My dilemma

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a young HUD

On the path to Senior Punk Advisory from the world of a past nobody punk

Recently I was approached by Dave Grohl who is putting out a documentary about traveling bands. His media person approached me very forcefully. She wanted to license material that I may or may not be able to license. She did not want to take no for an answer. So, for fun I gave them the run around stating if they interview me in the documentary, I could talk about the image they wanted. They have not gotten back to me. Again, they want the material and not my experience or friendship.

This is my dilemma. Currently I find filmmakers, documentarians, and authors approaching me for information from my past. They seem to want to approach me as a friend, but often are only interested in sharing my history, licensing past material that was my hard work. I see it as they want to gather as much information from me, squeeze me like a lemon, and then push me aside. They put out the documentary, book and may exclude me as a source, edit me out or not pay me anything. I see them promoting their documentaries and books, yet they do not invite me on the expertise promotional panel. I feel like their gopher.  

I am perplexed on how to own myself from this process by saying no to them now. I have come out with self-published books to tell my story. The same people who want my information do not seem to want to support my products.

I consider my ten years of experience in the underground music world as valid. It must be because I was just approached by three people this week. I already documented the material they want years ago.

I just do not want to give myself and my information away so freely anymore. I have been burned and devalued a few times.

Yet there is also the part of me that wants to share in the full story that they are pursuing. I do want to promote my books. Yet the material they ask me for, may or may not be, copyrighted. I cannot give them permission to license some of the material they are asking me for.  Many staph people contributed to the work I was involved with. I did co-own a past publication, Los Angeles Flipside Fanzine that included records and live music video tapes and radio DJ tapes…. but at the time we did not believe or practice copyright laws.

I am perplexed and overwhelmed and simply do not know what to do. I do not want to hide my head in the sand I like sharing my story.

Do I state clearly that I charge a fee for all my words no matter how and where they are used? Can I consider myself as a Senior Advisor with publishing rights for all my shared material? Can I, is it feasible, set up a legal form stating that if you include my work that you must also include me as a credited source and have me on your promotional panel of experts?