ve created our Intellectual Property Policy, to help you cover your media use bases.

Please use the following guidelines as you implement the Ensign College Name and Likeness Use Policy.

  • Toggle Item
    General Guidelines
    Due to the many legal nuances in privacy and publicity laws, it is usually advisable to obtain a written release from any individual that would be recognized in a photograph, recording, or publication.


    Consent is not needed to use an individual’s image or likeness that is not recognizable or identifiable. Images will rarely be recognizable or identifiable that:


    1. have been digitally altered to mask the individual’s identity.
    2. are images of individuals who are part of a wide shot of a street scene.
    3. are images of individuals viewed from behind where only a hairstyle or hand is visible.

    Note: Extra caution should be addressed when using image of individuals on the covers of magazines, brochures, pamphlets, or media holders (e.g., DVD cover art); when depicting sensitive subjects; or, when images are used in a promotional manner that suggests an individual endorses or supports Ensign College or its activities.


    • A written release is required before using an individual’s name in any materials of a promotional nature.

    • A Talent Release should be obtained from all persons who have performance roles or other scripted parts.

    A reasonable effort should be made to inform participants at public college events when the event is being broadcast live and/or recorded or photographed for possible future college use. This should be done in a way that does not unduly intrude into the event. For example, notice may be printed on the back of admission tickets or signs may be placed at the entrances to the venue. It is generally advisable to take photos of the posted notices and retain them in the files as proof of notice.


    Caption photographs correctly and be careful when cropping a photograph that the context in which the photograph was taken is not altered.


    All releases need to be signed and dated. Each release should name the project for which the release was obtained.
  • Toggle Item
    Photographs of Individuals
    The right of privacy protects an individual from the disclosure of any personal information that would be offensive to a reasonable person and which is not of legitimate concern to the public. The right of publicity, on the other hand, protects an individual’s right to control the commercial use of his or her name, likeness, or identity. As a general rule, the right of privacy applies to living persons while the right of publicity may also apply to deceased persons. Privacy and publicity laws vary from state to state. In addition, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) gives students the right to control the distribution of personally identifiable information from educational records.
  • Toggle Item
    Photographs of Property
    Property does not enjoy a right of privacy or publicity. There are, however, other bodies of law that may prohibit or restrict the unauthorized use of a photograph containing property. These include contract, trademark, unfair competition, copyright, and trespass law. Depending on the circumstances, it may be necessary or advisable to obtain permission from the owner of the property.
  • Toggle Item
    Permission Charts
    SubjectDescriptionRelease Needed?
    RecognizableAny person who is recognizable in any way, including recognizable by shape or silhouette.


    Note: If the recognizable individual is a minor, you will need parental or guardian consent.
    Yes, except as listed below
    Crowd or street sceneAny person who is recognizable. However, releases are generally not required from people who are recognizable or identifiable in a photograph of a steet or public place provided that the photograph is reasonably related to the subject matter and the identifiable people are not the focus of the photograph. An example of a permitted use would be a photograph of the Marriott Center that is used to illustrate an article about the Marriott Center or about the historyof BYU basketball, even though some individuals in the background may be identifiable.Yes/No
    News reporting or documentary image of a public event.


    Note: These images must be of an actual real-life event, not a re-creation or a re-enactment.
    Audience members, observers, and bystanders at a public college event such as a musical or dramatic performance, sporting event, public lecture, religious gathering, building dedication, fireside, or press conference.No
    Non-featured, voluntary participates (e.g. individuals who conduct meeting, introduce speaker, offer a prayer, present an award, participate in a choir).No
    Featured participants, speakers, presenters, soloists, guest artists, and established musical groups.Yes
    Celebrities or public figuresThe image or likeness of a public figure or famous person should always be treated as "recognizable"—even if only a portion of them is visible.Yes
    Public or civil servants, uniforms, and equipmentPolice, fire, medicalYes
    Gallaries, museums, theme parks, and places open to the publicDepends on the photography policy of the property concerned. Some places open to the public have admission conditions and/or photograph policies in place which place restricitons on taking photographs while on the properties. Such restrictions are often imposed via contract terms.Yes/No
    Works of artPrivately-owned art that is publicly displayed, including sculptures, paintings, drawings, installations, or other artwork protected by copyright.Yes
    Art classified as being in the public domain.No
    Public propertyGovernment buildings, public schools, parks, historic landmarks, and other properties classified as being in the public domain.No
    Private property–identifiableHomes, office buildings, interiors of private buildings and surrounding property. Some building designs are protected by trademark (e.g., the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame). Check with property ownerYes
    Private property–unidentifiableLocations or property with no identifiable features.No
    Identifiable private property from public accessible location (e.g., a street or motorway)Building(s) in an image whose central focus is not the actual building(s) such as photographs of landscapes or skylines. It is generally permissible to publish without permission such photographs if they were taken while the photographer was on public property or on property open to the public.No
    Corporate logos and trademarksImages which include identifiable logos, trademarks, and insignias. Note: permission may not be necessary if such logos, trademarks, and insignias are not the focus of the image and are incidental to the background surroundings.Yes
    Professional sports and team logos (identifiable)A player’s face and/or number, team jersey, logo, or helmet icon.Yes
    Recognized products and product designsRecognizable products and product designs. For example, beverage drinks, computers, MP3 players, children’s toys and figurines. Some manufacturers are very sensitive with respect to unauthorized uses of photographs containing their products (e.g., Harley-Davidson motorcycle, Disney Corporation, Campbell Soup).Yes
Have a question? Our Virtual Assistant may be able to help.