This website is an archive of the work of Marietje Schaake in the European Parliament between 2009 and 2019. Marietje can be reached at

Safeguarding the freedom of panorama

The freedom of panorama allows people to share or post photographs or videos of works, such as works of architecture or sculpture, that are located in public places. Currently this freedom already exists in many – but not all – member states of the EU. In countries without such an exception to copyright, the situation arises that people cannot legally spread pictures for instance of the Atomium in Brussels, or the Eiffel Tower (by night) in Paris. On June 16, the Legal Affairs committee in the European Parliament adopted a draft report on copyright in the digital age. It evaluates the current legal framework of 2001, and makes recommendations ahead of the copyright reform that the Commission will propose later this year. In this report it now states that “the commercial use of photographs, video footage or other images of works which are permanently located in physical public places should always be subject to prior authorisation from the authors or any proxy acting for them” (article 46). In order to ensure people can take pictures in public places, and not have to worry to upload their holiday pictures of a statue or monument on to social media, I proposed the following amendment to the report: Recognises the right to use photographs, video footage or other images of works which are permanently located in public places. With enough support in Parliament, this clarification will be voted on in the next plenary meeting of July 9 along with the full copyright report. See also on copyright: 05-03-2014 MEP: High time for modern European copyright laws 05-12-2012 Marietje Schaake welcomes steps towards long overdue EU copyright reform 04-12-2012 Letter to President Barroso on the need for copyright reform 06-12-2010 Parliamentary Question: Flexible exceptions and limitations to copyright in Europe freedom-panorama-copyright