It has come to the JPC’s attention that the unions have been demanding payments be made to performers for commercials that have been uploaded to Internet services like YouTube without the advertiser’s or advertising agency producer’s authorization and that the advertiser or advertising agency has an obligation to notify YouTube to pull down a commercial that has been posted without authorization. As far as the industry is concerned, there are no fees due for unauthorized uploads. Moreover, there is no legal or contractual obligation on the part of the advertiser or advertising agency producer to demand that YouTube pull down a posting. While the advertiser has the right to do so as the copyright owner of a commercial, it is not obligated to do so by law and most certainly not obligated to do so under the collective bargaining agreements with the unions. Of course, any performer who appears in a commercial that has be improperly uploaded is free to pursue whatever individual rights her or she may have for violating the performer’s rights of privacy or other personal rights. The industry’s position is fair and reasonable. It would be prohibitively costly and time consuming for advertisers and advertising agencies to monitor the Internet for every unauthorized upload. Nor is it reasonable to expect an advertiser or advertising agency to set up the internal bureaucracy to administer a policy regarding demands for removal. Should you receive any union demand that asserts a fee is owed to performers for a commercial that is uploaded without authorization, the JPC wants you to be aware of the industry position as you determine how to respond to such a union demand. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Douglas Wood or Greg Hessinger.