Creative Brief: Commercial vs. Editorial Sports

Creative Brief: Winter Sports - Snowboarder

Creative Brief – Special Keyword Code: WINSPORP5BRIEF

Did you know that Beijing is the world’s first city to host both the summer and winter Olympic Games? As the 2022 Winter Olympics draws closer, we’re looking for commercial and editorial footage of all winter sports at amateur and professional levels. Read on for some epic thought starters and key licensing info.


What’s the difference between commercial and editorial licenses?

When our curators review your footage, they’ll decide if the video can be distributed with a commercial license or an editorial license.

  • Commercial licenses allow companies, like advertising agencies, to use footage (or other media) for selling a product or service.
  • Editorial licenses can be used only for communications that do not sell for profit. These are typically news agencies, documentaries, etc.


When is footage marked commercial?

Footage is marked for commercial use when:

Without these forms, the following is acceptable for commercial use:

  • Local and school games
  • Jerseys and other equipment without names
  • Animated clips and illustrations


Face-Off In Ice Hockey Game by MayStudio.

There is no visible team name, therefore a property release for logos is not required. The artist has provided a completed model release on behalf of the recognizable player.


When is footage marked editorial?

Footage that is marked for editorial use features:

  • Recognizable sports jerseys with visible team names, player names, etc.
  • Identifiable buildings, such as a stadium, without a signed property release.
  • Recognizable faces of people without signed model releases.
  • 3rd party intellectual property such as sponsor logos in the stadium, on shoes, shirts, etc.


Scoring A Goal In An Ice Hockey Game by eurospiders.

Here you can see the numbers and names on jerseys, as well as recognizable faces.


When is footage not suitable for licensing at all?

Clips that violate copyright laws or other rights are not suitable for licensing and will be rejected by our curation team.

Examples not suitable for licensing:

  • Live shots from ticketed events of large games like the NHL and Olympic Games.
  • Footage of television sets broadcasting the above games


Creative Brief – Thought Starters:


  • Fan Culture — Think national flags painted on cheeks, crazy costumes and wigs, sunglasses, watching TV games, fan zones at stadiums or indoors, spectators doing the wave, wearing sports jerseys (editorial), culturally diverse fans across the globe, etc.
  • Equipment shots — Hockey sticks, skis, ice skates, goals, pucks, etc.
  • Outside sports — Ice hockey on frozen ponds, skating on outdoor rinks, mountain sports.
  • Parents teaching their kids — How to ski, sled, skate, etc.
  • Training schedule — Parents waking their kids up in the early morning hours to get to practice.
  • Traveling to stadiums — Public transport overcrowded with fans in masks and jerseys, etc.
  • COVID-19 measures at sporting events — Fans having their temperature taken, wearing masks, etc.



  • Stay safe, warm, and healthy, especially when shooting outdoors—keeping up to date with government or public health agency recommendations.
  • Cast talent with real sport skills for believable content.
  • Plan your shoot with licensing in mind, as this will affect your choice of wardrobe, location, and shot list. Check out the guide below for more.

Suggested Keywords: winter sports, winter olympics 2022, skiing, figure skating, ice hockey, snowboarding, extreme sports, adrenaline sports, other sports names if applicable, etc.

Typical Users: News & Media Organizations, Ad Agencies, Lifestyle Brands, Television Studios

Casting Considerations: Race, age, and gender diversity, authenticity with talent and imagery. Accept the challenge to remove artificiality from your setup. In other words, keep it REAL. These considerations will play an important role in the success of your shoot.

Location Diversity: Snowparks, hills, stadium and arenas, frozen ponds, etc.


Before You Shoot:


  • Firstly, please check existing content in the Pond5 marketplace
  • Secondly, think about a visual approach that will result in new and fresh footage
  • Lastly, remember that each shot must communicate a clear message


Submission Checklist:


  • Remember to tag your clips with the keyword code: WINSPORP5BRIEF
  • Also, don‘t forget to submit all completed property and model releases
  • No logos or brands may be visible in any of the clips
  • Don’t forget to add any applicable conceptual keywords to the clips

Top image: A Snowboarder In A Ski Mask And A Backpack Is Riding On A Snow-Covered Slope by yanik88.