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How do I get my photos cleared for Editorial and Commercial use?

When a photo is uploaded to Twenty20, it will eventually see the eyes of one of our image reviewers who have been rigorously trained in the legal nuances of clearing images for commercial use. Each editor evaluates images to check for things that would not be able to be cleared for commercial use. 

You can read more about the difference between editorial and commercial use and why they matter here.


How long does it take for my photo to be reviewed and cleared?

Since thousands of photos are upload every day, there is no definitive time period that your photo will be reviewed. Don't worry- having your photo 'Pending Review' doesn't hurt the chances of it being sold! Customers can request an immediate review when they need to know if they can purchase a certain photo for commercial use. 


Why wasn't my photo cleared for commercial use?

Some of the main reasons that images can’t be cleared for commercial use:

  • Lack of property or model releases
  • Visible company branding, trademarks, or logos
  • Isolated buildings, recognizable interiors or other identifiable property
  • Visible artworks and design (ex: digital art, illustrations, graffiti or a designer piece of furniture)
  • Anything that could be linked back to a person's identity/property is shown (ex: license plate)

If your image cannot be cleared for commercial use, it will still very likely be able to be used for editorial purposes.

For more information, check out this video: Todd Talks Licensing from Twenty20 on Vimeo.


Why wasn't my photo cleared for editorial use?

When a photo is uploaded to our site, our legal team runs it through our system. If the photo is found elsewhere on the internet, we flag the photo and put a hold on its clearance. Our system detects that the photo may not belong to the Twenty20 photographer because it exists somewhere else. If you can provide information showing that the photo is yours, or other sites that the photo is on and your affiliation, we can clear the photo.


How do I know if my photo has been reviewed and cleared?

When you're viewing a photo, you'll be able to find information about that photo's availability under Photo Details:

If the photo details look like the screenshot below, it means the photo has been cleared for both commercial and editorial use.

If the photo details look like the screenshot below, it is because something about this photo means it’s not cleared for commercial use


What does it mean when a photo is "Pending Review"?

If the photo details show that commercial use is "Pending Review", it means the photo might be available for commercial use, but our editors just haven't personally reviewed it yet. It might also mean that we haven't yet received the model releases for any recognizable people in the photo.

If your photo is "Pending Review", it does not hurt your chances of selling it. When a customer wants to know if the photo is commercially usable, they can request to “Get it reviewed today,” which notifies them within 24 hours. (Note: This is only for customers; photographers can not request this of their own photos.)


Why are some of my photos not cleared for Editorial Use?

Photos that have not been cleared for Editorial Use have been flagged by our system as pending ownership verification. To learn more about why your photo may have been flagged and how to get your photo cleared for editorial use, read this article.


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