Fiverr Forum

Voice Over Gig Commercial License Fee...MUST EDUCATE BUYERS!

A number of issues have already came up from clients purchasing voice over for commercial use. When the fee is brought up it is treated as a big surprise and buyers are feeling like they are being cheated or feel as if it is a sneaky way of fiverr getting more money. We have had lost a few sales due to it and had to overlook the fee on others. Fiverr should really educate the buyers some how with a notice of some sort explaining what the fee is and why as well as WHEN it is required. Has any one else had issue with clients and the new fee?

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Here’s the problem with having to purchase the “commercial use license” - no seller I’ve found understands that they must give written notice by signing a release with their true identity.



We had this problem with the seller I used and my client had the same problem with the 25+ VO gigs he purchased.

Buyers need to be made aware that simply purchasing the commercial release does NOT grant commercial release.



There can be no oral agreement per Fiverr TOS and… without knowing the “true legal identity” of the person who created the content AND will release the content with a written release… the whole thing appears to be improperly applied. An avatar cannot sign a binding contract of release for commercial use.


What makes just those two gigs need an additional payment?


If you purchase for your business: a logo, a video testimonial, whiteboard video, image of someone holding a sign, Facebook or Google cover art, an article.. etc - then by all reasons these too would need an additional payment for commercial release...?

Therein lies the problem that using anything created on Fiverr for your business should then ultimately need a release payment and a copyright release form stating the same. Correct?

I see it getting to be rather expensive here if all gigs used for commercial purposes (as stated below) needed a Commercial Use License.

"... If you intend to use it ... for any purpose that is directly or indirectly in connection with any business, or other undertaking intended for profit, you will need to buy the Commercial Use License through a Gig Extra and will have broader rights that cover your business use."



See the problem here?



Stanford Copyright and Fair Use Center

http://fairuse.stanford.edu

2 Likes

This is only my personal opinion as a buyer and seller. I think that the Commercial License extra is a poorly executed idea. If it is added to my categories later it will probably also be done automatically without asking me, and that is an insult to me as a Fiverr user. Once I catch it, I will disable it just as I did with the Getty extra. If I ever decide to charge for any extra rights for my gigs, I plan to use a regular extra and word it clearly and as I see fit in the gig description and the extra.



Fiverr has gone for years as a work-for-hire site and while some sellers did charge extra for licenses or copyrights, they had to make it very clear to their buyers or Fiverr wouldn’t back them. (Sometimes Fiverr probably didn’t back them even if they made it clear.) This sudden change took many buyers and sellers by surprise. I’m against it altogether for now.



I don’t fault any individual seller for using it, since it is available and is their right. If someone chooses to use it, I think it is sneaky to not tell the buyer before the work is done. I do not think it is a good move on Fiverr’s part and if a seller asking me about it directly, I would advise against using it. Again - all this is my personal opinion as a buyer and seller and I’m adding it to the thread because I am glad for Fiverr to know my opinion on it.

Reply to @annai80: Had the same issue purchasing a VO for a client. Seemed deceptive. We read and re-read copyright info and as far as we could tell, the charges seemed ludicrous. What is the purpose of ordering a VO at $5? We stopped buying VO work here due to this reason.

I imagine this method may pour over to videos soon.

Fiverr Buyer Beware…Caveat Emptor!



Here’s a situation that happened this weekend. In fact, the response I got from customer service was less than an hour ago.



I purchased a voice over gig for $5. I provided the seller with a script of 133 words with a couple basic instructions.



Seller completed the gig within in hours and in delivery said I needed to purchase the commercial license. Nothing in his Gig description indicated such. We have passed several emails back and forth debating the US copyright law regarding Work for Hire. I contend a license is not needed since the transaction qualifies for work for hire.



The seller doesn’t necessarily disagree but, rather, indicates it’s not necessary for personal use but would be for commercial use. I believe the US Law does not descriminate between personal and commercial use. I believe it indicates full copyright ownership to the buyer as if he were the author. To me that implies rights to any kind of use.



I submitted this to customer support this morning to get their ruling.



Here’s what I told them…



tkbright Today at 10:05

I am disputing the need for purchasing a commercial license for a voice over that I ordered from Paulhal. His gig description did not include any reference to such and he accepted my gig without any mention or clarification otherwise.



I provided the seller with written script for the voice over request. The problem, is that the seller, Paulhal, requested I purchase the license after he accepted and performed the gig. The request came with the delivery of the gig. There was no mention of it prior.



The Fiverr TOS clearly states that the delivered product will be considered work for hire as defined by the US Copyright Laws.



re: http://copyright.gov/circs/circ09.pdf



SUPREME COURT INTERPRETATION

If an independent contractor created the work, and the

work was “specially ordered or commissioned,” part 2 of the

definition above applies. An “independent contractor” is

someone who is not an employee under the general common

law of agency.



A work created by an independent contractor can be a

work made for hire only if (a) it falls within one of the nine

categories of works listed in part 2 above and (b) there is a

written agreement between parties specifying that the work

is a work made for hire.



UNDER DEFINITION OF LAW

Item b. a work specially ordered or commissioned for use.

Item 2. as a part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work



PARAGRAPH 2: WORKS MADE FOR HIRE

"There is, however, an exception to this principle: “works made for hire.”

If a work is made for hire, an employer is considered the author even if an

employee actually created the work. The employer can be a firm, an organization,

or an individual."



I request a ruling from you!



My opinion is that the option for a seller to request a license after the fact is sneaky and underhanded and deceitful and nothing more than a revenue scheme. Much like buying a car and having it delivered to then learn you will have to pay extra for the engine. I realize this is relatively new for Fiverr but I see legal problems down the road around this issue.





U.S. Copyright Office

http://copyright.gov



Here’s what they told me…



Rey Today at 15:24

Hi there,

Thank you for contacting Fiverr Customer Support. According to our Terms of Service you can reference the Following section:



"Ownership and limitations:Unless clearly stated otherwise on the sellers Gig page/description, when the work is delivered, and subject to payment, the buyer is granted all intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, copyrights for the work delivered from the seller, and the seller waives any and all moral rights therein. The delivered work shall be considered work-for-hire under the U.S. Copyright Act.



In the event the delivered work does not meet the requirements of work-for-hire or when US Copyright Act does not apply, the seller expressly agrees to assign to buyer the copyright in the delivered work. All transfer and assignment of intellectual property to buyer shall be subject to full payment for the Gig and the delivery may not be used if payment is cancelled for any reason.



For removal of doubt, in custom created work (such as art work, design work, report generation etc.), the delivered work shall be the exclusive property of buyer, and seller assigns all rights, title and interest in the delivered work. Some Gigs (including for custom created work) charge additional payments (through Gig Extras) for a Commercial Use License.



This means that if you purchase the Gig for personal use, you will own all rights you require for such use, and will not need the Commercial Use License. If you intend to use it for any charge or other consideration, or for any purpose that is directly or indirectly in connection with any business, or other undertaking intended for profit, you will need to buy the Commercial Use License through a Gig Extra and will have broader rights that cover your business use."



However the seller’s Gig had the extra to purchase the commercial use license. Extra’s are only in relation to specific Gig’s. If the Gig extra is for commercial use license it is consider to be part of the original Gig, that means the seller did include it on their Gig and in order to user the material provided commercially you must purchase the commercial use license.

I also find this very misleading since it seems to pop up as a surprise after the gig has been purchased. I chose not to add it to my extras since I did not want to go through the headache. I totally agree, Fiverr should make the buyer more aware of this new feature.

madmoo said: Why not put a paragraph in your gig description to explain if you have added it, then it won't be a surprise to anyone other than those who don't read (ie the majority, but that's THEIR fault not yours).


Great suggestion!
2 Likes

I’ve never purchased a voiceover. What fee are you talking about please?

I would like to read the license. Can someone copy it and paste it here? or paste a link to it so I can understand what this “commercial use license” is?

Wow this is an update I would like to know about too because I have hired some illustration work in the past.

Here you can read about the license



http://support.fiverr.com/hc/en-us/articles/204832257-NEW-For-Commercial-Use-Extra




Fiverr Customer Support

http://support.fiverr.com



Thanks Annai, too bad that link doesn’t show the actual license itself. I’d like to give it a read.

Reply to @jamescott: If you click on the link you can see find “license details” marked in blue. This also takes you to another section where “TOS” is marked in blue. Maybe you can find your info there :wink:

I basically see it as this for my gigs.



If its for a commercial or advert radio online or otherwise it should be paid



If its for an answerphone message or charity non profit company then it should not



I dont know if others see this a different way



Tarnia

1 Like

For Commercial Use? Of course, everyone is getting paid. This is not a charity.

Adding this extra is a bad idea. Everything sold on here should be considered work for hire, meaning that the buyer gets all rights to the work. By creating separate licensing categories, sellers and buyers will become confused. Buyers will not pay extra unless they are sensitive to legal consequences and in those cases, these buyers will just pick a seller who doesn’t charge extra for commercial use. Buyers who are not sensitive to legal consequences will just not pay the extra charge. The truth is that in almost every circumstance, the use of work will be for a commercial purpose. So it makes more sense to make this a default assumption. This will avoid confusion and keep the lawyers away.

So basically, if you are a seller, my advise is you don’t offer commercial use as an add-on. Just include it in your service. If you can’t be commercially successful here at fiverr, you may want to try a different venue to peddle your work.

-D

Fiverr Buyer Beware!

fiverr

Do read TOS from fiverr. It clearly states that once the transaction has been made between seller and buyer that the buyer retains full ownership, HOWEVER, if sellers is offering an option to purchase rights for commercial use then the buyer MUST purchase it if he/she wants full ownership.

Ownership and limitations: unless clearly stated otherwise in the Gig description text, when the work is delivered, the buyer is granted all intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, copyrights for the work delivered from the seller and the seller waives any and all moral rights therein. For removal of doubt, in custom created work (such as art work, design work, report generation etc.), the delivered service shall be the exclusive property of buyer. The seller expressly agrees to assign to buyer the copyright in any delivered services that do not meet the requirements of a work-for-hire under the U.S. Copyright Act. Additionally, independent of the U.S. Copyright Act, the seller agrees that unless he indicated otherwise in the Gig description, once the order is completed the seller assigns along with it to the buyer, to the fullest extent possible under the law, all of its rights, title and interest, if any, in and to the delivered service and waives any and all moral rights in connection therewith.<<

2 Likes

As a commercial buyer, I won’t purchase the “commercial use license” here on Fiverr again. I want to, because I use these work-for-hire orders for business purposes and I consider it fair trade. But Fiverr sellers can’t even provide a “simple” written text form or a document for a copyright release. When I purchase a “commercial use license” for $20.00 I want a document for proof of purchase, all of its rights, title and interest.
In order to recieve a true legal document, the seller would need to sign a copyright release with their true identity via E-Signature. Here on Fiverr, I recieve nada.

I ask this;
Just because “Fiverr automatically adds” the “commercial use license” gig extra to a sellers listing, does this legally mean the seller is offering an option to purchase full rights for commercial use ?
Then the buyer MUST purchase it if he/she wants full ownership.
Or
"Ownership and limitations: unless clearly stated otherwise in the Gig description text, when the work is delivered, the buyer is granted all intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, copyrights for the work delivered from the seller and the seller waives any and all moral rights therein."
What proprietary right does this declaration exclude that would be granted with the purchase of “commercial use license” ?

Which is it? Where is the material proof of the Commercial Use License that I paid for ? Without material proof of “commercial use license” being delivered, is the order complete ?

Reply to @marketman: So, let’s say that I close my Fiverr account and I make a new one with the username mcuban and my avatar is a photo of the Dallas-based Mark Cuban. Theoretically I could be Mark Cuban or I could be Jane Smith living in Australia. Fiverr isn’t tough on this kind of thing so I could easily get buyers. I create you a sports themed logo that appears original, and I state in my gig description that I retain ownership rights of the logo but I’m giving you lifetime usage rights for $5. I sign my inbox message Mark Cuban. No other paperwork is exchanged, no ID shown.

Who legally owns the logo? You? Mark Cuban? Jane Smith? Bugs Bunny?

If I had charged you $40 for the Commercial Rights license, who did you buy them from?

Reply to @around86: the problem with this is that we don’t know who the actual developer/creator/artist is. Anyone can come along and lay claim to the work… an avatar cannot sign a contract. Legally, you have to know who the buyer is - and a contract needs to be created.

This commercial fee is the first I’ve seen on any freelance site. As well, even at voiceover websites, there is no additional commercial use fee.