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Last summer we all came together to save the Freedom of Panorama. With a total of 555,223 people signing the petition, the European Parliament listened to us and recommended that the European Commission not restrict this freedom. However, the fight is not yet over. They have to hear us again. In this way you can save the Freedom of Panorama, and even broaden it to the European countries which don’t have it yet!

Now it’s up to the European Commission, and this is our chance to tell them what we think about the Freedom of Panorama. They started a public consultation to hear your opinion on this topic. Don’t miss this chance to speak up. Your voice was heard in summer 2015, and it will be heard again this time!

Here you can respond to the consultation, it will take you 6 minutes.

After you fill in the “general information about you” you may skip the step “The role of publishers in the copyright value chain” if that’s not interesting for you and proceed with the “Use of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places (the ‘panorama exception’)”.

As the wording of the survey is somewhat difficult to understand and off-putting for ‘lay’ persons, especially regarding unclarified double-negative legalistic language, we greatly appreciate the help of a UK educator who also signed the petition for Freedom of Panorama last summer and now completed the survey. She gives additional information and her view as an educator on the impact on everyday users of photography and how to word a submission, which are all useful. As she particularly wants to protect Freedom of Panorama for the younger generation, find her personal statements below the respective questions and examples of answers.

Respond in English, German or French!

It takes approximately 6 Minutes.

 

A quick guidance through the 7 questions:

1. When uploading your images of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places on the internet, have you faced problems related to the fact that such works were protected by copyright?

A problem may not only be that the rights holder contacted you but also that you have no clear understanding whether or not your actions are legal, when you upload an image, which is a problem in itself.

2. When providing online access to images of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places, have you faced problems related to the fact that such works were protected by copyright?

Not relevant to most people, although it may be for you if you provide online access for others.

3. Have you been using images of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places, in the context of your business/activity, such as publications, audiovisual works or advertising?

If you have ever published a photo of a building where you could not have been certain as to whether its architect had died more than 70 years ago, then the correct answer is “Yes, on the basis of an exception”.

[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″]Yes, on the basis of an exception. It is impossible to know how long ago the architect died before I share a picture of a building with colleagues for a school project. – An educator from the UK[/quote]

4. Do you license/offer licenses for the use of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places?

Relevant for architects and artists who build sculptures

5. What would be the impact on you/your activity of introducing an exception at the EU level covering non-commercial uses of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places?

If you’re in favor of the Freedom of Panorama and you like to publish photos of public buildings then it would have a strong positive impact.

[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″]A strong positive impact. I use photos of buildings and sculptures in education. Buildings and sculptures which were designed and erected to be in the public domain should not have public access and appreciation reduced for narrow commercial gain. Architects and sculptors have been rewarded already for their efforts; owners charge rent or fees for their usage. It will become a tax on using our eyes if we have to pay fees every time we share a picture which includes a building or sculpture in the public domain.[/quote]

6. What would be the impact on you/your activity of introducing an exception at the EU level covering both commercial and non-commercial uses of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be located permanently in public places?

Bear in mind that Facebook and Instagram, for example, commercially use photographs that you upload. So if you answered question 5 with a strong positive impact and you use such networks, then also this introduction would have a strong positive impact.
Also consider that without the freedom of panorama, photographers or journalists are not simply able to share their portfolio with you on the internet.

[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″]A strong positive impact. We should be able to access freely photos of architecture and sculpture in the public domain and share these on social media via the internet, including works by journalists and photographers. It is also unmanageable to forbid or charge such widespread usage – look at all the ‘selfies’ tourists take and share via phones, with a background of architecture and sculpture: How – and why – should this be policed? These are personally relevant, memorable items sometimes with persons in the foreground, and should be free. Over-extending copyright will be like placing notices or screens to shield architecture and sculpture from view altogether: the opposite of the reason for creating them in the first place – to be viewed and enjoyed by all.[/quote]

7. Is there any other issue that should be considered as regards the ‘panorama exception’ and the copyright framework applicable to the use of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, made to be permanently located in public places?

This is your opportunity to bring up any other issue in this regard that comes to your mind.

[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″]Yes – No market data. I am a governor of 3 UK schools and have 25 years of experience in education. School displays and teaching resources often have to feature images of works of architecture or sculpture to illustrate the taught curriculum and inspire pupils to know and understand their environment or appreciate technology or artistic form. Pupils have to be encouraged to explore, access and share photography to extend their own understanding and skills. Extending copyright will restrict this – and it will also put an unfair price on aesthetic appreciation for the young.[/quote]
 

Answer the European Commission in English, German or French!
 

Thank you very much for supporting the Freedom of Panorama!

I’m very glad the European Commission is taking this matter seriously and I’m glad they give us the unique opportunity to raise our voices. Please spend these 5 minutes to take part in the consultation!
If you need any help or have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact us and see what we can do for you.
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