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Skills Rethink director Shagufta Nasreen celebrates the Freedom of Panorama vote

PUBLISHED: 09:36 15 July 2015

Archant

Sharing photographs of a historical or architectural values, taken from the public grounds are both, an exciting hobby and a job for many of us.

I have personally taken many pictures of architectural landmarks to share with others, but it could all have been a thing of the past if a bill that was presented in the European parliament to abolish our right to take pictures from the public grounds and to share them with others, was successful.

On July 9, Julia Reda, a member of the European Parliament, tried to bring the Freedom of Panorama to all countries in EU, as few countries like France and Italy don’t have such law yet. In the majority of countries such as the UK, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, and other EU countries you’re safe to take and publish photos of public buildings when taken from the public grounds, to be enjoyed and admired by the public.

However, MEP Jean Marie Cavada, proposed an amendment to the bill to restrict the Freedom of Panorama to all EU countries, which meant, no picture of any architectural value could be shared even on the social media without the permission of its architect, which we all know is not only difficult but impossible, in many cases.

Thankfully after strong outcry from the public and in response to receiving petitions against the bill from many organisations including Change.org, the proposer of the restriction clause to the Freedom of Panorama bill MEP Jean -Marie Cavada changed his mind and asked MEPs to vote against his own amendment!

The European Commission also made a clear statement, stating that they, “ don’t intend to restrict the Freedom of Panorama, and what you can see with your eyes as a citizen, on public places and streets in Europe, you should be allowed to also photograph it with a camera.”

This is a clear victory for thousands of concerned EU citizens, who took an effort to write to their MEPs and also signed numerous petitions to stop another cut on our freedom of expression, and together we have won it!


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