License agreements

All sales and rentals from the Video Data Bank are regulated by a contract with each artist. The artist holds copyright for their works, however the VDB has the right to license specific rights under its agreement with the artists. During check-out, customers will be asked to review and acknowledge the rights and restrictions which apply to their order type. This online contract will serve as an acknowledgment that you and/or your institution understand the rights of purchase and will comply with this license agreement. We recommend customers print or retain a copy of this agreement for their records.

Please direct any questions regarding license rights to the Video Data Bank Distribution Manager


General License Terms – All Rentals & Purchases

Payment, Delivery & Returns

If you have received a damaged or flawed copy, please notify us within 5 days of receipt, and we will replace the damaged copy. The Video Data Bank does not provide discounted or free replacement copies under any circumstances except the receipt of a damaged or flawed copy. Due to the duplicable nature of the video product, Video Data Bank cannot accept returns (or issue refunds) for orders that were placed in error.

Payment must be made in advance of shipment of the material (or within 30 days of delivery for US institutions using Purchase Order).

Production of Promotional Materials

Purchasing / renting institutions have the right to select, produce, and display still images taken from each title for materials including flyers, posters, brochures, newspapers, magazines, and other signage for the purposes of publicity, promotion, and education. All stills used for digital or print materials must display the following credit: “Copyright of the artist, courtesy of the Video Data Bank, www.vdb.org.”

Purchasing / renting institutions have the right to produce excerpts of moving images and video clips from materials for use on their institutional website, and on inner-institutional intranets for the sole purpose of promotion, publicity, and education. Video clips shall not exceed the running time of 00:30 seconds.

Limitations to Broadcast, Cablecast, and Digital Format Rights

Purchase of material does NOT include the right to upload, broadcast, cablecast, or present material in whole or in part in analog or digital format on the Internet or on inner-institutional intranets (with the exception of 00:30 second clips for publicity and promotion as outlined above).

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Library Purchase - Educational License

Duration & Duplication

Purchase applies to the standard life of the tape or disc. In case of loss or damage to original material, the Video Data Bank does not provide discounted or free replacement copies.

Purchasing institution may NOT copy or convert the title to any other analog or digital formats, including additional DVD copies.

Purchase does include the right to translate text of material into the official language(s) of the country in which the buyer institution is located. The VDB requests that in the case of translation, we receive a copy of the translated material for our files.

Public Performance Rights

Material may be used for cultural or institutional use only. Materials may be screened in classrooms, libraries or screening venues on the premises or property of the purchasing institution.

Educational purchase from the Video Data Bank comes with no  "public performance rights," which the law defines as the "right to screen at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of people from the public who are not necessarily affiliated with the purchasing institution are assembled". 

The purchasing institution cannot lend, rent, sell, or otherwise disseminate the materials to another cultural or educational institution, the general public, or any other third party for institutional or home use or for use outside of the purchasing institution including the use in touring programs. This provision supersedes all First Sale Doctrine rights.

Addendum for SURVEYING THE FIRST DECADE – Licensees of this compilation acknowledge limitations on public performance rights. The collection may be used for educational use only conducted on the premises or property of the purchasing institution. This anthology may be used in on-site libraries and classrooms but may not be used or removed from the premises of the purchasing institution.

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Educational Streaming License

Under an Educational Streaming License (ESL) the Video Data Bank provides a file/s of a title/s to the academic library, and allows them to encode, host, and stream it to their users via a secure institutional network with a password-protected connection. An unlimited number of viewers within the institution are able to access the title/s once made available in this way. VDB title/s can be uploaded and viewed from multiple locations simultaneously, and the title/s can also be viewed multiple times, allowing students to review the material as necessary for assignments. Overall, the ESL maximizes the number of users who have access to VDB titles. 

Terms of Educational Streaming License (ESL)

  • This license is understood as an Addendum to the rights granted by the Educational Purchase Agreement that accompanied the Library Purchase from the VDB.
  • Licensee accepts from the Video Data Bank a limited license to offer these programs for the duration of one/ three/ five year/s.
  • Licensee agrees to the terms and conditions of the Addendum by accepting delivery of the digital file/s.
  • The License is limited to the rights to upload digital file/s onto a secure institutional network with a password-protected connection.  Rights must be properly limited to streaming only for users affiliated with your organization.
  • The License does allow for off-campus access to title/s, provided that access is granted only through a secure institutional network.
  • Licensee acknowledges that the VDB title/s may not be utilized in any manner other than as specified herein, and in no event shall:  The title be publicly broadcast, The title be uploaded to the open Internet, The title be exhibited in campus museums or exhibitions, The title be offered in downloadable format to users.
  • Licensee agrees to the removal of the VDB title/s from server at the completion of the license term.  Performance rights to the DVD version of this title will remain in place for the life of the disc.

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Single Screening Rental License

Terms of Rental

The exact screening rental date/s must be defined when the order is placed with the Video Data Bank. Material is only licensed for the usage dates specified and agreed upon in advance of the program. Screening rental is defined as a scheduled one-time presentation of material. Extended exhibition or ongoing looped display is NOT covered within this license. Contact VDB for an exhibition quote.

Material will be exhibited only in its entirety and may not be altered or excerpted in any way.

Renting institution has the right to use title on compilation reel with other titles only for the duration of a public screening in which the title appears. After the initial screening or exhibition period has occurred, these materials will be destroyed and/or returned to the Video Data Bank. In no other case may the material be copied in whole or in part.

In case of loss, failure to return, or damage to the rental materials, the renting institution will be liable for the current cost of materials, staff time and fees spent in pursuit of the item.

The material rented from the Video Data Bank comes with "public performance rights" which the law defines as the "right to screen at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of people from the public who are not necessarily affiliated with the purchasing institution are assembled".

The renting institution has the right to charge admission fees to the general public.

The renting institution cannot lend, rent, sell or otherwise disseminate material to another cultural or educational institution, the general public or any other third party for institutional or home use or for use outside of the purchasing institution including the use in touring programs. This provision supersedes all First Sale Doctrine rights.

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Institutional Collections License (Archival Acquisition)

Duration & Duplication

Purchase applies to the complete life of the video artwork, for the premises or property of the purchasing institution in perpetuity.

In case of corrupted or flawed digital files please notify the Video Data Bank with 30 days of receipt, and we will replace the files or refund the payment. Refunds will not be given for videos returned for content.

Purchasing institution has the right to transfer Material from archival format provided by the VDB to duplicates in any other existing or future analog or digital format, for purpose of display or archival storage.

Purchasing institution may contact the VDB at any point to purchase screening copies of the Material for a nominal at-cost fee.

Purchasing institution has the right to use title on compilation reel with other titles only for the duration of a public exhibition held on the premises or property of the purchasing institution. After the initial screening or exhibition period has occurred, these Materials will not be screened in public without approval from the Video Data Bank. Additional charges may apply.

Purchase does include the right to translate text of material into the official language(s) of the country in which the buyer institution is located. The VDB requests that in the case of translation, we receive a copy of the translated material for our files.

Public Performance Rights

Material may be used for cultural or educational institutional use only. Materials may be screened or exhibited on a loop in classrooms, libraries, galleries, or in public screening venues on the premises or property of the purchasing institution.

The material purchased from the Video Data Bank comes with "public performance rights," which the law defines as the "right to screen at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of people from the public who are not necessarily affiliated with the purchasing institution are assembled". Extended exhibitions or looped display within museums and/or galleries that are part of the purchasing institution are permitted.

The purchasing institution has the right to charge admission fees to the general public.

The purchasing institution cannot lend, loan, rent, sell or otherwise disseminate material to another cultural or educational institution, the general public or any other third party without the written approval of the Video Data Bank. This provision supersedes all First Sale Doctrine rights and includes restrictions on touring exhibitions.

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Exhibition Rental License

Duration & Duplication

The exact rental period must be defined when the order is placed with the Video Data Bank. The provided title may be exhibited on a loop for an unlimited amount of showings during exhibition period.

Material will be exhibited only in its entirety and may not be altered or excerpted in any way.

Public Performance Rights

The Material may be used in non-profit organizations or in cultural or educational institutions only. Materials may be screened in classrooms, libraries, galleries or any other public screening venue on the premises or property of the renting institution or in off-premises organizations that are part of the renting institution.

Renting institution has the right to use title on compilation reel with other titles only for the duration of a public screening in which the title appears. After the initial exhibition period has occurred, these materials will be destroyed and/or returned to the Video Data Bank. In no other case may the material be copied in whole or in part.

In case of loss, failure to return, or damage to the rental materials, the renting institution will be liable for the current cost of materials, staff time and fees spent in pursuit of the item.

The material rented from the Video Data Bank comes with "public performance rights" which the law defines as the "right to screen at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of people from the public who are not necessarily affiliated with the purchasing institution are assembled".

The renting institution has the right to charge admission fees to the general public.

The renting institution cannot lend, rent, sell or otherwise disseminate material to another cultural or educational institution, the general public or any other third party for institutional or home use or for use outside of the purchasing institution including the use in touring programs. This provision supersedes all First Sale Doctrine rights.

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Individual Purchase License

Terms of Purchase

Licensee acknowledges this video purchase is for individual home use only and comes with NO PUBLIC PERFORMANCE rights. The purchaser understands and agrees that the titles:

  • May not be screened or exhibited publicly in any commercial, theatrical, or institutional presentation, including classroom, educational, non-profit and instructional usage.
  • May not be uploaded, broadcast, cablecast, or webcast in any manner.
  • May not be duplicated, transferred, excerpted or edited to any other analog or digital format.

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