2020 is the year of the virtual contract

Since the beginning of time, entertainers have worked on a pay or play theory.  I show up and play your event, and I get paid. Over time entertainers have added clauses to their contracts to protect not only the buyer but the Entertainer.  Liability coverage is addressed, cancelation clauses are added, and even the number of M&M’s colors is defined in detail.

In 2020, I now had a pandemic clause added to contracts. I’ll go out on the limb here and say, nobody had a pandemic clause in a show contract in 2019.

The pandemic clause gives both parties, the buyer and the Entertainer, and out for an event canceling.  Neither party is held financially responsible for the show not happening.  After all, the problem is bigger than the buyer or I can solve.

The Covid-19 started the rush to create a virtual show.

Like many entertainers around the world, I researched the Internet for ways to broadcast a live presentation into clients’ homes.  In doing this, I now have more contractual clauses filling up what was once a simple contract.

My contract includes terms like intellectual property, rebroadcasting licensing, unauthorized duplications, broadcast signals, equipment breakdown, acts of God, strikes, equipment or transmission failure, or damage reasonably beyond its control, or other causes reasonably beyond its control.  Worlds like these are uncommon in the standard play-n-pay contract.

I’m now addressing unauthorized guest Zoombombing a presentation.  Replacing my diva request for an Mt. Dew is now access to passwords and user’s rights to Facebook.

Technical rider for a online virtual show

I added in transmission failures as neither party should be liable for an Internet service provider having a catastrophic failure or being shut down.  At present, I might have to reconsider this statement and address looters or protesters who are interfering with the transmission facility.

Here are the clauses I’ve added.

  • The Entertainer online show retains the intellectual property of the Entertainer, and any rebroadcast, retransmission, duplicated, or copying of the show without the express written consent of the Entertainer is prohibited.
  • This Agreement shall commence on the date upon which this Agreement is signed by the Purchaser and will remain in effect for 7-days from the day aired/posted unless earlier terminated in Purchaser agrees that upon the expiration or termination of this Agreement, any digital recordings created by the Entertainer under the terms of this Agreement will be erased or destroyed, unless a new, mutually acceptable license agreement is negotiated.
  • The Purchaser shall provide adequate security to prevent theft, pirating, and unauthorized exhibition, duplication, or copying of the Program(s). The Purchaser will stream the digitized content only to Authorized Users within the Territory. The Purchaser will take commercially reasonable steps to see that the content remains protected.  The Entertainer will publicize a copyright policy regarding its digital programs prominently in its service area. Purchaser shall give prompt notice to Entertainer of any unauthorized activity relating to the Program(s).
  • The Entertainer is not held liable if a broadcast signal intrusion or hijacking occurs during of Entertainer’s broadcast.
  • If the Balloon Entertainer is materially incapacitated from fully performing his/her services because of illness, accident, physical disability, or breakdown of equipment, the Entertainer shall substitute an equal Entertainer of equal or better quality. In the event that a replacement Balloon Entertainer cannot be provided, this Agreement may be terminated, or a fee shall be due.
  • Entertainer hereby indemnifies, defends, and holds Purchaser harmless for any loss, cost, or damage incurred by Purchaser or its affiliates arising from Entertainer’s services provided hereunder. Entertainer hereby waives all claims and liens right against the Purchaser as a result of the Entertainer’s performance hereunder.
  • Entertainer shall keep and maintain at all times during the event, adequate commercial general liability, property/casualty, workers compensation, and other insurance as Entertainer deems appropriate. Such insurance shall name both Purchaser and Event Locations as additional insureds thereunder, including on a primary, non-contributory basis.
  • This Agreement shall not be deemed to create any employment or other relationships between Entertainer and Purchaser other than a relationship of the third party independent vendor.  Entertainer shall remain an independent contractor with no authority to bind Purchaser and shall hot be entitled to workers’ compensation, insurance, or other benefits afforded to employees of Purchaser.
  • In the event either party is unable to perform its obligations under the terms of this Agreement because of acts of God, strikes, equipment or transmission failure or damage reasonably beyond its control, or other causes reasonably beyond its control, such party shall not be liable for damages to the other for any damages resulting from such failure to perform or otherwise from such causes.

“A contract is an ask game, and if it asks for an hour, and I submit an hour, then it; an hour. When I look at the contract, I look at the obligations – where, when, how long,  and the compensations. If I agree to it, that’s the way it is. I have an obligation. They have an obligation”  – Chuck Barry. –

2 thoughts on “2020 is the year of the virtual contract”

  1. Many people will benefit from this information – everyone needs to protect themselves – I like how you are protecting yourself and your client – THEY will respect that — THAT’S being professional. Great job – PB

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