Fair Submissions: The Online Film Submission Platforms’ Code of Ethics
By signing the “Fair Submissions” common Code of Ethics, the online film submission platforms Festhome, FilmFestivalLife, Reelport, Shortfilmdepot and Uptofest express their common desire to share fair business practices. They commit to offer filmmakers, festivals and any other agent in the film industry guarantees of a service of quality.
Each of the signatory platforms agrees to comply with the following:
1. The signatories only accept submissions on behalf of film festivals with a signed agreement and/or their explicit prior consent. The agreement must be signed by an authorized and verified official festival representative.
2. The signatories have a validation policy in place to ensure that any active festival is a legitimate event due to take place on the dates and in the location announced, also taking into account online festivals and their specific nature.
3. The signatories require festival clients to provide a reasonably full set of rules and regulations including their festival fee if any which must be publicly available on the online platform with which the festival works and on the festival’s website. Upon film submission, filmmakers or authorized filmmakers’ representatives must agree to the rules and regulations provided by the festival. Each participating festival must also provide valid contact details (mailing address and email address). These contact details will also be publicly accessible on the platform.
4. The signatories commit to providing a service where each submission of a film to a festival is made freely and individually (as opposed to “en masse”) by filmmakers or by their authorized representatives after they have read and accepted the festival’s regulations.
5. The signatories commit to transparently breaking down and clearly communicating all fees involved with each submission (festival fees and service costs). All payments / banking operations must be handled by the platforms with the highest security standards.
7. The signatories provide film festivals with all necessary tools to communicate to both selected and non-selected filmmakers or their authorized representatives the result of their selection process.
8. In the event of a festival being irrevocably cancelled:
8.1. The signatories commit to refunding or re-crediting filmmakers or their authorized representatives with the equivalent amount of credit charged by the platform for each submission to the festival.
8.2. The signatories commit to requiring festivals to refund entry fees to filmmakers or their authorized representatives in the event that the collected fees were already transferred to the festival’s bank or PayPal account.
9. Video files uploaded to the signing platforms will not be made publicly available by either the signatories or by festival clients, unless there is a specific arrangement between those festivals and the copyright holders of each film. The signatories ensure that all video files are protected by active security measures and all users’ personal files and data uploaded to the platforms’ servers are properly protected, cannot be accessed publicly and will not be shared with any third party without prior consent of the rights owner.
10. The signatories commit to delivering quick and complete assistance and support to filmmakers and festivals using their online services.
11. The signatories do not require film festivals to use their services exclusively.
12. The signatories commit to not undermine or damage publicly the reputation or the integrity of the system of other platforms that have adhered to this Code of Ethics.
13. The signatories have an ongoing commitment towards this Code of Ethics. Any signatory that ceases to comply with this Code of Ethics will be immediately removed from this agreement.
14. Declaring compliance to the present Code of Ethics is not sufficient to be added to the signing parties of this document, or to publicly declare compliance to this Code and its intent. Similarly, the “Fair Submissions” logo is strictly reserved for the use of platforms who are official signatories of the Code of Ethics to which it is attached. Any online submissionplatform willing to adhere to this Common Code of Ethics must first accept verification of its actual implementation and shall have its name added to the list of official signatories upon unanimous decision only.