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Jan 30, 2019 05:57:42   #
LU10IT
 
I'm a wedding photography in Daytona Beach Florida, My wife and I have been in business for over 10 years, how long is the general rule, legal or moral, should we hold onto the files.

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Jan 30, 2019 06:40:48   #
traderjohn (a regular here)
 
About as long as some weddings do. I guess. Why would there be a moral problem?

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Jan 30, 2019 06:46:16   #
Stephan G (a regular here)
 
LU10IT wrote:
I'm a wedding photography in Daytona Beach Florida, My wife and I have been in business for over 10 years, how long is the general rule, legal or moral, should we hold onto the files.


It could be indefinite. If you don't have a statement of period of storage in your contracts, you do leave yourself open as to the responsibility of length of time. Thus it would be a good business idea to state clearly on the contracts and even when providing the shots to the customers. I can't address as to the cycle because I am not in the business. I think you will get several suggestions. But it is also a good way of generating reorders down the road by letting your clientele know as to when you are about to delete the shots.

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Jan 30, 2019 07:10:17   #
DebAnn
 
You should put a time length in your contracts. If you don't have one, I would give the files to the clients rather than discarding them.
LU10IT wrote:
I'm a wedding photography in Daytona Beach Florida, My wife and I have been in business for over 10 years, how long is the general rule, legal or moral, should we hold onto the files.

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Jan 30, 2019 07:18:54   #
bobburk3
 
DebAnn wrote:
You should put a time length in your contracts. If you don't have one, I would give the files to the clients rather than discarding them.
... That's a great solution and a great idea. I'm sure your clients would appreciate this unexpected gift. It might even generate some referrals.

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Jan 30, 2019 08:49:29   #
abc1234
 
LU10IT wrote:
I'm a wedding photography in Daytona Beach Florida, My wife and I have been in business for over 10 years, how long is the general rule, legal or moral, should we hold onto the files.


Save them until you learn how to write. And them keep them forever. Storage is cheap; memories are not.

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Jan 30, 2019 08:58:23   #
CHG_CANON (a regular here)
 
Moral? Your contract language should state the storage terms and limits.

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Jan 30, 2019 10:23:35   #
mwsilvers (a regular here)
 
LU10IT wrote:
I'm a wedding photography in Daytona Beach Florida, My wife and I have been in business for over 10 years, how long is the general rule, legal or moral, should we hold onto the files.

You should be asking an attorney that question. I wouldn't hang my hat on any legal advice you get here.

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Jan 30, 2019 10:37:01   #
abc1234
 
mwsilvers wrote:
You should be asking an attorney that question. I wouldn't hang my hat on any legal advice you get here.


Properly speaking, an intellectual property attorney. If you ask more than one, you will probably get even more conflicting answers. As someone stated above, state clearly your file retention policy and a proper formal and signed contract. How long you will retain the files, that they belong to you and that you are not responsible for their accidental loss. As a practical matter and as I stated above, keep them for as long as you are in business. Storage is cheap, memories are not. This is the era of digital files, not negatives and prints.

I owned a sign company for 25 years. Our original technology changed but we could still retrieve files for over 15 years except for those that simply got lost over time. Customers appreciated our using files they had not used in over ten years.

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Jan 30, 2019 10:37:41   #
bobburk3
 
"Save them until you learn how to write." What does that mean?

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Jan 30, 2019 10:41:09   #
abc1234
 
bobburk3 wrote:
"Save them until you learn how to write." What does that mean?


That was a dig about that terribly written post. Do you see all the grammatical errors in it? If he has not learned how to write by this age, he is not likely to do so ever. As I stated here, keep the files forever or as long as you are in business.

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Jan 30, 2019 10:54:33   #
Bill_de (a regular here)
 
abc1234 wrote:
That was a dig about that terribly written post. Do you see all the grammatical errors in it? If he has not learned how to write by this age, he is not likely to do so ever. As I stated here, keep the files forever or as long as you are in business.


That's why he is a photographer and not a writer.

When Moose Peterson started his Newsletter years ago people constantly responded by complaining about spelling and grammatical errors. His response was basically if you don't like it, go elsewhere. Years later he is still a Nikon Ambassador, so I guess his photography is appreciated.

If someone here feels compelled to criticize something that is not photography related, a private message might be more appropriate.

---

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Jan 30, 2019 11:00:40   #
bobburk3
 
Bill_de wrote:
That's why he is a photographer and not a writer.

When Moose Peterson started his Newsletter years ago people constantly responded by complaining about spelling and grammatical errors. His response was basically if you don't like it, go elsewhere. Years later he is still a Nikon Ambassador, so I guess his photography is appreciated.

If someone here feels compelled to criticize something that is not photography related, a private message might be more appropriate.

---
Well said Bill. If you check out his previous posts, and even the one above, his grammar certainly is not perfect. I thought this was a photography forum, not an English class

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Jan 30, 2019 13:01:12   #
SteveR (a regular here)
 
If you have indicated that the files are your property and do not supply the wedding party with a copy, my feeling is that they should be held indefinitely, and even be made available after your death. We never did get a full sized wedding album when we were married. Forty years after the fact I was able to track down the photographer's negatives in the local university library which made digital copies for me for a charge. You never know when individuals will want copies years later. Even now I have a professionally done photo of my parents taken 40 years ago that has become marred in the box in which it has been kept. I would love to find out where that photographer's negatives are kept and have a new photo made. Keep the files.

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Jan 30, 2019 14:21:21   #
mwsilvers (a regular here)
 
bobburk3 wrote:
Well said Bill. If you check out his previous posts, and even the one above, his grammar certainly is not perfect. I thought this was a photography forum, not an English class


Agree. There are a number of reasons why some posts use poorly constructed language. Often it is because English is a second language for the writer. Sometimes it's because the writer wants to quickly express his ideas and doesn't want to spend the time editing or correcting typos, and sometimes people just have poor grammar and writing skills. None of that is important to me unless the meaning of a post is jumbled or incomprehensible. In that case I try to parrot back the message I think the poster is trying to express. There is never a need to be nasty or critical of others because of their writing ability.

Sometimes if a poster consistently misspells a key technical term like "apature" instead of "aperture", I may correct them gently in the same way I would correct any misstatement of facts. But generally I ignore grammar and spelling issues if the meaning of a post is clear. I don't see it as my job to teach others how to "rite and spel"

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