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This article was published on July 2, 2015


Wikipedia is fighting to stop Europe from banning use of photos taken in public places

Wikipedia is fighting to stop Europe from banning use of photos taken in public places


Owen Williams
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Owen Williams

Former TNW employee

Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their word Owen was a reporter for TNW based in Amsterdam, now a full-time freelance writer and consultant helping technology companies make their words friendlier. In his spare time he codes, writes newsletters and cycles around the city.

In Europe, an exception in copyright law allows people to make and use photographs of public spaces without restriction.

Called the ‘Freedom of Panorama,’ the provision allows Wikipedia to use imagery of public places across Europe for free while still protecting the artist’s rights.

The organization is now fighting for that right to be retained as the European Parliament is considering revoking Freedom of Panorama.

Freedom_of_Panorama_world_map
Credit: Wikipedia
Countries with Freedom of Panorama provisions

If implemented, Wikimedia estimates that “tens of thousands” of images embedded in articles about buildings, art and other public places will need to be taken down.

The move would be a blow for Wikipedia, along with other websites taking advantage of the provision.

It’s urging European citizens to contact their respective members of the European Parliament and tell them to block the change before it becomes law.

Images of modern buildings must remain on Wikipedia [Wikimedia]

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