My company produced a high-end brand video for a client. They loved it, and it helped get them at least one client worth over a million dollars - and that’s just the one we know about.
A year later, they asked for all the raw footage so that another company could use our work to make another video. Our contract clearly stated that the client only owned the finished video, not the parts. However, we didn’t complain - we asked them to provide us with a hard drive and pay us for the time it would take to get copy files from the archive (on LTO tape, in an archival vault across the country) and send them.
Their response? They threatened to sue us and slander our company’s name online unless we agreed to work for free. They also said they’d never work with us again, and took some nasty potshots at our company. This from a company who claims its core values include “treating people with respect.”
I have a sneaking suspicion that if I do pull that LTO tape from archive, I will find that it has somehow been damaged or erased in storage. Not so coincidentally, I’ve decided one of our core values is never to work for bullies, and certainly never for free.