Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Censorship Patents

Public Park Designated Copyrighted Space 770

Posted by Zonk
from the built-with-public-funds dept.
wiggles writes "The City of Chicago recently completed a $475 million park/civic center known as Millennium Park. One of the central features is a sculpture officially called Cloud Gate and unofficially called "The Bean". The Bean is a giant, 3 story, 110-ton hunk of highly reflective steel. Photographers taking pictures of the sculpture have been charged money by the city. The park district is claiming that pictures of the park violate the designers' and artists' copyrights. Quoth Karen Ryan, the press director for the park's project, "The copyrights for the enhancements in Millennium Park are owned by the artist who created them. As such, anyone reproducing the works, especially for commercial purposes, needs the permission of that artist." In response, Chicagoland bloggers have been posting as many pictures as they can get of The Bean."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Public Park Designated Copyrighted Space

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:41PM (#11653811)
    Windy City, blow me.
  • by TimmyDee (713324) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:41PM (#11653812) Homepage Journal
    What happens to other publicly displayed works of art? Also, wasn't this payed for by the people of Chicago and thus now owned by the taxpayers? Shouldn't it be up to them to decide how to enforce/not enforce the copyright? Essentially, this is like Ford telling people not to take pictures of their own cars because the designers (read: the company) still own the copyright to the design.

    Appalling.
    • by OverlordQ (264228) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:44PM (#11653840) Journal
      From TFA:

      Update: Brian McCartney sez, "Just a note, the piece was not publicly paid for, it was a gift from SBC Communcations.


      So no it wasn't 'payed' for by the people of Chicago it was paid for by SBC.
      • by CosmeticLobotamy (155360) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:51PM (#11653913)
        Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet. This means I can charge my brother for toast he makes in the crappy toaster I bought him for his wedding, right?
      • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:00PM (#11653982) Homepage Journal
        It's a gift. So what if it wasn't paid for by Chicagoans? It was a gift from SBC to them. So it's now the property of Chicago, of Chicagoans, of the public. BTW, anyone who thinks a gift from SBC to the City is really "free" wouldn't survive a Winter in Chicago - or a Summer, either.
        • by Peyna (14792) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:04PM (#11654457) Homepage
          If I buy a painting from an artist, I have not bought the copyright along with that painting. I cannot make copies of it and distribute it.

          The same goes for a sculpture purchased by a city.
      • by xstonedogx (814876) <xstonedogx@gmail.com> on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:15PM (#11654093)
        Way to quote only the part of the article that supports your argument. Here's the rest of the blurb:

        Brian McCartney sez, "Just a note, the piece was not publicly paid for, it was a gift from SBC Communcations. Not that it matters, it's still totally bogus." Too right -- the public are still paying for this, not just in upkeep, but in the tax-break to SBC, in the maintenance of the object, in the policing to stop photogs, and most of all in the cost to the public nature of its space that comes from having an unphotographable object splatted right in the middle of an otherwise very nice park.

        And, as another poster pointed out, regardless of who paid for it and how, it's now owned by the public.

        Not only that, but you apparently didn't bother to read the article linked to by the source you quoted.

        Here it is: http://www.millenniumpark.org/sbcplaza.htm [millenniumpark.org]

        From the article:
        The sculpture is made possible by a gift from the SBC Corporation.

        The article makes no mention of SBC paying for the actual sculpture. It makes reference to a "gift" which could have been the land (since it's called SBC Plaza) or a monetary donation which the city then used to pay for the sculpture.
        • White elephant (Score:5, Informative)

          by jc42 (318812) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:53PM (#11654359) Homepage Journal
          The traditional name for such a gift is "white elephant".

          The usual story explaining this is that occasionally very pale elephants are born, and in SE Asia, these have been traditionally considered a sacred beast. If you offended a king or prince or other powerful person, one way of getting back was to give you a "gift" of a white elephant. This obligated you to care for the elephant for the rest of your/its life. This could be somewhat of a financial burden, of course.

          Sounds like the people of Chicago have themselves such a gift. Especially if you can be sued and fined (or imprisoned?) for merely taking a picture of the gift at its very public location.

          This is probably also a good exhibit in any discussion of changing the copyright laws.

    • by Slak (40625) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:48PM (#11653881)
      I was married last year in Chicago (where I reside and pay substantial property and sales taxes), and tried to take some wedding pictures at the Chicago Park District's indoor conservatory. Security stopped my bride and me from being photographed. I was outraged! And Millenium Park is worse, since it was completely overbudget and YEARS late.

      But, what do you expect from a city that send bulldozers in the middle of the night to shut down an airport?

      Insane.
      • by bechthros (714240) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:35PM (#11654642) Homepage Journal
        What are these "bride" things of which you speak, and where can I download one?
      • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:49PM (#11654729)
        The irony of all this is that Chicago is beginning one of the largest buildouts of remote-controlled "security" cameras in the U.S., linked by almost a thousand miles of fiber trunk. They can take all the pictures they want of us, but we can't use our cameras in what is nominally a public park.
    • by sgant (178166) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:50PM (#11653902) Homepage Journal
      The Bean itself is voilating copyrights of the buildings that it reflects...the reflections themselves are "reproductions" of the buildings that are designed by artists and builders.

      I think the designers of the Prudential Building should charge the designers and the City of Chicago for the reproduction of their building without their permission.
    • by Renesis (646465) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:57PM (#11653954)

      This actually seems to be fairly common with new buildings and works of art in public spaces.

      I was working with some people on some new postcards and they asked me to check out the royalties on a couple of new structures in London they'd taken pictures of.

      They'd been burned when they sold postcards of the Louvre. The architect who had designed the Louvre Pyramid [about.com] had complained and they had to pay him about 0.10 in royalties per postcard sold.

      Obviously anything over a certain age is copyright-expired, so castles etc are fair game! ;)

    • How is taking a photo of a sculpture "reproducing" it anymore than taking a photo of an album is stealing the music?
      • A sculpture is a much more inherently visual medium as compared to an album; therefore, I suppose one could concieveably say making a copy of the visual representation at a given point of the object would be an infringement.

        However, as an architecture student, I feel that sculpture (*especially* this one) uses space as its primary medium rather than just the visual; you can, and infact the Bean demands you interact with it in three-dimentional space to fully understand and comprehend this thing. I'd coun

    • by brwski (622056) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:00PM (#11653985)

      This is simply what happens when (and these are not necessarily related):

      1. Everything becomes a commodity,
      2. Representations of things become somehow more valuable than the things themselves.
      The first issue expresses itself most clearly in societies where money is held to be both the highest value and the Most Powerful Thing: whoever contols it, and can get their hands on it, clearly has The Power. Thus people seek to control the flow of commodities (which now include ideas, representations, waveforms, etc.) so as to tap into the flow of power, i.e., money. The second issue...well, the second issue is troublesome in its own special way. It also has been dealt with by Baudrillard time and time again. Just check out some of his essays...they're certainly not the final word on the subject, but they cover far more ground that may sensibly be covered here. One might perhaps want to begin with some of the essays in The Transparency of Evil or in Screened Out.
    • OMFG, READ THE LAW! (Score:3, Informative)

      by mtrisk (770081)
      God damn. This is fucking appalling!

      UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 17, SECTION 106A, COPYRIGHT LAW ON WORKS OF VISUAL ARTS [cornell.edu]

      (c) Exceptions.
      (3)
      The rights described in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (a) shall not apply to any reproduction, depiction, portrayal, or other use of a work in, upon, or in any connection with any item described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of the definition of "work of visual art" in section 101, and any such reproduction, depiction, portrayal, or other use of a work is not a
      • by cpt kangarooski (3773) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:06PM (#11654030) Homepage
        No, that's 17 USC 106A. The appropriate section of the law is 106(1), which states that the copyright holder has the exclusive right to reproduce the work. 106 applies to all copyrighted works. 106A merely adds some additional rights with regards to works of visual art; it doesn't supplant 106.

        So yeah, if you take a photo of a copyrighted work, it will typically be infringing. There are some exceptions e.g. 107, 120, but no blanket exceptions that seem useful here.
        • by ivan256 (17499) * on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:26PM (#11654171)
          I'm sorry, but a photograph of a sculpture is not a reproduction of said sculpture. If people were out making photographs of some artist's photographs you'd have a point.

          Similarly, you can take photographs of jewlery, but if you take a wax mold and make your own reproductions - even if it's of a piece of jewelery you own - you are violating the artist's copyright. Even in that case though, jewelers get around the other jeweler's copyright my creating their own similar, but not copied, pieces with only subtle differences. Unless the original jeweler has a design patent on some of the unique elements of the design, this is perfectly legal.

          The issue here is that the city wants to make money selling postcards and nobody has sued their asses yet.
          • by Raul654 (453029) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:51PM (#11654346) Homepage
            "I'm sorry, but a photograph of a sculpture is not a reproduction of said sculpture. " - it's a transformative reproduction. There's enough creativity involved (choosing the angle etc) that if it were in the public domain, a picture if it would qualify for copyright; on the other hand, it's close enough to the original that it could be considered either a copy or a derivative work. These are the same issues that were litigated in the Bridegeman art Library v Corel case.
    • by VValdo (10446) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:05PM (#11654020)
      Try including a shot of the Hollywood Sign [hollywoodsign.org] in a motion picture. Turns out, it's is not just a city landmark, but a trademarked [microla.com] brand [mdientertainment.com] owned by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce [hollywoodchamber.net], which cannot be included in a distributed film without paying licensing [globalicons.com] fees.

      At least that's what I've read. It didn't show up in a quick trademark search for "hollywood sign" Has any other city landmark (Eiffel tower, etc.) been trademarked like this?

      W
    • " What happens to other publicly displayed works of art?"

      It depends on the artist.

      This is, in essence, what copyright is: the right to determine how your work is copied -- including, in the case of artwork, photographic images. It is entirely the artists' prerogative.

      "Essentially, this is like Ford telling people not to take pictures of their own cars because the designers (read: the company) still own the copyright to the design."

      You are 100% correct. That would be unworkable, so they don't d

      • I think it comes down to whether scultures and other visual artists have the same access to copyright law as do programmers, web designers, and other professions that are more Slashdot-friendly, or if it's a "some people are more equal than others" situation.

        You're reading too much into the backlash. It has nothing to do with how "friendly" sculpture is to Slashdot readers. All those "friendly" examples you give, think about replaceing "sculpture" with those types of works. Should programmers get a royalt

  • by vijayiyer (728590) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:41PM (#11653815)
    As far as I know, anything viewable from a public area may be photographed. If the artists want to enforce copyright, they should place their sculptures in an enclosed building.
  • by RLiegh (247921) * on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:42PM (#11653817) Homepage Journal
    people will be harassed and intimidated merely for taking photos of public landmarks! [nwsource.com]
    • by g00set (559637)
      Here is a first person write up of the incident.

      Humiliated, Angry, Ashamed, Brown [69.93.170.43]
  • by Staplerh (806722) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:42PM (#11653818) Homepage
    This is outrageous. The funding came from two sources: public and private. The article addresses both. First public:

    The city's $270 million is mostly coming from bonds backed by revenue from the underground parking garages, said Lisa Schrader, a spokeswoman in the city's budget office.

    Paid for by the citizenry of Chicago. Now, there was also the private source:

    In all, about $200 million of the funding came from private contributors whose names are sprinkled throughout the park -- Wrigley Square, Bank One Promenade, BP Pedestrian Bridge, McCormick Tribune Plaza, the Lurie Garden.

    Boom, they have their recognition and return on their investment.

    My point is that these works of art are being errected in a public place, paid for by public funds and through private sponsorship (that has recieved its due return - free advertising in the form of building nomenclature). It is absolutely absurd that the citizens would be charged money to take pictures in their own damn park! Because that's what it is, they all own it through their tax dollars. Therefore, they should be able to take their damn pictures for free. Otherwise, can the city of Chicago really be providing the best government to its citizens?
  • Stupider (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mark_MF-WN (678030) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:42PM (#11653819)
    The entire world is now stupider for having shared a planet with this foolishness.

    In a sense, this is a good thing, because it turns more people against the modern bastardization of copyright law. A few more incidents like this and America will be ready for serious reforms to copyright law.

  • by murderlegendre (776042) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:42PM (#11653821)
    Oh wait.. Chicago, the Windy City. Now I get it.
  • by g0hare (565322) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:43PM (#11653823)
    This country gets stupider with every second. If only Canada wasn't so bloody cold.
    • by ccmay (116316) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:01PM (#11653996)
      This country gets stupider with every second. If only Canada wasn't so bloody cold.

      The problem is actually worse in a lot of other countries. [8k.com]

      For example, in France, a professional photographer must pay 5,000 euros per day for a license to use a tripod when taking photographs of public buildings like the Palace of Versailles. If you can't prove that you are a professional photographer, you may not buy a tripod permit at any price.

      Looks like you're the stupid one, after all. But of course, lefty soreheads who belittle the USA are usually ignorant malcontents who don't realize how good they have it.

      -ccm

      • Yeah.

        Fuck those liberals who demand that America be the greatest country on earth. They should just sit down and learn to put up with mediocrity in all its forms.

        True patriots understand that loving America means lowering your expectations of it. If lefties actually appreciated the things that made America great, they wouldn't try to protect them from being destroyed.
  • Charging money (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nuclear305 (674185) * on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:45PM (#11653848)
    "Photographers taking pictures of the sculpture have been charged money by the city."

    That's about one step short of the RIAA charging me every time I hear a song in a public place...

    Somehow I wouldn't be surprised if the city is keeping that money for themselves rather than collecting that money for the artists that created these so-called copyrighted works.

    I must also wonder how long this will go unchallenged. I can't see this standing up in court if, for example, the land was paid for using tax dollars instead of private funding.
  • by product byproduct (628318) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:47PM (#11653871)
    Place your own work in front of the sculpture, and sue them because their mirror is replicating your copyrighted work.
  • Not unique to the US (Score:3, Interesting)

    by panurge (573432) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:52PM (#11653914)
    There was a case in France where a photographer make a postcard of a beach scene and the owner of a boat in the photograph sued because he had painted the boat and its number was visible, i.e. it was his copyrighted artwork. I believe the case proceeded to court, but I do not know the outcome.

    Having said that, at a personal level I get annoyed if my house or boat are photographed, especially as I know that there are pictures of them on photoblogs on the net, put there without my permission. If the taxpayer had paid for them, and put them in a public park, I really do not see I would have a case.

  • by SirChive (229195) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:52PM (#11653917)
    ...complete and absolute corporate control over a nation's legal framework.
  • by hellgate (85557) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:52PM (#11653919)
    BoingBoing recently ran a story [boingboing.net] about the Eiffel tower. Now, because the Eiffel tower was built in the 19th century, there's an extra twist: Only the tower at night (with its recently added lighting) is supposedly copyrighted.
  • by murderlegendre (776042) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @04:55PM (#11653947)
    I for one welcome our fucking gigantic copyrighted chromium-bean wielding overlords.
  • by EEBaum (520514) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:01PM (#11653988) Homepage
    We need a new feature on Slashdot. For each news story, there should be a "scream in horror, pain, and disgust" button. This way, whenever a story is reported where otherwise well-thinking people do something that makes no logical sense whatsoever, you can simply press the button to register your "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGH."

    Each thread would have a scream counter, and perhaps also rate them by severity/incoherence. Perhaps a high-bandwidth version could be introduced in which posters can record their screams, and visitors can listen to all of them together, a la "millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced."

    I bring this up because there is an increasing number of stories, like this one, where I think a good scream is necessary, but can't be made into a coherent thread.
  • by mark-t (151149) <markt@nOSPam.lynx.bc.ca> on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:01PM (#11653991) Journal
    To _GET_ people to take pictures of it, thinking they are snubbing the system, then publishing those pictures resulting in free publicity for the artists creation.
  • Publicity Stunt (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bigtallmofo (695287) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:04PM (#11654007)
    This was an extremely effective publicity stunt. Since I'm a contrarian that doesn't like to fall for such things, that's all I have to say on it.

    Take that, City of Chicago!
  • by mcleodnine (141832) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:05PM (#11654019)

    IANAL (obviously, otherwise I wouldn't we wanking on /.) but is taking a picture of "the bean" a copyright violation or is it just selling/showing images of it put you on the wrong side of the law?

    I had a look at the galleries in the links and I'd wager the Number One question asked by tourists is;

    Does my ass look big in this statue?
    • by Peyna (14792) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:44PM (#11654299) Homepage
      17 USC 106 (Copyright holder exclusive rights)

      Subject to sections 107 through 122, the owner of copyright under this title has the exclusive rights to do and to authorize any of the following:
      (1) to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;
      (2) to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;
      (3) to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;
      (4) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly;
      (5) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly; and
      (6) in the case of sound recordings, to perform the copyrighted work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:43PM (#11654297) Homepage
    No, that's not a typo.

    Wee the people.

    Let that sink in. I'm getting pretty sick of it.
  • Ha HA! (Score:4, Funny)

    by JohnsonWax (195390) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:49PM (#11654335)
    I'll be having the last laugh on this one!

    3 years ago I patented a method for generating photographer revenue by erecting large amorphous reflective works of art in public places. I figured sooner or later someone would violate it.

    Now if only my related patent for generating contractor revenue through the temporary construction of a series of orange fabric covered archways in a public park would be violated...
  • Bullshit (Score:3, Insightful)

    by HermanAB (661181) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:50PM (#11654340)
    If anyone would bother to go to court, the city's claims will be thrown out. Photographing statues is allowed under copyright law. The photographer is NOT copying the statue. A photo is not, never has been and never will be a statue. Taking a photo of it is fair use.
  • Chicagoans (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Lord_Dweomer (648696) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:53PM (#11654370) Homepage
    Having spent the greater portion of my life growing up in Chicago, I have to say I am beyond outraged. This takes something that could be a great boon for the city in terms of global recognition, and turns it into what will inevitably be a class action lawsuit against the city of Chicago by Chicagoans for something so ridiculous that it would have gotten a Florida tag instead of an Asinine tag on Fark.

  • by Hack Jandy (781503) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @05:58PM (#11654409) Homepage
    As a Chicago resident I would be *real* hesistent to use the Reader as the one and only source of information. Not that it matters since every "article" (ahem.. blog) took this out of proportion anyway.

    Ready? Here we go. Step 1, read article not posted in /. post:
    Page 1 [interrupt-media.com], Page 2 [interrupt-media.com], Page 3 [interrupt-media.com].

    Step 2, knee jerk reaction. I am really hoping the part about bribing the police/security was something the author added for editorial flare. Now let's look at the actual permit, shall we?
    Permit [chicagoparkdistrict.com]

    The first fact the author got wrong is that this permit applies outside the Chicago Park district. It doesn't, so bring the knee back a little bit.

    I also don't see the BS about "journalism" anywhere on here. In fact, this permit only seems to apply to anyone who wants to *sell* the photographs. While I don't agree with it, the fact that Chicago only wants to prohibit people from selling pictures of their parks makes a little more sense to me.

    I am a little upset here for some of the bad journalism. Not only did the Reader get the facts wrong, but the blogs continued to propagate these incorrect facts.
    Let me reiterate: the fee of $325 is only for people who intend to take commercial photographs of Chicago Parks, and it mentions nothing about a.) non-park places in Chicago or b.) journalists using the pictures for content.

    The "article" is wrong, the blogs are wrong and the quotes seem plain out of context given the facts.
  • In New York City, about a decade ago, an architect was trying to charge people for taking pictures of his building. The court overturned his case, saying that it was (pretty much by definition) a public work. Not sure where to dig this up, but I read about it in the NY Times; I'm sure their dead-tree index might be helpful.
  • by rhu6ar6 (722859) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:43PM (#11654690)
    I didn't see this list mentioned yet, the Picture Archive Council of America has a list of things you can't photograph [stockindustry.org].
  • by rk (6314) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:51PM (#11654748) Journal

    I am now a work of art. No one may now take my picture in public without my express written permission.

    Continued usage of the Krebs cycle constitutes acceptance of these terms.

  • by Fantastic Lad (198284) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @06:57PM (#11654804)
    I had a walkie-talkie, and a phone and I sat in a booth and told people where the washroom and movie theaters were. Yes, that guy. Yes, it sucked.

    Anyway, the reason I bring this up is this; there was a mall policy; No Cameras! If anybody was seen taking pictures, mall security would swoop down on them and prevent them. Nobody ever explained why this policy was in place, and at the time, (I was young and still learning how the world worked), I honestly didn't care. Furthermore, I got this weird thrill when I caught somebody and had the opportunity to call it in on the com-system like a three alarm fire. Everybody got a buzz off it. "But why?" "Mall policy! Are you making trouble?"

    I'm not even sure if anybody knew the reasons for this weird law enforcement. All anybody knew was that recording images was bad, bad, bad.

    Now, today I could probably think up a couple of reasons why this policy existed, but so what? It doesn't mean a damned thing. Lawyers and politicians have demonstrated time and again that it is entirely possible to come up with rational-sounding reasons for all manner of insane activities and thus get people to accept and go along with them. It happens all the time, and I'm sure everybody can think up an example or twenty.

    The point I found curious is how eerily easy it is to jump whole-heartedly onto the enforcement bandwagon for no other reason than one happens to have been given a symbol of authority. A walkie-talkie, in this case.

    Soldiers will open fire on un-armed demonstrators, their own neighbors, and they will continue to do so because humans are wired in a creepy way. The trick is recognizing this face and taking steps to navigate accordingly.


    -FL

  • by SeaFox (739806) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @07:46PM (#11655112)
    This kinda reminds of an art show/sale that occurs every Fall in my hometown. One year I was there taking pictures to the happenings and there was a woman with these great Halloween-themed dolls (scarecrows and figures with Jack-O-Lantern heads and such. She saw me framing a shot of one of the figures and started shouting at me to get away. She said I was violating her copyrights on the designs if I photgraphed them.

    I pointed out she was displaying the work at a public art fair being held in a public park so I could photograph what I pleased. She continued to argue so I let it go and left her table area.

    The most ludicrious thing was she thought I was going to steal her designs by photographing her works -which I could have just bought from her, they were all for sale.
  • by metoc (224422) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @09:43PM (#11655804)
    The question is what is the legal status of "The Bean"?

    Judge for yourself.

    From http://www.publaw.com/photo.html/ [publaw.com]

    Photographs of Property

    Although property does not enjoy a right to privacy or publicity that there are other bodies of the law that might prohibit or restrict the unauthorized use of a photograph containing property. These bodies of law may include among others contract, trademark, unfair competition, copyright and trespass law.

    The guiding principle, that of course is muddled with exceptions, is that as long as a photograph of private property is taken while the photographer is on public property or on property that is open to the public then it is permissible to publish that photograph without permission from the owner of the property.

    However, there are exceptions where it may be necessary or advisable to obtain permission from the owner of the property. These exceptions may include among others, a photograph of (i) artwork displayed in a museum, gallery or other location, (ii) a well-recognized product, such as a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, where the manufacturer has been litigious with respect to commercial uses of photographs containing their product, (iii) a building where the building design is protected by a federal trademark registration - recently there was litigation involving a photograph of the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame, (iv) a "famous" pet such as Lassie, (v) interiors of private buildings and (vi) personal property, such as their clothing or jewelry, that could identify an individual.
  • Fair use? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Capt'n Hector (650760) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @10:09PM (#11656005)
    Although it's a bit amusing, could photographing a public piece of art, the copy of which is owned by the city be construed as fair use? After all, if I buy a copyrighted work, I am allowed to reproduce it in some manner for backup purposes. That's why ripping CDs is totally legal. Along the same line of thought, shouldn't individual members of the public be able to reproduce something that THEY themselves own for their own backup?
  • by DarkOx (621550) on Saturday February 12, 2005 @11:33PM (#11656527) Journal
    1. This is a pice of public art wether it was purchased with tax dollars or given it belongs to the public. People take pictures its part of how they enjoy a thing like this, get over it. People should have a right to "use" public art anyway they want so long as it does not prevent others from haveing access to it.

    2. A photo should not be considered a copy of a sculpture. A photo is a two demensional thing the sculpture has three, they are therefore not even remotely similar. Part of the artform of sculpting is determining how the viewer will inhabit its space, that cannot even be reproduced in a photo. A photo connot preseve a sculpture in anyway other then provokeing a human memory of it.

    3. A photograph is in most cases a distinct work of art in and of itself. One form of photograpic art is called "strait photography" it was particularly popular for awhile basicly its all subject subject subject point and shoot. One work of art can't resonably infringe on another.

    4. Please see Dadaism if you don't think that anything can be appropriated and made art. In this case DuChamp's "L.h.o.o.q." is particularly appropos. If this can be recognized as its own legitimate pice of art then ANY addition to the bean here include the reflection of the photographer or the act of composeing a photograph would make any such photo its own work of art.
  • SOunds to me like (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Cyberllama (113628) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @03:24AM (#11657606)
    Some sort of reverse psychology:

    I think they WANT people to take pictures of it.

    This could be the most succussful advertising campaign ever. Advertisers take note, the key to make sure EVERYONE sees your advertisement is to forbid them to see it.
  • Vandalism (Score:3, Funny)

    by jefu (53450) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:39PM (#11660252) Homepage Journal
    I know it would be considered vandalism to actually do it (and probably theft of intellectual property if the lawyers really got their two cents (mils?) worth in), but I think that this thing really needs a massive copyright notice indelibly etched into its surface.

Your computer account is overdrawn. Please see Big Brother.

Working...