Podcast Agreement with Guests: What is it and Why do I Need One?

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A podcast guest agreement is a simple contract that can help you retain control of your podcast content when you feature a guest. Variously called a podcast ownership agreement, a podcast guest contract, podcast guest waiver or a podcast guest release form, guests sign before going on your show, ensuring you can not only use the material you record but also retain creative and expressive freedom.

This article centers around agreements between a podcast host and their guests, if you are looking for an agreement to use between podcast hosts (or owners of a podcast), check out this other article.

Why Do You Need a Podcast Guest Agreement?

Say you onboard and record a show with a guest and after, they disagrees about your content choices before airing. A podcast agreement clarifies who gets the final say on content – you, the podcast owner. If for example your guest decides they don’t want the episode to go out at all because they’ve changed their mind, with a podcast guest release agreement you’d have full ownership of the content to make that call or not. Therefore an agreement protects your time, energy, and resources, making it clear that you retain legal and creative control.

Honouring reasonable requests for changes from your guests can enhance both the show and working relationships with them. When it comes to changes you cannot agree on, however, a podcast agreement provides a written record that protects your rights.

Jump down to download the agreement.

Disclaimer: Our lawyers have reviewed this contract. The information provided is only of informative nature and may not apply in your country or state of residence. The podcast guest release and the contents of this article do not constitute legal advice. Consult your lawyer for specific advice regarding your specific situation or country of residence.

When Podcasts Go Bad … or Good

In a lawsuit, family members of a primary character on the S-Town podcast sued to prevent the podcast’s release following his death. A signed podcast agreement clearly stating who had the rights to the work, names, likenesses, or stories involved may have saved time, money, and heartache.

Of course, it’s not all bad news, a podcast guest release can also save you tons of time and money by not having to ask for permission to reuse the content. Say you get a book deal based on your podcast. Having a signed podcast agreement will save you tracking down all your guests and negotiating deals with every single one. And if you change your mind about the direction of your podcast or book and you want to edit or remarket past content, a signed podcast agreement allows you to go ahead without worrying that a previous guest might try to prevent you for doing so.

Whatever the size and scope of the podcast, copyright and privacy issues can crop up. It’s easier to move forward amicably with a partnership agreement.

Ownership Agreement

So, How Do You Engage in a Podcast Agreement and What Should One Include?

The easiest way to share a podcast agreement with your guests is to do so using an online service to sign the documents virtually like HelloSign or DocuSign. Your guests will be able to sign the release in seconds and you’ll have piece of mind that you and your podcast are protected.

There are multiple things to cover in a podcast guest agreement, here are some standard sections it should include:

Guest’s Consent

The document should contain the guest’s consent for you to use their name, image, and likeness in connection with the podcast. This includes the guest’s name, bio, logo, photograph, and voice. You might find it helpful to include language that would allow you to use these elements in connection with other projects, too, such as an ebook. Even if you paid to have a guest on your podcast, you may still be infringing their copyright if you don’t have their consent to air the content.

Broadcasting rights

Ask the guest to agree to relinquish the content broadcasting rights to you. Without this, your guest may be able to prevent you from airing the episode(s) entirely.

IP ownership

Specify who owns the podcast recording. Outline that the guest assigns all the intellectual property to you, the podcast owner.

A warrant and represent section

This demonstrates that the guest has the necessary rights to release the information they release to you. It prevents people offering you things that don’t really belong to them. And it helps ensure that information they share is true.

An indemnification clause

This standard and important clause requires the guest repay you should you incur any expenses, legal or otherwise, due to a breach of contract.

Payment or Compensation

If you are paying your guests, this should go in your partnership agreement. Include the precise amount or how you will calculate payment. You should also include the payment method and when payment should be made. If you are accepting goods or services in place of monetary payment, include those details, as precisely as possible, instead.

Grab Our Podcast Guest Agreement to Use for Your Podcast

If you are wondering where you can get a hold of a comprehensive podcast ownership agreement, sign up for our newsletter today and receive our version of the agreement in your inbox. Our podcast ownership agreement is easy to understand and will help protect you from future conflicts with your guest.

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    Conclusion

    Even if you don’t think you’ll need to exercise the rights covered by a podcast guest agreement, it’s wise to have them. By making a podcast ownership agreement a standard part of working with you, you avoid ambiguity and awkwardness from the start.

    Not every podcast provides guests with a podcast agreement form, but plenty wish they had. A podcast guest agreement can save you time, money, and stress. It gives you peace of mind that your expectations are clear and you are protected.

    A comprehensive podcast guest agreement answers questions that some guests or co-hosts might be embarrassed to ask, such as what to do if they dislike some of the content. They will appreciate you being upfront about your working relationship. A podcast guest agreement demonstrates your professionalism and that you want the best for your business and your guest.

    Related: Start a Podcast People Will Listen To [2023 Guide]

    Disclaimer: Our lawyers have reviewed this contract. The information provided is only of informative nature and may not apply in your country or state of residence. The podcast guest release and the contents of this article do not constitute legal advice. Consult your lawyer for specific advice regarding your specific situation or country of residence.