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Street photography in Europe under threat - this time for real.

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I'm not sure about the other Nordic countries, but property in general has no rights in Sweden. We also have a "post-card" exception in our copyright law that says it is OK to photograph and publish permanently displayed out-door artwork. But if someone publish a picture of the Nokia HQ in an ad for Sony-Ericsson, there will be trouble, but that is under another law all together. What I don't understand is panorama thing. The more pictures of Stockholm published around the world, the better for our tourist industry. Maybe they don't want tourists in Paris?

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Banning the use of after shave, limiting razors to two blades, standardising the length of spaghetti strands, standardising the size of toilet paper sheets, or something that might actually benefit mankind!!!!!!!

Don't forget standardizing the amount of toppings a pizza could have is very very important as well, if not slightly more important  ;)  :P



Ah, before standardising the amount of toppings, there would have to be a ten year investigation and a 5 + million euro report to inform any decision on what constitutes a 'pizza topping' and other relevant details. Other research and reporting would have to first be carried out to define which details would be relevant. Questions that would need to be considered:


Is cheese in cheese crust pizza an actual topping? Is a cheesy crust pizza considered to be an actual pizza, or some other sort of cheese-enhanced baked goods? 

Does the tomato sauce constitute a topping, or is it just taken for granted that it should be there and, if so, does it need it's own weights and measures rules regarding the amount of tomato sauce per inch wide of pizza? 

Do we need to abolish the practice of measuring pizza in inches wide, since most of Europe officially use cms?

Do we treat cheese the same as tomato? i.e. do we say that the cheese will be there anyway, so lets not count that as a 'topping'?

Does this mean that we are only talking about toppings that are additional to the cheese and tomato? Does that mean they are 'additional toppings' and the 5 million euro report will have to be re-rewritten at a cost of 3 million euros.

What about pizza that is only the base material and drizzled with olive oil and garlic?  What is a drizzle measurement? Will that 'pizza' now come with, for example 25 ml of garlic infused oil? Will the garlic have to be measured separately?

Would the Italians insist on researching / writing the report as the experts with the longest experience of pizza-making, or would they be exempt on the grounds that asking them to contribute to such an exercise would be to further stereotype a member nation and cause untold offence?

Will the standardisation apply across ALL pizza suppliers, or only those supplying frozen pizza to supermarkets? Or, will it apply to freshly made pizza only and therefore not apply at all to the supermarket ones, unless they are not frozen? 

Will the standards apply to all pizzas in all restaurants / tavola calda joints / bars/ cafes etc., or will they only apply to pizza places where their sole enterprise is pizza making?  Again, this may introduce anomalies over whether a pizza parlour becomes something different if it also sells ice cream and / or coffee etc., Will a pub selling heated-up frozen pizzas have to comply, or only if they declare on the menu that they are heating up frozen pizzas?

Will the world laugh when it's discovered later that the pizza photos were taken in a tourist restaurant in Japan?

Will there be separate rules for different types of toppings?  e.g. will we standardise on number of olives per pizza width inch (cm?) or will we weight the olives and have jars of halved /  quartered olives available to make the exact weight. Do all cheese toppings (that are 'additional toppings' to the initial dollop of cheese on the tomato sauce) have to be standard?  i.e. some cheese is much stronger than others, so would it be desirable in the first place to have all portions of cheese the same size? If so, would that size be very small to allow for only adding a small amount of strong cheese? Would an exception have to be made for mozzarella or other very mild cheeses where you would have to add several 'additional toppings' to get the desired effect?

Would there be a limit on the amount of toppings that can be applied to a pizza base before the balance of topping to base becomes inverted and the product is no longer a pizza with 'extra' toppings ('extra' would have to have a couple of chapters to define what that is) but is now an entirely different product which consists of toppings with a pizza dough style base (which would probably need a different set of standards on how thick the base should be to qualify etc.,)

Would the purchaser of the pizza (and that may have to be defined, or it may be referred to in other legal docs) be entitled to certain redress? How would they know that the pizza toppings did not conform? Is it enough to say 'It didn't taste very cheesy?' How would the amount of cheese be measured to prove it was a standard amount, once the pizza had been cooked and the cheese melted. Does this mean that the cheese must be a standard weight before cooking and also a standard melted weight? Does this mean that only certain cheeses that conform to these restrictions may be used in a 'standardised topping' pizza? 

Is it 'minimum' size of portions? Or exact standard sizes ? Some people may be upset that standard size could turn out to be much smaller than what they already get.

Should the standard size be based on recommended healthy living advice - would this mean that the healthy living advice would have to be standardised and not changed every other day when some phd student publishes his / her latest research on whether bananas are better for monkeys than humans etc.,

Will there be a category of pizza that does not need to conform because the purchaser (as defined elsewhere) wants additional toppings (defined elsewhere) and requires that the pizza is 'bespoke' and accepts all risk that there may be variations in flavour (if indeed a pizza will still be required to have any flavour) etc.,Will the report have photos as examples and, if so, will they have been licensed from a business based in an EU member state? 

Then there is the question of whether it would actually 'benefit mankind' (suppressing the need to do a 'tut-tut' there).

Will the standardisation legislation be enforceable in law or will it be more of a guideline?


I don't know the answer to any of this, but it will take a lot of very clever people a very long time to complete this list, before they actually start on the report that will take years to research and write. After several hundred million euros have been spent on the subject, legislation might slip quietly into law because only the guy who proposed it and couple of his mates turn up to vote it through, thereby allowing most of the countries in the EU to completely ignore it as they do the laws on number of people allowed on a moped and whether said moped should be driven along the pavement (define 'pavement', do the same reports and laws and then ignore those safety requirements too). 


Oh yes, I forgot, the pizza topping standardisation was just a suggestion for something else to waste time and money on, rather than the Freedom of Panorama hoo-ha. Well, you can see why 'they' (we) would rather deal with the photo issues than try to tackle pizza toppings......


Edit - yes, I know it went slightly off the original topic. I have signed the petition, by the way.

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OK, this proposal is the EU doing an initial bit of talking, but sometimes their daft ideas do become laws. If it did I can envision a few new business models arrising out of it, 1. something like the UK's music performing rights society, PRS. They have done deals with many music publishers then demand payment from any and all businesses that have any music which the public might overhear.


1. So could end up with a similar society that tries to levey a fee on anyone who has a camera (or camera phone) as they might take a photo of something which has a copyright and might post it somewhere that could have potential commercial consequences. Could be very profitable.


2. Could be an individual (or business) which decides to capitalize on something often appearing in photographs by doing image search over the net much as a photographer might do now, identify their copyrighted items and send bills. Getty has done this about photos and one sculptur in the USA did it regards their national monument and a postage stamp.


As I understand it the regulations would apply to "right to publish pictures of public buildings and artworks" so a copyright holder of say the design of a particular streetlight might well contend it would be included, but post boxes, pub signs, graffetti, ???


Could all be a legal mine field that only the well to do could negotiate.

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Just signed.....only a week to go!  Please sign!!


There is a petition going on here on Change.org

Only 3,915 needed to reach 35,000.


Wow, that is 35,000 in 3 days!


Please sign here

  • [do] Not limit the Freedom of Panorama in any way

and instead [to]

  • Bring the Freedom of Panorama to all member states of the EU


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This may be tangential, but I can report in real time,

(Madridians? Madriders? Madridites? which is it???)

are surprisingly photo-friendly & often non-reactive

to camera being pointed at them in public places!!

They'll be Madrileños  ;)



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Imagine if the ever stringent (and maybe more upcoming) laws on photography (of people & buildings) were in place from the advent of photography ?  So much of recorded history of who we are and how we have lived would simply be missing. The work of Brandt, Cartier-Bresson, Paul Martin, Kertesz etc., largely unacceptable to those in power.



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Trying to work out how to unsign. Cant find original email.


I dont really want to be bedfellows with the Pirate Party. They dont exactly have a healthy respect of IP.

The enemy of my enemy can be, if not exactly a friend, a convenient short term ally.  Once their convenience ends - well, that's another story.

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Signed days ago, also wrote to MEPs and responses were all in agreement opposing. My two UKIP just using as another reason to not be in the EU, others just opposing one saying impossible to police. If it was passed, yes it would become law in the UK. The UK would probably inforce but in a haphazard way so taking photos would be very problamatic.


Things seem to go through without notice, so Greece might take the time and effort just allowing this to slip through without thought.

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If it was passed, yes it would become law in the UK.

How would that come to pass? It contradicts s62 of the CDPA. I would expect subsidiarity to apply to this.

Even in countries without freedom of panorama it does not prevent any photography at all. It merely purports to prohibit commercial publication. Once you have the photograph which you cannot be stopped from taking the cat is out of the bag.

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