Is the Eiffel Tower Copyrighted?
Has the city of Paris really copyrighted the Eiffel Tower as it looks lit up at night, meaning that anyone (including a tourist) who takes a picture of the Eiffel Tower at night has to get permission and pay a fee before publishing that picture? As bizarre as it sounds, apparently this is true. Even if you wanted to post your holiday photos of the 'Eiffel Tower by night' on the web, you would technically have to get permission first. The Eiffel Tower itself was built in 1889, and therefore its likeness entered the public domain long ago, but the Parisian authorities sneaked around this fact by copyrighting the lights on the Tower. They did this in 2003. That's why the copyright issue only applies to the Eiffel Tower at night
. So technically it's not the tower itself that is copyrighted. It's the lights on the tower. But you can hardly photograph the tower without getting the lights. This is the kind of thing that sounds so stupid you suspect it has to be false, but David-Michel Davies who's written about this
over at FastCompany appears to have done his homework, so I'm inclined to believe him. (via J-Walk
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