The Catholic University of America

Photography/Videography Policy

Approved by: President
History: Issued    --  March 9, 2007
  Revised  -- June 23, 2017
   
Related Policies: Speaking to the News Media Policy; Creative Services Policy; Recording Classroom Lectures Policy
Additional References:  
Responsible Official: Associate Vice President for Marketing and Communications, tel. (202) 319-5600

I.          Policy Statement 

This policy sets forth the scope of photography and videography services available to the University by the Office of Marketing and Communications, and the instances when photographers and videographers working on behalf of the University can take photographs and videos in public with implied consent.  

This policy also sets forth requirements for photography/videography by non-University personnel and by members of the University community for private, non-profit, commercial or newsgathering purposes.

II.         Definitions 

A.         Commercial Photography/Videography: photography or filming intended for financial gain. 

B.         Media: broadcast news crews, documentary film crews, photojournalists, authors. 

C.         Non-profit photography/videography: photography that will benefit a non-commercial cause. 

D.         Photography: The action of taking photos/pictures, using digital or traditional means. 

E.         University Community: members of the University community may include but are not limited to: administrators; alumni; University student journalists; donors; faculty; guest lecturers; paid contractors; staff; students and their families; and trustees. 

F.         Videography: the action of capturing video. 

III.        Staff Photography and Videography Services 

The University's policy is to restrict the use of staff photography and videography to the representation, marketing or promotion of University-related activities only. The University photographer and videographer are available to photograph and videotape official University events and individuals for University publications, marketing initiatives and publicity. This service is at no cost to the client requesting staff photography and videography services. The client must pay for print processing, delivery and mailing, and freelance photographer charges (if applicable). The Office of Marketing and Communications reserves the right to review all requests for photography and videography services to ensure that the client has a specific institutional need for photographs/videos and that the photographer's/videographer’s time is used in a way that best serves the University's needs.

If the University photographer/videographer is unavailable for a client, the photographer/videographer can recommend a freelance photographer/videographer. The client is responsible for contacting the freelance photographer/videographer and paying for their services.
 

IV.        Permission to Photograph on Campus 

The University is located on private property; thus, any photographers or videographers who are NOT members of the University community may obtain photos/video on University property ONLY with permission of a) the subject(s) of their photography/videography; b) the cognizant building/office/department/school administrator; and/or b) the Office of Marketing and Communications. 

Amateur photography/videography by members of the University community and guests/visitors at University events is generally allowed, provided that the photographer/videographer has permission of photo/video subjects or is photographing/videotaping general crowd shots of an event considered open to the public. Any photography/videography that is disruptive, intrusive or out of compliance with University policies should be reported to the Department of Public Safety at tel. (202) 319-5111. 

The campus Coordinator for Scheduling & Event Planning must be notified any time photography/videography will take place in building interiors where classroom or other meeting space must be reserved and paid for through the campus reservation system. 

Media photography/videography must be cleared by the Office of Marketing and Communications; the Department of Public Safety must be notified in the event news media will be on campus. 

To determine the appropriate official for granting permission to photograph/videotape, contact the Office of Marketing and Communications at (202) 319-5600. 

V.         Consent to Photograph/Video Individuals and Groups 

A.     Implied Consent 

It is not necessary to obtain a photography/videography release for any individual or group photographed/videotaped in a venue or at an event considered open to the public. This includes all public spaces across campus from exterior walkways, to entry-ways, atriums, sports fields and classrooms. Persons can be photographed from a distance without their consent except when they have secluded themselves in places where they have a reasonable expectation of privacy (for example, in dressing rooms, restrooms, medical facilities, homes, and residence hall rooms). 

B.     Consent Required 

1.      For University students

Use of photos of individual students or a group of students in a small setting, where clearly identifiable, requires a written release. However, provided that a student has not requested that the University maintain the confidentiality of the student's directory information, the University is not prohibited by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) from using and publishing photographs of the student solely for University purposes. 

2.      For adult campus visitors 

Upon arrival to the University’s campus, adult visitors give their implied consent to the University to use any photo(s)/video(s) in any lawful purpose as detailed above. Photograph(s) and video footage may be obtained in both informal and formal settings. 

It is not necessary to obtain a photography release for any individual or group photographed in a venue or at an event considered open to the public. This includes all public spaces across campus from exterior walkways, to entry-ways, atriums, sports fields and classrooms. Persons can be photographed from a distance without their consent except when they have secluded themselves in places where they have a reasonable expectation of privacy (for example, in dressing rooms, restrooms, medical facilities, homes, and residence hall rooms). 

 

3.      For Visitors who are Minors 

Images of a minor(s) require a written release from the minor’s parents/legal guardians, particularly if the photo is only of one or a few children, as compared to a very large crowd.

All questions or concerns relating to the University’s photo/video release policy should be directed to the University’s Office of the General Counsel (tel. 202-319-5142).