(Wasn't sure whether here or General Chat was better...)
Just had some images of the London Eye rejected for copyright reasons, and some images of the Forth Road and Rail bridges accepted. Both are iconic public structures - I'm not really objecting, if there is a clear legal difference in the situation between the two, but am a little confused!
Colin, I'll let the approvers give you the definite answer, but some public places have copyrights on their images. For example, the light show on the Eiffel Tower is copyrighted, so you can use only images taken in the daytime. I think the Sydney Opera House also copyrights it's image. I had never heard of anything so bizarre until I entered the odd little world of photography.
Don't let the police see you photographing public buildings. They are likely to demand that you clear your camera (they have no right to do this, but they will).
Indeed! London Eye doesn't seem to have such a policy - there are plenty of images on Flickr, including in the London Eye official group (http://www.flickr.com/groups/594927@N24/) that are copyright the photographer and downloadable royalty free... Hence the question about the rejection.
They do have a filming and photography request form. That would indicate copyright issues.
I have been advised that the London Eye has changed its policy. Formerly they used to copyright their big wheel, but have since had a change of heart as they recognise that people's images are a useful source of free publicity for them.
As for being seen photographing public buildings: in London, Horseguards Parade and Buckingham Palace get photographed by tourists every day, with police looking on without concern. But if someone was seen photographing the licence plates of vehicles entering or leaving these areas then this would very probably lead to a somewhat different response from the police, needless to say!
Hope this helps although it is a shame ;-)
Thanks - and appreciate folk having a proper look to see why for specific sites... Hey ho!
@6 That's interesting. I was told a few months ago by another RGB Stock moderator that images of the Eye were now okay. Looks like the Eye organisation has had another change of heart! I'll remove my image from RGB Stock.
I was reflecting on this, partly as I also have some images of the Angel of the North on Tyneside I was thinking of submitting (statue by Antony Gormley). Couldn't find any specific information for the Angel, though was concerned that the only two images on, eg, iStockPhoto, were editorial only. Further browsing turned up this on WikiPedia:
(How) does this apply? I'm guessing the balance of risks in all this is "Sorry, no", but just asking!
The Wikipedia article goes on to say:
"Freedom of panorama, often abbreviated as FOP, is a provision in the copyright laws of various jurisdictions that permits taking photographs or video footage, or creating other images (such as paintings), of buildings and sometimes sculptures and other art which are permanently located in a public place, without infringing any copyright that may otherwise subsist in such works, and to publish such images."
As with all these sorts of things, the devil is in the detail. What is a "public place"? A place where you are charged an admission fee clearly isn't a public place, so that would seem to rule out the Eye, but the Angel of the North might be a different case. Who owns the land it is on?
And how about images of the Eye taken from very clearly off their property... The land the Angel is on is Council owned - webpages etc all end up back at the Council. Hey ho!
And another issue is - what is meant by "permanently located"? Nothing is permanent; entropy rules! For example, does 40 years count as "permanent"? If so, what happens on the 41st year?