Commons talk:Freedom of panorama/Archive 2

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2D works

In a few countries, 2D works are covered including plaques and notices permanently located in a public place. What countries? I can't find any references to the ones listed. Rocket000 (talk) 06:06, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Malaysia and Thailand might be two examples. It could be good to add a quick-reference table at the top of this page, simply stating OK/not OK for architectural, other 3D, and 2D works (we still need the details lower down the page, obviously). Pruneautalk 09:38, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Ok, thanks. Yeah, it's a good thing to know. Rocket000 (talk) 10:23, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Israel would be an example too. Of course it is a matter of interpretation of the law, so it might change in the future if someone appeals to a court of law, and the court of law has the authority to provide a new interpretation. Drork (talk) 04:13, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
In Israel not all 2D art. Only "applied art" is exempted, and that exemption is used on commons for Israeli coats of arms, which may be reasonable. But it should not be used for artistic works like maps, charts, photography, or paintings. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 06:41, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Pieter Kuiper, please tell me what is the original Hebrew term for "applied art", I would like to look it up in the original phrasing. In addition, please tell me when you consulted an Israeli lawyer about the matter. Drork (talk) 07:22, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
I am astonished and flabbergasted that Drork needs my help to his way in the Hebrew law, but here is the phrasing of the paragraph about FOP:
:הריצי לש ,המוד יתוזח רואית וא טוטרש ,רויצ ,םוליצ לש ךרדב הקתעה וא ,רודיש

תמקוממ הריציה םא םירתומ ,תישומיש תונמא תריצי וא לוסיפ תריצי ,תילכירדא ירוביצ םוקמב תועיבקב Sorry, that gets garbled in copying from Acrobat.

/Pieter Kuiper (talk) 07:48, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Well, had you known to read Hebrew, you could have typed it rather than copy and paste it. Anyway, I have a copy of the original phrasing, and I read it carefully. I have already contacted a local lawyer, just to be on the safe side, and his answer will probably reach my email in a few days, but you can trust me that I don't make things up. I know what is right and what is wrong in Israel, and if an error occurred or an update of the local law, I will inform/update this community. For the time being, don't try to act as an Israeli lawyer, and give this issue a rest. Drork (talk) 08:02, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
I do not have a Hebrew keybord here, but the Hebrew term for "works of applied art" is
יצירת אמנות שימושית (copying the letters one by one). /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 08:15, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
"A useful creation of art" this term can be interpreted im many ways, "applied art" is a possible translation, but not the only one. As I said, unless otherwise decided the common practice prevails. I will be informed in a few days about new rulings if they exist at all. In the meantime, no reason to think the status quo in Israel has changed. Drork (talk) 14:08, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

The D-A-CH countries, i.e. Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, cover two-dimensional works including murals under freedom of panorama, see the corresponding article at de-wp. --AFBorchert (talk) 07:44, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

That article on dewp is not acurate with regard to the Netherlands, which has FOP for some 2D (drawings, paintings), but not for maps, and oddly not for photography. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 08:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
in Israel 2D is applies to "useful art" - it has been stated by scholar that this includes pictures and drowings (i.e. 2 D work in public places), and the Court have rulled that "useful art" applies also to commercials (thus FOP applies to commercials if they are permenantly hung in a public place). Deror avi (talk) 15:53, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Mexico and no derivatives?

I noticed that the text of the relevant Mexican law says "invariably citing the source and without altering the work." Doesn't this amount to a no-derivatives restriction? We don't usually permit no-derivatives licenses at Commons. Dcoetzee (talk) 21:38, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

No, we think that is more related to moral rights. See #Mexico above, and the German law which has a similar clause. Carl Lindberg (talk) 23:40, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with the idea of hosting images that are subject to such restrictive moral rights, though. Plenty of legitimate creative uses may be viewed as "defacement." Are we accepting these restrictions merely because moral rights are perpetual and so unavoidable in practice? Dcoetzee (talk) 23:51, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Yes, basically. They are not copyright restrictions so there is no issue of compatibility of derived works with the GFDL or anything like that; see Commons:Non-copyright restrictions. The images can't practicably be any "more free" than they are. The Berne Convention itself bars usage of works which impugn the reputation of the original author; moral rights are really not avoidable (though they are not perpetual in all countries). Carl Lindberg (talk) 20:03, 17 May 2009 (UTC)

Feedback on deletion

I'd appreciate it if I could get some of you to take a look at Commons:Deletion requests/File:Rodina mat zovet.jpg to ensure that my interpretation of Russian FoP is correct here. If this file is kept, it may result in a policy change to this page. Dcoetzee (talk) 21:51, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

A question about FoP and derivative works

This is somewhat speculative, but say that someone creates a sculpture based closely on a modern art painting, and installs it in a public place. Clearly the sculptor cannot restrict photographs of the work; however, can the original painter do so? If so, does this deserve to be called out in this policy or is the case too improbable to consider? Dcoetzee (talk) 01:36, 20 May 2009 (UTC)

Check COM:DM Esby (talk) 03:38, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm referring to the case where the sculpture is a clear and obvious derivative work of the original painting and de minimis is not applicable. Dcoetzee (talk) 04:34, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
The painter would have had the right to prevent the making/display of the sculpture, so they would have also needed to have given their consent. Pretty hard to figure a scenario where this would be an issue. Courts can always surprise, but... I can't see a reason to worry about anything like this right now. Only if the photo is somehow a derivative of the original painting but *not* a derivative of the sculpture... Carl Lindberg (talk) 04:46, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Were you thinking of something like en:Jeff_Koons#Copyright_litigation? Lupo 08:27, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Not really - I'm thinking of a case where the sculptor had permission to use the original work, but those rights are not subsequently conferred upon the photographer. One can argue that the painter knew the nature of the work being created, but even so they may still wish to enforce reproduction rights. Dcoetzee (talk) 08:41, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
It's a matter of the contract between the painter and the sculptor, I'd say. If that contract included the permission to install the sculpture permanently in a public place (and it must have, because your assumption is that the sculptor had the permission), this means the painter waived any reproduction rights he might otherwise perhaps have had over the sculpture. Otherwise, he should not have agreed to that contract. Hence FOP photos would need to be concerned only with the sculpture, not with the painting. IANAL, though. Lupo 08:48, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Quite a complex case. I'd agree with Lupo here, it's a matter of agreement between the painter and the sculptor. The same goes for the case where the sculptor wants to photograph the painted work, he is not the only author, and is supposed to seek consent of the other part. If the painting was allowed or commanded, it is fairly possible that the agreement can be met, but if the painting was done without the sculptor agreement, chances are that there won't be any working solution available... Esby (talk) 08:58, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
The Japanese lawmaker has provided his own answer to this question, by forbidding the owner of an artistic work to display it outside without the artist's consent : see Article 45 of Japanese law. Teofilo (talk) 12:54, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Canada, theme park rides and characters

I did a few shots at Canadian theme park Canada's Wonderland, in the children's area. Beyond the general signage that could be considered de minimis, the photos include rides with sculptures of Nickelodeon or Hanna-Barbera characters, and in some cases costumed character versions of characters from those two companies. Are those things allowed under Freedom of Panorama? -- Nick Moreau (talk) 17:52, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes, 3D stuff is covered by Canadian FOP (but not 2D). The 2D stuff may be de minimis or PD-ineligible or something, depending.  — Mike.lifeguard 14:17, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

What decides the panorama rules? The country where the sculpture was created or the country where it is displayed?

If a sculpture is permanently displayed in Norway but had been created by a British artist in the UK, which law counts? The Norwegian or the British? Norway doesn't have a freedom of panorama, but the UK does. 13:13, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

I'm pretty sure we use where it is displayed. Carl Lindberg (talk) 13:28, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
U should check what the norwegian law says - because according to UK law - it is according to where it is (permenantly) displayed. If it is the same in Norway - that the laws do not contradict (no conflict of laws). Deror avi (talk) 17:06, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks guys, I think that the Norwegian lack of freedom of panorama might be the one that counts here, if UK law says that the law concerning the statue is the law of the country where it is permanently displayed. The Norwegian law says nothing about this whole question. 07:24, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Former Soviet Union

In this sections links are outdated. I updated for Belarus. annot find for Russia. Whoever has time ad interest, please revive. Altenmann (talk) 03:56, 7 July 2009 (UTC)


I have just updated COM:FOP#Tunisia. Please proof-read. It seems that archeological remains or old mosques are protected, and only modern statues in the streets (not in museums) or modern buildings are OK. This sounds a bit strange, though. Teofilo (talk) 21:22, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Er, if the pictured object is out of copyright, a photo would not be a derivative work. We have typically ignored the "antiquities" type laws, when it comes to deletion on Commons, as that is local to one country only. It is up to the individual to upload them or not, and they would take responsibility for that stuff. Copyright is not supposed to be perpetual; I'm not sure any Berne country would really recognize that. It is good to mention it though, since people should be aware of it. We similarly ignore the perpetual British copyrights on the King James Bible, as well, for example, I'm pretty sure. Also, the tax on blank tapes/CDs/DVDs is quite common, usually to give music labels some of the income associated with sales of that media since they are often used to make mix tapes/etc. for self or friends (and not-so-fair-use straight copies for others). I don't see what applicability it has for freedom of panorama. Otherwise, good to note a decent liberalization... public street scenes are fine to photograph. Carl Lindberg (talk) 21:53, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for showing interest on this. As I made a word-for-word translation, including the "notwithstanding article 37" I thought I had to say a few words about it, so that it becomes clear that it concerns noone except manufacturers. This tax is not a problem for users (well, cameras or blank CDs will be a little more expensive to buy in Tunisia, but that is not our concern on a US-based website). You are entirely right on the fact that we would have reasons to disregard the concerns on archaeological remains here on commons and ways to defend us against that from non-Tunisia Berne countries. But before making such counter-strategies, I would like to know if I have not made a more straightforward translation mistake or misinterpretation of that law. If Tunisia does have a Greek-fashion/Italian fashion/Egyptian fashion archaeological work protection it is consistent, but if it hasn't, perhaps it means that I made a big translation mistake, or a severe misunderstanding of what this lawmaker means. Teofilo (talk) 22:12, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
"Notwithstanding" means "despite" -- i.e. the freedom of panorama stuff overrides whatever article 37 provisions there are in relevant cases. But, my French is bad enough that Google does a better job. Is there an English translation out there? Carl Lindberg (talk) 22:48, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
So I was making a mistake. They mean the opposite : freedom of panorama is not an excuse for not paying the tax on cameras : provided article 37 is complied with, reproduction of freedom of panorama items is lawful. Teofilo (talk) 23:53, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
There is a list of English translations of the official gazette of the Republic of Tunisia on the government website but the last English translation they give seems to be that of 1 may 2009, while the one we need is that from 30 June. Teofilo (talk) 00:11, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
OK. It is hard to understand in exactly what situation both would apply... one would presume the tax happens on a purchase on a camera or film or SD card, not which pictures you take or what happens to the photos later. But that is the fun with this stuff, always a new wrinkle :-/ Carl Lindberg (talk) 00:19, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Here is how I understand the new situation. There is a freedom of panorama for contemporary artworks visible in the public space (mainly streets). All other artworks remains submitted to copyright... until 50 years after the author's death (patrimoine artistique légué par les générations antérieures). So a mosque built in the 16th century or a Phoenician mask should not be submitted to copyright (based on article 18), even if the mask is exposed in a museum (only the author's rights are protected).
For the article 10, it says the freedom of panorama is OK if the article 37 is respected (sous réserve de), i.e. if the manufacturers of cameras and other materials pay the tax when they import material in Tunisia, thus compensating the loss of money resulted by the freedom of panorama. Here the photographers are not at all concerned by this condition. Moumou82 (talk) 16:44, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

Hello Moumou82,
I see that we agree on the meaning of "sous réserves". But I think "à l’exception des galeries d’art, musées ou tout patrimoine artistique légué par les générations antérieures" leaves no room for treating separately art galleries, museums and artistic heritage from past generations. These 3 things are either allowed together or forbidden together. Do you think publishing a picture of a modern sculpture in a museum is allowed or forbidden ? If you think it is forbidden, then publishing pictures of artistic heritage from past generations must be forbidden too, because the quoted sentence binds the mentioned 3 things together. Teofilo (talk) 08:48, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
I understand your point of view. I think this point applies until it is in contradiction with article 18. I can't see how two articles of the same law could contradict themselves in such a way. Would old stones from Roman or Carthaginian periods, including in open-sky sites, be protected? and who would have the rights then? Moumou82 (talk) 19:05, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

Here is the original arabic text :

العربية: ز ـ استنساخ أو نقل مصنف من الهندسة المعمارية أو الفنون الجملية أو مصنف من الفنون التطبيقية أو مصنف تصويري، إذا كان المصنف موجودا على الدوام في مكان عمومي، باستثناء أروقة الفن والمتاحف والأثار الفنية الموروثة عن الأجيال السابقة.

Their English translation is not yet ready (their last translation is now Official Gazette N°48 of 16 June 2009, but we need N°52 of 30 June 2009) Teofilo (talk) 13:28, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

Their English translation is up. There are some weird wordings in there, so I'm not sure it is the best translation... but, article 10(g) says that among the permissible uses without the author's permission is: the reproduction or communication of a work of architecture or fine arts, or of a work of the applied arts or a photographic work, when it is located permanently in a public place, except for the museums, art galleries or any artistic heritage bequeathed by the former generations. I'm not sure they define "public place" anywhere, but it would seem to include most indoor public places with the exception of museums and the like. I don't see how they could use copyright to protect photos of ancient objects, unless the photo contains parts of a copyrighted building or something, but in general it sounds like it doesn't apply to photos in places where the entire objective is to display works of art. But street signs, posters, etc. all look to be fair game. And yes, article 10 (which lists a bunch of limitations to copyright) is still subject to article 37 (the tax on media), but I don't see how that really applies to this particular exception (rather it is probably targeted at other parts of article 10). Carl Lindberg (talk) 02:36, 22 September 2009 (UTC)


I think I must be missing something given that File:Hallgrímskirkja.jpeg is a former featured picture and so I've brought this query here rather than going straight for a deletion. According to COM:FOP#Iceland, images of buildings are copyrighted and cannot be used for non-commercially without remuneration. This is backed up by Article 16 of the Icelandic Copyright Act[1]. In Iceland the copyright doesn't expire until 70 years after after the end of the year of death (see Article 43 and the warning at the top of Category:Buildings in Iceland). Given that the architect of Hallgrímskirkja, Guðjón Samúelsson, didn't die until 1950, then images cannot be used commercially without his estate receiving remuneration until 1 January 2021 at the earliest. There are a number of images of Guðjón's buildings in commons, should File:Hallgrímskirkja.jpeg and the others be nominated for deletion? --JD554 (talk) 12:27, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

You're right. Note that the picture was a featured picture here at the Commons from 2005-02-05 to 2007-06-08. The church shown was in the public domain from 2001-01-01 to 2006, when the law from 15 February 2006, which changed the copyright terms, entered in force. So, the image was once fine, but isn't so any longer. Lupo 13:22, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I see. So has the law changed them term of copyright retrospectively. Does the copyright of Guðjón's buildings now extend to 2021 rather than the fifty years it was previously, or are they always in the Public Domain? --JD554 (talk) 14:01, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
According to User:Haukurth, the 2006 changes in the Icelandic copyright law restored previously expired copyrights. Thus the church would be copyrighted now until 2020-12-31. I don't know what Icelandic law says about (ongoing) unlicensed uses based on the previous PD status of now re-copyrighted items. (This image is one of the rare cases where we (and the uploader) would indeed be "reliance parties", as the Americans call it. The EU calls for the protection of "acquired rights of third parties" in article 10(3) of EU directive 93/98/EEC, upon which the Icelandic changes were modelled, AFAIK.) Lupo 07:57, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
It's going to be a shame to lose those images, particularly File:Hallgrímskirkja.jpeg :( --JD554 (talk) 08:40, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
Article 63 seems to say that these pre-existing images should be OK: The provisions of the first paragraph [stating the new law applies to old works] shall not, however, apply to measures which have already been taken or rights acquired by third parties on the basis of prior Acts. The continuing distribution to the public or public exhibition of copies of works or of performances is permitted if the making of these copies was unrestricted at the time their distribution or exhibition took place, without prejudice, however, to the provisions of Article 24 prohibiting the rental or loan of works.' Article 24's bit about rentals does not apply to works of architecture or sculpture, either. Carl Lindberg (talk) 17:16, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

Oof! --JD554 (talk) 11:08, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

I think there may be some confusion here - the extension of copyright from 50 pma to 70 pma didn't happen in 2006 - it happened in 1996. What happened in 2006 was extension of neighboring rights for photographs (from 25 years to 50 years). Haukurth (talk) 22:43, 25 July 2009 (UTC)

Crap. In that case, neither we nor the uploader are "reliance parties". Lupo 07:33, 27 July 2009 (UTC)


There is an Undeletion request discussion which hinges on the statement that in Belgium photos of buildings are OK, but not of sculpture. MichaelMaggs for one feels the law includes buildings among the 'works' that cannot be the sole subject of a photograph, contrary to Commons:Freedom of Panorama#Belgium. Can someone clarify this point? +sj + 14:36, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

I removed the following paragraph :
Belgium is, however, quite different. The law there allows free photography of buildings, but requires acquiring permission to publish any photograph of a sculpture that is the central motif of the photograph
If anyone can provide references to substantiate it, it could be added again, but I have strong doubts about it. Teofilo (talk) 11:28, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
There has been a discussion on the Dutch Wikipedia and the French Wikipedia. To summarise/quote: If the Belgium copyright law doesn't clearly say that there's a freedom of panorama, as this seems to be clearly stated for Germany then that's how things are. However, Wikimedia or Wikimedia Belgium could try to challenge or sign a deal with the SABAM or even with the Belgium gouvernement (just like Wikimedia Commons did with the Bundesarchiv in Germany) to release pictures under a GFDL-compatible licence. Wouter (talk) 17:35, 24 July 2009 (UTC)


If noone objects, I will change soon change COM:FOP#Vietnam into "not OK" for the following reasons :

The mentioned law article says that the use of the artwork is allowed only for "introduction purpose", which I understand as meaning "introducing the artwork to readers", and conversely forbids all other sorts of uses.

This would be OK for using the pictures on an encyclopedia, or news articles, but this is not free enough for Commons. For commons other types of uses, like the possibility to sell postcards must me allowed.

We have already decided that the pictures taken under the Japanese Freedom of Panorama law were not "free enough" for Commons. Similarly we must take the same decision for Vietnam.

The definition of "free enough" is based on (a definition used in ) :

Freedomdefined : These freedoms should be available to anyone, anywhere, anytime. They should not be restricted by the context in which the work is used.

The requirement to use the work for "introduction" is a context restriction. So we must rule that the Vietnamese FOP pictures are not free enough.

Freedomdefined : The licensee must be allowed to make any use, private or public, of the work

The "introduction purpose" required by the Vietnamese law is not the same as allowing "any use".

Teofilo (talk) 19:35, 24 July 2009 (UTC)

Depends on how you parse it. The person who put in that section thought that the "introduction purposes" phrase related to the display itself, not the use of such pictures. It does not seem to be the best translation, to be honest. I'm not sure what to make of it. Carl Lindberg (talk) 05:59, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
The WIPO translation of article 25-h reads :
h- Photographing or televising of plastic art, architectural, photographic, applied-art works displayed at public places for purpose of presenting images of such works;
It seems to me more natural to parse the words the same way as in article 25-g, which reads (WIPO translation) :
g- Audiovisual recording of performances for purpose of reporting current events or for teaching purpose;
Teofilo (talk) 08:15, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Yours is a perfectly reasonable way of interpreting it too, and probably more accurate. Except that "introduction purposes" doesn't mean much to me -- I can't figure out what that is supposed to convey; it may have been a hard concept to translate. A million arguments on that one too. Going by the WIPO text, which seems more coherent, it would seem that freedom of panorama in Vietnam is fine. We should probably put that text into the Vietnam section, and link to that instead. Carl Lindberg (talk) 18:11, 25 July 2009 (UTC)
Letting aside the exact meaning of the words after "for purpose", the sheer use of "for purpose of something" introduces a context restriction. Therefore freedom of panorama is not fine in Vietnam. Teofilo (talk) 17:48, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
And I'll disagree on that, in this case. It may be that certain specific types of photographs are not allowed, but in general photographs which show the work sound like they should be fine. That may be this translation's way of saying "cannot be used for the same purpose as the original", i.e. a closeup photograph which is in effect a copy of an applied-art 2D work would not be OK, but a photo which simply depicts it in its public context is fine. Carl Lindberg (talk) 05:12, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
So photographying a Mickey Mouse T-shirt and selling the photograph as postcard, without approval of the Disney company is allowed in Vietnam ? Teofilo (talk) 07:20, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
Sounds like it to me. That should be fine in the U.S. too. You can't use the photo in ways which would imply a relationship with Disney (i.e. violate the trademark), but that is not a copyright issue. Carl Lindberg (talk) 13:44, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Quote :

By taking a picture with a copyrighted cartoon character on a t-shirt as its main subject, for example, the photographer creates a new, copyrighted work (the photograph), but the rights of the cartoon character's creator still affect the resulting photograph. Such a photograph could not be published without the consent of both copyright holders: the photographer and the cartoonist.

Source : COM:DW. Mickey Mouse was created in 1928. This is later than 31 december 1922, so {{PD-US}} doesn't apply. Teofilo (talk) 18:02, 22 August 2009 (UTC)

If you are talking about a closeup of a t-shirt where the surrounding context isn't included, then sure, that is different. That is more of a copy. Carl Lindberg (talk) 03:02, 22 September 2009 (UTC)
  • T-shirts are disingenous. You will rarely if ever see a t-shirt where FOP applies. A billboard is a more apt example. -Nard the Bard 00:45, 8 October 2009 (UTC)

I agree with Teofilo here; it doesn't seem to me like Article 25.1.h is a clause of FOP. In fact, Article 25 as a whole sounds more like an enumeration of fair-use cases (it starts with case of use of published works or the following forms of use of published works, which means that these exceptions are only valid for some specific purposes). –Tryphon 19:22, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

I'm also a bit concerned about Article 25.3: Any use of works as stipulated in paragraph 1 of this Article is not applicable to architectural, fine art works or computer programs. Which seems to partly contradict Article 25.1.h. –Tryphon 19:26, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
FOP provisions usually come in a list of "exceptions to copyright" like this -- these are uses which do not require permission nor payment (i.e. uses to which copyright protections do not extend). It's more than "fair use", as there does not appear to be any limitation to the use of such photographs -- but that could rest on the interpretation of that slightly odd wording. Article 25.3 is strange, yes, but I would think that would apply to elements of 25.1 which do not explicitly override it like 25.1.h plainly does. Carl Lindberg (talk) 05:47, 8 October 2009 (UTC)
It's usually a list of cases where derivative works are okay. The important distinction here, is that it lists uses for which no permission nor payment are required (i.e. not all uses are okay, as this mysterious for introduction purposes indicates).
And to add to the confusion, Article 25.1.h does not explicitly mention architectural works in this translation (the WIPO tranlation does though).
In the meantime, we should add the requirements of Article 25.2 to COM:FOP#Vietnam, namely: they [the persons who use the works] must provide information about the name of the authors and origins of works.. (I will add it later today if no one objects). –Tryphon 07:36, 8 October 2009 (UTC)
25.1.h is talking about a type of derivative work -- "no permission and no payment" basically means that the copyright of the underlying work does not apply to them. That other translation is weird (and does say "Non-official translation" at the top); the WIPO one seems to be much better and is definitely more official (those are submitted by the governments to WIPO). It does include the phrase "for purpose of presenting images of such works" (rather than the odd "introduction purposes"), which is the one debatable thing -- are there uses of the photographs which are bad, or does the photograph inherently "present the image of the work" and is thus always OK? Maybe certain types of photographs are not OK (overly artistic photos using the form of the underlying object but not really depicting it), or something. 25.2 is basically moral rights; those still apply (and almost always do with FOP cases). But, good to add. Carl Lindberg (talk) 12:47, 8 October 2009 (UTC)

North Korea

I've just added a section on North Korea. Seems that there is a FOP there, but this is hardly my speciality, so I would appreciate pointers if I've made a mistake. J Milburn (talk) 22:29, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

Using FoP to magically turn copyrighted logos free

Does Freedom of panorama mean that if I am in a country with applicable FoP I could take a photograph of a (publicly and permanently placed) copyrighted logo of some company and then release this photo under a free license. If so could I then use this free photo to create a derivative work where I clean up the logo (possibly vectorise it) until it's indistinguishable from a the logo abvailable on, say, their homepage and then release my image under a free license. Would this then be a magic way of turning copyrighted logos free?. / Lokal_Profil 12:25, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

Obviously trademark laws would still apply but for this discussion the only relevant thing would be copyright. /Lokal_Profil 12:26, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
If the final image is just the logo, it has lost all the expression from the photo itself, and would be a direct derivative work (or, more likely, copy) of the logo. For FoP, I would think the photo should still need to depict the logo in its public context to be acceptable. Many FoP provisions have an explicit, small exception of "cannot be used for the same purpose as the depicted work", which would be the case here. Carl Lindberg (talk) 14:42, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
So FoP photos would then contain limitations on derivative works. E.g. something like "you can't crop so that the main part of the image is a copyrighted 2-D work"? /Lokal_Profil 15:03, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
COM:FOP#Sweden has no restrictions. The law text allows making images of artistic works that are permanently placed outdoors. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 15:08, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Technically, they would not be derivative works of the photo -- they would be direct derivative works (or straight copies) of the original logo itself. The means of making the derivative work is usually irrelevant, I'm pretty sure. Carl Lindberg (talk) 15:38, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
I think the answer is essentially yes - however, it's necessary to have enough context to prove you actually are taking a picture of an artifact in a public location. This is also complicated by other issues - for many chain retail outlets, the place where the store is situated is not the country of origin of the logo, and so the local FoP is not the only law under consideration. Dcoetzee (talk) 19:51, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
There is no need for proving context - FOP applies to making a drawing or a painting of a statue. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 19:59, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Clarification. Is that yes your can magically make them free. Or yes there are limitations on derivative works? If we take a specific example. Say a photograph of a Burger King sign (copyright of logo is the USA, say) and one of an Apoteket sign (copyright of logo is Sweden), both signs placed in Sweden (which has FoP with no relevant restrictions), and vectorised derivatives of the photos just containing the logos. Which would be free and in which country would they be so./Lokal_Profil 20:02, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
What could Disney do if one made a drawing of Mickey Mouse statue? /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 20:04, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm guessing that the Burger King sign would be reusable in Sweden but not the United States, since the US is its country of origin and the one in Sweden is just a copy. I remain uncertain about the Apoteket sign. Dcoetzee (talk) 20:13, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

Road signs

Hello, does Freedom of panorama apply to road signs? I was about to upload a picture of one of the signs in ByWard Market but I don't know if this is allowed under the law. Thank you. LovesMacs (talk) 13:42, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Some information is available at Commons:Image_casebook#Road_signs. Teofilo (talk) 18:06, 22 August 2009 (UTC)
Is there anything that Commons:Freedom_of_panorama#Canada doesn't answer? Why should there be something special for road signs? -- H005 (talk) 20:18, 23 August 2009 (UTC)
I have carefully reread the explanation of Freedom of panorama, and I think road signs are often not allowed because they are two-dimensional designs. I think my photo wouldn't be allowed on Commons for that reason. LovesMacs (talk) 18:29, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Road signs showing very simple designs (text only, or geometric shapes with text) are public domain by virtue of being too simple to copyright. 99% of road signs should fall into this category. -Nard the Bard 03:02, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

Retroactivity of freedom of panorama in Germany for sculptures removed before 1965 ?

According to de:Gesetz über Urheberrecht und verwandte Schutzrechte, the German copyright law was enacted in 1965.

What does the German case law or legal doctrine say about pictures like File:Bundesarchiv Bild 183-H27141, Berlin, Neue Reichskanzlei, Statue "Partei".jpg, showing a sculpture already removed in 1965 ("After the war, the remains of the Chancellery were demolished by orders of the Soviet occupation forces" : en:Reich Chancellery ; today the sculpture is not located in Berlin but in Breker-Museum Nörvenich [between Cologne and Aix-la-Chapelle] ; Die Skulptur stand zusammen mit der Skulptur "Die Wehrmacht" bis 1945 im Hof der Neuen Reichskanzlei in Berlin und befindet sich heute im Besitz des Breker-Museums : File:ArnoBrekerDiePartei.jpg)?

Teofilo (talk) 09:40, 24 August 2009 (UTC)

Urheberrechtskommentar Schricker3, S. 1159/1160 (Hervorhebungen dort): Eine der Vorschrift des § 59 UrhG ähnliche Regelung enthielt § 6 Nr. 3 KG von 1876.... Die geltende Fassung von § 59 beruht auf § 20 KUG.... DennSinn und Zweck sowie Rechtfertigung der Bestimmung liegen darin, Werke, die ohnehin der Allgemeinheit gewidmet sind und von jedermann ungehindert betrachtet werden können, für die Vervielfältigung und Verbreitung - allerdings nur in zweidimensionaler Kunst- oder Darstellungsform - sowie für die öffentliche Widergabe freizugeben sind (sa. BGB GRUR 2002, 605 - Verhüllter Reichstag; BGH GRUR 2003, 1035/1037 - Hundertwasser-Haus).
Das erste Bild ist zulässig, da die Statue bleibend angebracht war, die spätere Entfernung war beim Aufstellen nicht geplant. Bleibt die Frage, ob das zweite Bild zulässig ist, ob das Museum Europäische Kunst öffentlicher Raum ist. Auch hier wird Schricker deutlich: Sacheigentümer besitzen keinen Abwehranspruch aus §§ 903, 1004 BGB ... (BGB GRUR 1990, 390f - Friesenhaus)... Kommentare und Urteile sind im Folgenden nicht konsistent. Einerseits kann ein Eigentümer eine Statue aus seinem von der Straße einsehbaren Garten entfernen und sie danach gewerblich zu verwerten, wenn er sie so aufstellt, daß sie nur auf seinem Grundstück sichtbar ist (BGB GRUR 1975, 500/502 Schloß Tegel und andere). Von einer Vermutung, der Urheber habe mit der Errichtung eines Kunstwerkes an einem öffentlichen Platz sein Werk uneingeschränkt der Öffentlichkeit widmen wollen, kann ebenfalls nicht ausgegangen werden (ebenso Müller-Katzenburg NJW 1996, 2341/2345).
Da es sich um ein privates Museum handelt, liegt keine Panoramafreiheit vor, eine Zustimmung des Museums bzw. der Erben des Künstlers († 13. Februar 1991) ist erforderlich. --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 10:59, 24 August 2009 (UTC) sorry, my english is too bad to write this here correct.
On a more general note, § 129 I UrhG states: (1) Die Vorschriften dieses Gesetzes sind auch auf die vor seinem Inkrafttreten geschaffenen Werke anzuwenden, es sei denn, daß sie zu diesem Zeitpunkt urheberrechtlich nicht geschützt sind oder daß in diesem Gesetz sonst etwas anderes bestimmt ist. Dies gilt für verwandte Schutzrechte entsprechend.
Thus you may publish any photo that falls under Panoramafreiheit, regardless of when it was taken.
As for File:ArnoBrekerDiePartei.jpg, it depends on whether it has been photographed from public space. Apparently the castle that houses the museum is private property (see German Wikipedia article, including the yard and the park. Looking at it from Google Earth, it seems impossible that the picture was taken from a public street, but private parks are also considered public space if they are freely accessible. I have no clue whether this is the case here. -- H005 (talk) 11:49, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
zu diesem Zeitpunkt means "in 1965". Aber die Skulptur ist nicht mehr in Berlin bleibend oder ? Teofilo (talk) 12:51, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
zu diesem Zeitpunkt means the point of time the law has come into effect. The law also applies on works (in this case: the first photograph) that where created prior to the law. The first photograph is covered by current german law FOP even it was created far befor the law was installed on January 1 1966. --Martin H. (talk) 13:42, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
Today the sculpture is in private area. --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 13:19, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
You are now mixing comment regarding the two images. The first photograph is ok under FOP as the intention at the time of instaltion was to erect the statue permanently, the later destruction was not planned (Ralf). The second image is not ok as it was taken on a likely not public place (Ralf, also directly above). Even if the first photo was not covered by FOP at the time the photograph was taken it is no problem because also FOP applies retroactively (H005). --Martin H. (talk) 13:36, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
It's just nitpicking, but retroactively is not really the word of choise here, as all that was illegal before 1966 was still an illegal activity after 1966 that you could be sued for until it became time-barred. But today it is legal to publish such works, so there's not an issue. (Anyway, our conclusions are the same.) -- H005 (talk) 17:18, 24 August 2009 (UTC)

Schon das Gesetz von 1876 enthielt eine der heutigen FoP vergleichbare regelung. Es ist wurscht, wann ein zu dem Zeitpunkt bleibend installiertes Kunstwerk im öffentlichen Raum fotografiert wird. In Fall 2 sollte eine weitere Sachverhaltsaufklärung erfolgen, auch Privatgrund kann öffentlicher Straßenraum sein --Historiograf (talk) 18:41, 24 August 2009 (UTC)

Danke, Historiograf. Könntest du etwas darüber im Wikipediaartikel de:Panoramafreiheit reden ? Das älteste datum im diesem Artikel ist 2001, als ob diese deutsche Panoramafreiheit eine ganz moderne und neue Freiheit wäre... Teofilo (talk) 19:29, 24 August 2009 (UTC)
Ich habe im Schricker nur das oben zitierte gefunden, was darauf hinausläuft, daß es sein kann aber nicht muß... also ein bisschen Wischiwaschi. Friedhöfe fallen unter die Panoramafreiheit. Wenn das Museum tagsüber öffentlich zugänglich ist, würde ich auch auf Panoramafreiheit plädieren, wenn es nur mit Eintrittsgeld zugänglich ist, signalisiert der Besitzer, daß er die Kunstwerke vermarkten möchte - dann würde ich nach Interpretation des Schricker verneinen. --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 19:44, 24 August 2009 (UTC)

Permission from copyright holder

Does anyone know what is required for the copyright holder to grant permission for photos of artwork to be used on commons? This is in regard to statues in public areas in the U.S. Zaui (talk) 22:12, 28 August 2009 (UTC)

You can find some basic information at Commons:Email templates and Commons:OTRS. --Mormegil (talk) 14:41, 29 August 2009 (UTC)

France and Belgium

I need clarification on what is acceptable and what is not acceptable concerning images of structures in France and Belgium.

It would help if actual example images could be added to Commons:Freedom of panorama#France.

For example I have just nominated for deletion two images of the Millau Viaduct on the understanding that there is no Freedom of Panorama in France and on half-reading Commons:De minimis. However, it is likely I have misunderstood where the border between Ok and not Ok is.

X mark.svg Not OK because it has an artistic character or has "some" level of originality:

  • close-cropped images of the Louvre Pyramid, partly because it has some artistic character and not much utility? But Ok when it is not the main subject or when it unavoidably is part of a large panorama?
  • images of the Eiffel tower's lighting scheme because it is almost all artistic
  • images of the Atomium in Brussels, because its shapes serves no useful function

✓OK because there is insufficient artistic character:

  • Bridges such as the Millau Aqueduct, because they have a mainly utiltarian function?

84user (talk) 22:54, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

Check Commons:Deletion_requests/Images_of_Viaduc_de_Millau for the Millau bridge. Esby (talk) 11:55, 14 September 2009 (UTC)
Some of the other images are probably ok because of COM:DM. The images you labeled as 'Not Ok?' are not ok as you supposed. Esby (talk) 12:07, 14 September 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for the clarification Esby. You pointed to Commons:Deletion requests/Images of Viaduc de Millau which shows Milau bridge images being deleted, but there still remains confusion among some users (myself included) as to what the Commons consensus really is. For example is File:Millau-Viaduct-France-20070909.jpg Ok? Please see Commons:Deletion requests/File:Millau-Viaduct-France-20070909.jpg where some say keep because it is a "standard functional" bridge, others are saying delete because it is an "architectural work". I can see both views, sort of. -84user (talk) 21:15, 3 October 2009 (UTC)
It is true that there is an utilitarian design, but still, we can't be sure that a court will judge it this way. If also those kinds of bridges were this commons, people who not go there to look at it. Esby (talk) 17:14, 4 October 2009 (UTC)
Pretty sure the French court case said that photos of the entire plaza were fine -- so I don't think that first one needs to white out the pyramid. The others may well be problematic. Shame because they are very nice pictures in their own right. Carl Lindberg (talk) 19:28, 4 October 2009 (UTC)

France FOP revisited

Grande Arche de La Défense covered by a silhouette - is this now non-copyright infringing?

I just noticed File:Grande Arche de La Défense et fontaine.jpg has been judged to be deleted at Commons:Deletion requests/Images of Grande Arche. A January 2008 Deletion request resulted in all Keeps, due to Commons:De minimis. Might I suggest the following rule of thumb for deciding de Minimis?

The arch takes up about 938 pixels of a 3008 pixel wide image, this is about 31% of the total width. This compares to the 229 pixel wide Louvre pyramid in the 1200 pixel wide image at the De minimis article, or 19%.

Comparing areas, the Grande Arche has 908x938=851704 over 6040064 total or 14%, while the pyramid has 229x64=14656 over 964800 total or 1.5%, much smaller. So, 19% is too much and 1.5% is Ok, so how about 5% being the threshold? If Commons decides on an approximate threshold, a simple silhouette image in a Help page would then better guide users what to expect. 84user (talk) 02:55, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Seriously if a threshold value was possible it would be in the french law already. There are other matters to take into consideration including the subject of the photography. Esby (talk) 09:07, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
I'm the admin who closed Commons:Deletion requests/Images of Grande Arche. I based my decision upon the relative size of the Grande Arche compared to the other possible subjects (fountain, buildings), not to the entire picture. Let's say you have a monument commemorating something (a battle, possibly) in the middle of the countryside. A wide-angle picture taken from afar would show pastures and trees and your monument, taking perhaps 5% of the whole picture. Still, I'm not sure you could convincingly argue that the monument is not your main subject. Conversely, File:Grande Arche de La Défense et fontaine.jpg is composed so that the lines formed by the illuminated fountain carefully frame the Grande Arche. I'm amazed that people could call the Grande Arche "peripheral" to the picture.
Plus, I think the situation of the Louvre Pyramid is different. You cannot take a picture of the Cour Napoléon without the Pyramid, but you can take a picture of the fountain in File:Grande Arche de La Défense et fontaine.jpg without the Grande Arche. If you face the other way, you've got the fountain + some skyline and the perspective of the Arc de Triomphe. So, that picture shows the Grande Arche on purpose.
I think your rule of thumb is useful, but that other elements come into account, such as the composition of the picture. Jastrow (Λέγετε) 11:28, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Netherlands FOP restrictions

Where incorporation of a work in a compilation is concerned, not more than a few of the works of the same author may be included."

The above is from Template:FoP-Nederland and is included at Commons:Freedom of panorama#The Netherlands.

This appears to restrict the reuser of such images. Doesn't this mean that I, as a potential reuser, cannot make a collage containing more than a few images of works (sculptures or buildings for example) by the same author? If yes, maybe a small note could be added to the template for such images, in a similar way as should be noted for Commons:De minimis images (that cropping of the copyrighted portion is not allowed). Also, shouldn't each images of such works have the author indicated (using {{Creator}} maybe), so that the reuser knows whenever more than a few images are being used?

Of the English translation of the Dutch law I read Article 16 paragraph 3 which refers to compilations and appears to include architectural works, and the proviso given "seems" to restrict the number to just one ("with the proviso that where two or more such works were communicated to the public together, the reproduction of only one of them shall be permitted."). However I am a complete non-expert in any law, hence my question. -84user (talk) 21:12, 20 September 2009 (UTC)

FOP restrictions - NC, ND

Commons does not regard images with non-commercial and non-derivative restrictions as sufficiently free. So that is why images of art from countries with non-commercial FOP are not alllowed here. But why are photos of art from countires with non-derivative FOP ok? See Germam law text. I do not understand policy here. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 20:19, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

I'm pretty sure we consider that clause to be more a part of moral rights, not copyright. In any event, the clause is referring to the underlying work, not the photo itself -- derivatives are most certainly fine. Been hashed over more than once before; Commons talk:Freedom of panorama/Archive 1#Germany is one place. Carl Lindberg (talk) 04:39, 30 September 2009 (UTC)
Ok, thank you for that link. I had misinterpreted a sentence on about the "Freiburger Holbeinpferd". But those images here are a problem? /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 06:53, 30 September 2009 (UTC)


Article 29 of the Liechtenstein copyright act (de) is word-to-word identical to article 27 of the Swiss act (de). Could someone add a 'Liechtenstein' section? Or should this be treated in the Switzerland section? --Steffen Löwe Gera (talk) 20:37, 3 October 2009 (UTC)

Photos of Icelandic buildings should not be forbidden

The section about the rules in Iceland says: If the work is the main subject of the photo and the photo is used commercially, the author of the work (this applies to both buildings and other works!) is entitled to remuneration, unless the publication of the image is in a newspaper or a TV broadcast. I think whoever wrote this is wrong! You only have to pay royalties if the photo is used for "marketing purposes". The use of pictures in Wikipedia to show what a building looks like is not the "marketing purposes" that the law reefers to. The parliamentary bill says it's only for works that are made for profit and names postcards as an example. There are many photos taken in Iceland being considered for deletion.. Gumol (talk) 21:42, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

The issue is not whether Wikimedia can use it, but whether it conforms to our definition of free media. As it has restrictions on who can use it for what purpose, it does not, thus should be deleted. -mattbuck (Talk) 22:16, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
We do allow for exceptions on what can be done with the pictures, e.g. when there are people in the picture (it is believed that you cannot use such pictures in marketing according to Finnish law). The requirement that media can be used commersially is because you should be able to live from selling printed (paper or CD) versions of Wikipedia, Wikibooks & al. Using pictures for marketing is outside the project's scope and should not hinder us to use useful and otherwise free pictures.
If the law is prohibiting use for profit (and not only for marketing) then the pictures are indeed non-free. I do not trust my Swedish enough to try to read law in Islandic (at least not without being pointed to the right section), so I leave the clarification to others.
--LPfi (talk) 14:52, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
We only allow for exceptions if the basis is something other than copyright law -- and those aren't really exceptions, they are non-copyright restrictions. If copyright law in particular does not allow use in basically all circumstances, then it is not considered "free" and we can't host it (even if Wikimedia's own use is within such boundaries) -- postcards being a very good example. The requirement for free media is indeed philosophical and not just for Wikimedia's own use; some folks sell hard copies of Wikimedia content, which can can be considered "for profit" and is explicitly intended to be OK. As for restrictions which come from other types of law, in those cases we just make sure that Wikimedia's own use complies with the laws. Carl Lindberg (talk) 15:43, 26 October 2009 (UTC)
Generally, yes. But if we have similar pictures from Iceland and Finland, where use for marketing is forbidden for copyright reasons in Iceland and for defamation reasons in Finland, I think it is silly to remove the Icelandic ones – at least where it concerns large, hard-to-replace categories. That would be to boycot one country because of its laws for no obvious practical benefit. If postcards and other commersial use is forbidden, then of course the pictures are unusable. I hope Gumol or someone else can clarify (it would be nice if also the relevant sections of the law could be pointed out). --LPfi (talk) 07:18, 27 October 2009 (UTC)
As silly as it may seem, yes, that is the situation. Restrictions which based on copyright render the works fundamentally incompatible with "free" copyright licenses; restrictions outside of copyright (such as trademark or defamation) do not. Because the concept of "free works" is based (and enforced) through copyright, we have to follow those laws down all these possible paths. If that is the law in Iceland, we need to follow it, and it sounds like that law prevents these types of works from being licensed with a "free" license as they are considered derivative works still subject to the permission of the author of the original work, and such permission is needed to license the file with CC-BY etc. in the first place. That situation is not prevented by other types of restrictions, so "free" copyright licenses given by the photographer in that case are valid (since only the copyright is being licensed). Carl Lindberg (talk) 07:35, 27 October 2009 (UTC)


Over the past two months we have had one user submitting many many images from Greece for deletion (example), saying that there is no freedom of panorama there. As I understand it, this isn't a settled issue and the law is not enforced in the way that this user claims. He agreed to a centralized discussion of the issue, rather than having the same discussion on each of a few hundred request for deletion pages, so here we go. Can we start with a link to the relevant law both in Greek and in English? -- ArielGlenn (talk) 14:46, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

The original greek text is available on wikisource: Ν.2121/93. The translation in english is available from WIPO in this PDF document: (already linked to from COM:L#Greece). I don't know of any related cases brought to the greek courts. I also don't know if this law has ever been actively enforced. Sv1xv (talk) 15:26, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
Thank you. Is the copy on Wikisource current (with all current amendments)? For example I found this: [2] which appears to have amendments through 2007. -- ArielGlenn (talk) 15:34, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
No, it is not. However AFAIK this particular paragraph has not been amended since. Sv1xv (talk) 15:36, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
I do not like the iconoclasm, but according to commons policy these images are to be deleted, because commons requires that postcard publishers should be free to use any image on commons. This policy does not serve the wikipedias very well. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 15:56, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
You don't like mebut you have right. Greek postcards don't show recent buildings and statues, they show ancient. Iconoclast (talk) 17:18, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

I must say that it is already researched by some wikipedians/lawyers. According to most interpretations of the law there is no FOP in Greece, but one of them noted some minor things and a court case that could be favorable to us. Because of the summer holidays it was agreed that we'll wait for September before the final conclusion. If the conclusion is a definite no-FOP we will prepare a massive deletion both from commons and el.wikipedia, so please wait a little and do not nominate files for deletion one by one. --Geraki TLG 16:31, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

Let's wait. El Greco (talk) 01:16, 28 August 2009 (UTC)
While you "wait" someone called BanyanTree deleted the clock of Syntagma Square which was used in the Greek Wikipedia. M.Lahanas (talk) 06:28, 30 August 2009 (UTC)
More follow in the dustbin soon! Iconoclast (talk) 10:53, 30 August 2009 (UTC)
Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Please, be civil! Sv1xv (talk) 11:20, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

It might be useful to mention that some pictures of modern buildings in Greece are available on Google Maps and/or Google Earth. For instance, see pictures of "Megaron Mousikis" (w:Athens Concert Hall) on Google Earth (a picture of which has already been nominated for deletion). --Flyax (talk) 07:20, 28 August 2009 (UTC)

And don't forget the impressive aerial photos of They show even the Atomium in Brussels! Sv1xv (talk) 07:44, 28 August 2009 (UTC)

What Iconoclast claims is absolutely not true. I have personally a postcard in my bedroom of Rio-Antirrio bridge, a modern structure. Besides, it is so funny this user acts as a person following rules, and he got two warnings for repeated vandalisms on wikimedia commons! He also got indefinitely blocked from editing english wikipedia.--The daydreamer (talk) 14:26, 29 August 2009 (UTC)

Yesterday I went to Syntagma Square and browsed through the postcards on sale at the kiosks. I was surprised to discover that there are no postcards at all with a modern building or statue as the central subject. The only exceptions were a night photo inside Athens Olympic Stadium (possibly shot during the 2004 Summer Olympics) and a couple of photos of Rio-Antirrio bridge. Many years ago you could buy postcards depicting Athens Hilton, modern statues etc, now they are no longer on sale. I don't know if the societies of Architects and Sculpturers have requested that modern works are not used commercially, but I suspect that this is the case. For the Rio-Antirrio bridge I have two explanations: either the postcards are licensed or bridges are not architectural works in the strict sense, they are specifically contracted as civil engineering works. Sv1xv (talk) 14:43, 29 August 2009 (UTC)
(Addendum) I checked on for this w:en:User:Iconoclast. He was not indefinitely blocked for some mischief, he just created an account over two years ago and never activated it. Perhaps the Iconoclast is a different person. Sv1xv (talk) 19:43, 29 August 2009 (UTC)
The Icononclast user account is not global. Although the en:wiki user was indefinitely blocked (probably for this [3]) I doubt this has anything to do with the current user. However his uploading and cropping of a copyrighted photo on commons (after raising copyright issues on other people's images) is a bit ironic. Anyways, I'm interested in the substance of the thing: let's see what the lawyers have to say. -- ArielGlenn (talk) 04:00, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

Now there is September but your lawyers do no answer for the Freedom Of Panorama in Greece case. Why? You try to forget the thing, you don't talk for it at all. Iconoclast (talk) 14:03, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

The lawyers (i am one of them) are trying to locate a court decision that might be in favor of keeping all those images you are sending for deletion. You are not the only copyright-sensitive person on both projects so please be patient. Rest assured that if our findings are not favorable we shall be the first to propose a massive deletion. --Alaniaris (talk) 15:25, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Since I`m not a law expert,I would just like to inform you that some images have been deleted (i.e.) after user:Iconclast mark them for deletion,so they should be raised from the dead,if a final conclusion is to keep all of these images. CrniBombarder!!! (talk) 13:33, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

Greece: Occasional publication

Sometimes, when the law is not specific enough and there are no relevant court decisions, the local customs are also important. This [4] is a press photo created by a local agency "Eurokinisi" and puplished yesterday in the front page of "Kathimerini", a morning newspaper with national distribution. The building is an old one, the statue at the center of the picture is still under copyright and the lighting is possibly protected by copyright (designed by Georgios Parmenidis, currently professor at the School of Architecture, National Technical University). While it is a press photo, it is not "occasional" in the strict sense. Sv1xv (talk) 07:20, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Well, a Danish newspaper published a photo of the Little-mermaid statue, in its travel supplement, following their custom. Then they got sued by the heirs of the sculptor, and lost in court. In Denmark, the media are allowed to illustrate news articles with this kind of images (for example reports about another chopping off of the mermaid's head), but this exemption did not extend to travel brochures, not even when published by a newspaper, the court said. Anyway, in the discussion above someone had studied postcards on sale in Greece, and had noticed that postcards of statues and modern architecture had mostly disappeared. That suggests that at least postcards publishers are aware of the issue. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 07:34, 2 September 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps you missed the point, I comment on the "occasional" clause, not the one about "mass media". There is no doubt that it is a standard press photo. Sv1xv (talk) 07:48, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Pieter Kuiper is moving along the right lines: What he presents is proof that in Denmark, there is a law and it is in use. Do we have any proof that the relevant law Greece has ever been enforced? --FocalPoint (talk) 14:30, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

I'm afraid that Peter Kuiper did not read carefully what I wrote before posting his answer. I started this sub-section to comment specifically on the occasional clause according to local customs, not about the permission of FOP only to the mass media or the enforcement of the FOP restrictions. Sv1xv (talk) 14:58, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
It does not really help that "occasional use occasional publication by the mass media" is allowed. Commons only wants these photos when "any use" is allowed. Now, some "FoP OK" countries do have restrictions. For exempel COM:FOP#The Netherlands says that the law does not allow one to compile a work with more than a few works by an artist. That seems to be ok according to the very strict rules on commons. The Greek law may in fact be rather similar to the Dutch law. In that case we can keep the Greek images too. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 20:25, 12 September 2009 (UTC) I struck some of my comments, Greece is more like Denmark. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 09:05, 13 September 2009 (UTC)
I started a discussion in this subsection only about the occasional publication (not occasional use) clause, quite separate from the press only vs. any use clause. The "FOP in Greece" issue has three aspects: occasional publication, by mass media and enforcement (if, when and how). Each one should be analyzed separately before we can come to a conclusion. I also started a subsection about enforcement, as FocalPoint made a comment about it. Sv1xv (talk) 20:44, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
You go to an occasional jail! Iconoclast (talk) 05:27, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

Iconoclast has proven beyond doubt that his aim is not protection but disruption of the commons, yet he is useful for this discussion. The answer is no, dear Iconoclast. In such cases, it is reasonable to expect a formal notification, asking you to comply .. or else... (en:Cease and desist) If the Commons do receive such a notification, then it is up to the Commons and Wikimedia to either gracefully accept it and back off (if we think there is a strong possibility to lose the case) or stand up and fight, as it did with the National Gallery case (please somenone put a link here).--FocalPoint (talk) 07:03, 26 September 2009 (UTC)

Don't worry about User:Iconoclast, he is blocked for a month. Sv1xv (talk) 09:17, 26 September 2009 (UTC)

Greece: Enforcement of FOP restriction

@ FocalPoint: As I wrote earlier, I don't know of any case in which this prohibition was enforced by a court of law. However I have reasons to suspect that there have been cases in which there was a settlement in private, after an interested party (possibly a trade union) threatened with legal action. Sv1xv (talk) 15:03, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

BTW, I would like to see if User:Alaniaris, who may have access to a database of legal texts, discovers something relevant. Sv1xv (talk) 20:48, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

I have not heard of any case either, but this has to be verified. --FocalPoint (talk) 08:47, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

There might have been a case that i am trying to locate but its unclear whether it refers to article 26 exclusively or as a secondary matter. I do have access to the Athens Law Society database but there is nothing about FOP, nor in any legal magazine, textbook or any other source. Let me tell you something else: If you ask any lawyer that is not practicing copyright law, as well as any judge, what freedom of panorama is, he doesn't know. Why? Because the expression "freedom of panorama" is a loan from foreign legal systems. In Greece its all about use or protection, can I or I cannot, right or wrong. Sv1xv said above that there are not any postcards of Athens Hilton or modern statues and suspects that the societies of Architects and Sculpturers have requested that modern works are not used commercially. I very much doubt it and i am pretty sure about it. If that was the case we would have some form of legal claim, perhaps a court or settlement decision, something. Up until this moment you find nothing about FOP in Greek legal literature and it appears that article 26 has never been challenged. The most likely scenario for Sv1xv's observation in Syntagma Square is that Athens Hilton doesn't sell any more, nowadays its all about the 2004 games. And yes, The Rio-Antirrio bridge, strictly following art. 26, does have copyright.

Copyright literature is quite limited since Greece has only one relevant law. The majority of textbooks do nothing more than to reproduce article 26 and strictly explain it letter by letter. Whether a court decision would follow literature or suggest an other path has yet to be seen. What i would like is more time, time to see if i can find that court decision i stated above, time to contact associations of photographers. Strictly speaking there is no FOP in Greece. In reality nobody knows FOP in Greece and it has never been challenged. Conclusions are all yours. --Alaniaris (talk) 14:46, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

It's not only Athens Hilton which you can't find on postcards. I have not seen a single postcard showing a modern building or sculpture. I only found a postcard with Xylothrafstis (wood-breaker) by D. Philippotis, but this one in PD, as Philippotis died in 1919.
Regarding Rio-Antirrio bridge, I can assure you that when the design of a bridge is contracted by the Greek Government, no architect is a part of the contract. It is strictly a civil engineering project with an additional electrical engineering contract for lighting. Therefore it is not listed explicitly in the definition of "work" in article 2.1 of Law 2121.
For an association of photographers, you may try this: w:el:User_talk:Sv1xv#Foebusds. Sv1xv (talk) 15:03, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

When the police knocks your door, go and ask Wikipedia for help! Iconoclast (talk) 15:44, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

The last thing the Greek Police would care about is whether Commons hosts non-FOP images. Pending a resolution on this issue, could you please stop nominating photos for deletion, as you've been requested to a dozen times already? Your behaviour approaches trolling levels. Constantine 22:19, 15 September 2009 (UTC)
I think the law is pretty plain, and it isn't free enough for Commons. Structures such as bridges are hard to separate from their useful functions though and should be all right. -Nard the Bard 03:23, 16 September 2009 (UTC)
Can we let the lawyers finish their research? They have some expertise in the area, both by virtue of living there and knowing the common practice, and by legal training. I would trust what they come up wth more than I would trust my own impressions that were just based on reading the text of the law. Thanks, -- ArielGlenn (talk) 07:20, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

I will repeat and append here the text I inserted in another paragraph, because it is also pertinent here:

Iconoclast has proven beyond doubt that his aim is not protection but disruption of the commons, yet he is useful for this discussion. In such cases, it is reasonable to expect a formal notification, asking you to comply .. or else... (en:Cease and desist) If the Commons do receive such a notification, then it is up to the Commons and Wikimedia to either gracefully accept it and back off (if we think there is a strong possibility to lose the case) or stand up and fight, as it did with the National Gallery case (please somenone put a link here).--FocalPoint (talk) 07:04, 26 September 2009 (UTC)

In the NPG case the Wikimedia Foundation has and always has had a very clearcut position about reuse of images of public domain works. That is not helpful to us here, however. We need to know what the intent of the Greek law is and how it is applied; this should tell us if the images we have would be considered legal or not. Of course I hope for the best, but whatever the outcome, I also hope we will hear from Alaniaris and his colleagues soon. -- ArielGlenn (talk) 07:34, 26 September 2009 (UTC)

Just a note: I don't really think postcards were pulled because of NFOP. I was downtown a couple of weeks ago (yes, photographing evil copyrighted buildings and art, and then disseminating the photos, as I plan to do repeatedly) and I checked rather closely the available postcards. I managed to find a collage with the statue at Klafthmonos square, the Concert Hall, the Hilton, the Dromeas, another card with the statue of Alekos the Great in Salonica, panoramas of Syndagma square etc. At Monastiraki and Thissio you can rather easily find postcards with the New Acropolis Museum, the Concert Hall, sports venues like the Olympic Complex and Stadium, the Peace and Friendship stadium, etcetera. It's true that they are outnumbered by the antiquities postcards, but I think that is simply for two reasons: a) noone buys (Athens not exactly being the capital of modern architecture and artistic beauty), b) everyone that can afford a trip to greece nowadays can also afford a decent digicam, and tear the city to shreds with it. Also opening some travel guides, there were some photos there too.

I'm only mentioning this because, the general picture is, empirically speaking, that noone in Greece is agressively (like the Little Mermaid people) or even regularly claiming their copyrights from publicly exhibited 3-d works. Otherwise we would have found court decisions and evidence aplenty while looking into this (as we have found decisions about the actual "theft" of photos), and we have been looking into it since spring. And, it wouldn't of course be a mid-priority issue. So, the Wikimedia projects will have the "priviledge" to be the first to "educate" the general public about yet another legal restriction in this country.

The law is unfortunately not that plain Nard, here on Commons the Greek FOP paragraph went from 'whatever' to green to red, and in the literature that was researched the internet was sometimes discussed as a potential media, other times not, and the "occasional" both as "de minimis" and "non permanent". It's really a crazy law as someone mentioned, the term of FOP totally unknown here, and that's why the remarks of surprise by many users, but in the end of the day there can only be one interpretation; I can only hope it's a positive one. Alaniaris will explain the legal part better I guess, he's almost through with his research, and we'll wrap this up. Just note that a portion of those photos could be uploaded and used as fair use on the greek wiki so in the event that we're a no-go on the legal part it's still not "shoot on sight" for everything greek and FOPpish. - Badseed talk 08:56, 9 October 2009 (UTC)

Greek FOP: conclusion?

Can we get an update on this from the lawyers? It's been an open issue for a while now, and we need a definitive answer. –Tryphon 12:04, 27 September 2009 (UTC)

I have an appointment with a Photographers Association next week, that 'll be my last chance on finding any cases that have challenged the issue of art.26, or any other information they might have. Please excuse my absence but it is pre-election period here in Greece and has thrown everything off schedule, making my time rather hectic. Thank you --Alaniaris (talk) 15:00, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

Vote early and often! ;-) -- ArielGlenn (talk) 03:57, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

With the appointment i had this week i concluded my research. It has been quite hard to find something favorable and unfortunately i don't have good news for keeping all those images. The conclusions i've drawn are the following:

  1. There in not a single case that might have challenged the issue of article 26, and there won't be any for many more years. Art. 26 has only been referred once in an irrelevant to copyright issues case, along with other articles of Law 2121, only to prove that architecture belongs to applied arts. That case's decision was deemed unimportant to be published in any legal publication or Athens Law Society database.
  2. The sense of FOP does not exist in Greek legal practice or literature. As i said above it is a loan, unknown to anyone that is not a part of the Wikimedia projects. Even lawyers that practice copyright law in Greece have never heard the expression "Freedom of Panorama".
  3. Since there has been no case law on art. 26 we will have to rely solely on the article itself as well as copyright literature. The majority of that literature tends to follow a very strict explanation of art. 26, insisting on the "occasional" use of the images and thus concluding that the use of such images should be in such a manner that it does not affect the financial rights of the copyright holder that derive from his creations. In other words we can use whatever we want, as long as noone makes any money out of it.
  4. That point was the common conclusion of everyone i' ve talked to. Since we allow our images to be used even for profit making purposes, one can argue that our permission does not fall within the strict limitation of "occasional use". If there was someone that wanted to sue us that would have been the most likely point to support his case.
  5. It is safe as well as we are allowed to have photographs that picture general themes, even if they include copyrighted applied arts items, but we cannot have images where the main subject is copyrighted (but you already knew this).

To be honest i strongly believe that noone would ever say something, let alone sue us, over FOP. Everyone's first answer was "since its your pictures and you 're not stealing from someone else it fine to do them whatever you like". That point prove that copyright issues in Greece is still in a baby state. The vast majority of case law refers to stolen software or music but not on any derivatives from copyrighted items, whatever they might be. Legal cost are quite high to pursue a stolen photograph. Of course that is not an argument on keeping the images, i am only illustrating a general point in Greek reality.

Unfortunately FOP, the way we know and explain it, does not exist in Greece. Any image that its main subject is copyrighted should be removed. Please exercise your discretion on identifying what is or is not FOP and do the deletions in an orderly fashion, giving enough time to the uploaders to back their work up. Thank you --Alaniaris (talk) 15:00, 10 October 2009 (UTC)

Symbol delete vote.svg Delete Now it is my time to laugh and your time to cry. Iconoclast 18:32, 10 October 2009 (UTC)—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk • contribs) 18:33, 10 October 2009 (UTC)(added unsigned tag-84user (talk) 21:55, 10 October 2009 (UTC))
You have some serious personal issues to solve mate. Question to Alaniaris: According to point #5 above, it's safe to assume that De minimis does apply to Greece, right? --Ferengi (talk) 06:21, 13 October 2009 (UTC)
Yes Ferengi, "De Minimis" does apply to Greece. --Alaniaris (talk) 13:19, 13 October 2009 (UTC)
How do we want to handle this issue then. There are a large number of images that were nominated by Iconoclast and are on hold pending resolution. What's our way forward from here? --Labattblueboy (talk) 23:43, 7 November 2009 (UTC)