Our Legal Rights to Photograph in Public Places?

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Our Legal Rights to Photograph in Public Places?

Postby concept » 19 Dec 2006, 10:41

Having just read this Wired article http://www.wired.com/news/wiredmag/0,72315-0.html?tw=rss.index about a person's rights to take photos in/of public spaces in the United States, I'm reminded of a long-standing question about whether something similar applies in Taiwan.

I'm not talking about photos featuring specific (non-celebrity) people (discussed at http://forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopic.php?t=54799); just of buildings or sidewalks or storefronts/names or whatever else you happen to see while walking down the street. I've been stopped before from taking a picture of a construction site (those tall cranes) before, and I've seen someone get stopped from taking a picture of a really neat looking bicycle ... which happened to have a storefront behind.

So ... the question is, are we legally allowed to take photos of things that are easily viewable from public locations without prosecution or security guard trouble?

Thanks!
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Postby twocs » 19 Dec 2006, 12:12

I know that you cannot take pictures of military bases in Taiwan. They will get upset if you try.

Check out this thread on a similar subject: Need to pay to film Taipei 101
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Postby ironlady » 19 Dec 2006, 21:38

This is why I still use my Nikon Coolpix 2500 camera (but there is a new model, 6 megapixel, out from them now with a similar design) -- it has a swiveling lens. You can stop and seem to be doing something with the menu or looking at previously taken pictures, but since the lens swivels, you can actually be taking pictures of things at angles no one would suspect.

Personally, my take is that if you build something as big as Taipei 101 and someone wants to take a picture of it (not for commercial use, I mean, just a snap) you'd better have developed some kind of cloaking technology if you want to stop them. :D
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Postby Belgian Pie » 19 Dec 2006, 22:12

You can not just make pictures of things, properties, persons when it's fully recognizable and use it for commercial reasons.

Example: 101, The Atomium in Brussels, the Taj Mahal in India and many other monuments and buildings, private properties ... you'll need a release form from the owner, architect, or person taking care are owning the rights to it.

I was even stopped from taking a picture of dead meat on a stick in Gaoxiong :lol:

Airports, train stations, military bases, and presidential (royal) palaces are normally of limits ...

Mostly nothing will held against you when not used for commercial purposes ... if they don't contest you taking a picture.

News, events, press conferences, festivals or major piublic events are allowed to be photographed and the pictures used for news covering, or editorial pictures ...

That's about what I know about it ... but in the US, most is in the gray area and without a release you could be sued any moment ...
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Postby Chris » 20 Dec 2006, 00:50

twocs wrote:I know that you cannot take pictures of military bases in Taiwan. They will get upset if you try.


True pretty much everywhere - the US is no exception!
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Postby Doctor Evil » 02 Mar 2007, 14:23

belgian pie wrote:That's about what I know about it ... but in the US, most is in the gray area and without a release you could be sued any moment ...


You've worked as a photographer in the US?
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Postby Belgian Pie » 02 Mar 2007, 15:02

Doctor Evil wrote:
belgian pie wrote:That's about what I know about it ... but in the US, most is in the gray area and without a release you could be sued any moment ...


You've worked as a photographer in the US?


Does it matter .. or is it just your ego that wants to know ...?
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Postby Poagao » 02 Mar 2007, 15:13

Take a picture of the cops, get arrested.
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Postby Doctor Evil » 02 Mar 2007, 15:42

belgian pie wrote:
Doctor Evil wrote:
belgian pie wrote:That's about what I know about it ... but in the US, most is in the gray area and without a release you could be sued any moment ...


You've worked as a photographer in the US?


Does it matter .. or is it just your ego that wants to know ...?


You made the statement about being sued in the US. I just wondered if you have any experience shooting or being sued in the US. Or if it's just more of your mouth.

I suspect it's the later.
"Hatred as an element of the struggle; a relentless hatred of the enemy, impelling us over and beyond the natural limitations that man is heir to and transforming him into an effective, violent, selective and cold killing machine. Our soldiers must be thus; a people without hatred cannot vanquish a brutal enemy. We must carry the war into every corner the enemy happens to carry it: to his home, to his centers of entertainment; a total war. It is necessary to prevent him from having a moment of peace, a quiet moment outside his barracks or even inside; we must attack him wherever he may be; make him feel like a cornered beast wherever he may move. Then his moral fiber shall begin to decline. He will even become more beastly, but we shall notice how the signs of decadence begin to appear." - Che Guevara, Message to the Tricontinental
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Postby Doctor Evil » 02 Mar 2007, 15:44

Poagao wrote:Take a picture of the cops, get arrested.


Sounds more like refusing to follow a police officers instructions and getting arrested.
"Hatred as an element of the struggle; a relentless hatred of the enemy, impelling us over and beyond the natural limitations that man is heir to and transforming him into an effective, violent, selective and cold killing machine. Our soldiers must be thus; a people without hatred cannot vanquish a brutal enemy. We must carry the war into every corner the enemy happens to carry it: to his home, to his centers of entertainment; a total war. It is necessary to prevent him from having a moment of peace, a quiet moment outside his barracks or even inside; we must attack him wherever he may be; make him feel like a cornered beast wherever he may move. Then his moral fiber shall begin to decline. He will even become more beastly, but we shall notice how the signs of decadence begin to appear." - Che Guevara, Message to the Tricontinental
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