Find answers here to most questions about ordering or licensing material from GBH


How can I order a screener of a program with a time code?

For professional licensing requests ONLY, we can provide a copy of the program with burned-in time code as a digital file for $50.

Can I obtain copies of source materials (interviews, news footage, b-roll, etc)?

We can provide screening copies of these materials for a fee for professional licensing requests only.

How can I find out the source of a shot? Can you send me a shot log from one of your programs?

No. We do not release our program log but we can provide information to you about the source of the shots you are inquiring about for a fee of $50 per shot.

How to License

What format and codec is the digital master file for GBH footage?

We deliver broadcast-quality high-resolution digital files in most codecs. Most frequently requested are Pro Res HQ or Pro Res 422.

What is the licensing process for footage?

Once it has been determined that material is licensable, we will send you a license agreement which you sign and return to us which will specify the license and digitizing fees. It can then take up to 48 hours to process your digital files before they can be delivered. Your broadcast-quality master files are delivered for download via our online service. We will send you an executed license agreement and credit card receipt (if applicable) as soon as they are available.

How do I pay for the license and digitizing fees?

We accept all major credit cards. If you are licensing a large amount of footage, we prefer that you pay via ACH or wire transfer. Information on how to do this is on the bottom of the invoice.

Is everything in your programs and on your websites available for licensing?

No. Because we are a program-based archive, WGBH does not necessarily own copyright to all the footage within any given program. While we can’t license footage that we don’t own, we can sometimes provide access to the footage for a fee and with permission from the copyright holder. We can also source this footage for you for a fee.

Why can’t I find footage from a certain program online or in the digital clips?

We have millions of hours of footage and other materials in the GBH Archive and we are unable to clip and catalog all of it. Please contact us if you can’t find what you need on our site.

Is some of your original footage restricted?

Certain material is unavailable for licensing due to reasons such as the sensitive nature of the footage or agreements with interview subjects/locations. Frontline footage, for example, cannot be used for advocacy purposes. Footage from very recent programs may also be unavailable.

Can you license footage from all or any PBS station?

GBH is only one station in the PBS system and we can license only our own original material. Please contact other PBS stations directly to license their content.


Do you sell copies of programs?

No. Please refer to http://www.shoppbs.org for the latest catalog of available programs. Please note that many PBS programs are no longer available for distribution.

I have an old VHS copy of one of your programs. Can I make a DVD or digital copy?

No. Your purchase does not permit you to duplicate or alter the program for any purpose, to distribute the program through any network, or to digitize, encode and/or place the program on a digital server.

Isn’t PBS footage and content in the public domain?

No. Our content is protected by U.S. copyright law and its use may be subject to the permission of WGBH, performers, unions, or other third parties.