In this day and age when content, images, and other multimedia files are easily published and circulated on the Internet, overstepping on legal bounds can happen easily and frequently. You may not know it, but not everything you do as a voice over artist is permissible. Without prior knowledge of voiceover work legal considerations, you could end up compromising years of hard work and client-list building.
Listed below are some important things you need to focus on when you do voiceover work for your clients.
- Permission to use previous voiceover work for future auditions.
Depending on the signed agreement between the voice over professional and the client, a voice over recording may become the property of the client after full payment. There are cases, however, wherein the artist may be granted royalties on the recording, but this will depend entirely on prior arrangements. Should you plan to use a prior recording as demos for succeeding auditions, it will do best if you ask for permission from the purchasing client first. This is especially crucial if the script or the material came from the client himself or herself.
- The question of brand names.
One of the easiest ways for a budding voice artist to gain recall is to use well-known brand names in demo recordings. Although this is understandable, it can be tricky and troublesome. For one, using a brand name without permission may result in legal troubles later on. Secondly, mentioning a brand in your recording could make you sound as if you really are working for that brand. This misrepresentation may make it difficult for you to establish trust with future clients.
- Imitation vs impersonation.
It’s not uncommon to hear about voiceovers that are actually imitations of famous recordings or actual advertisements. But here you have to tread with caution. If you are not the ‘official voice’ of a specific brand, it is best to veer away from mentioning a brand or imitating a personality who has previously endorsed the brand.
Nonetheless, if you have made it clear that your recording is no more than a parody, and not an underhanded imitation, the celebrity is less likely to pursue legal action.
Success as a voice artist cannot simply be measured in the number of projects you have finished. You also have to ensure that all your projects are completed without raising crucial legal questions. By taking into account some of these voiceover work legal considerations, you will have a clearer idea about what is permissible or not in terms of voice recording.