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Thread: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

  1. #1
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    Default Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    I'm thinking about use for travel websites/brochures.

    For e.g. we know the image of the merlion is copyrighted (unless there are other things in the image to impress that the "scene", not the the merlion itself, is the point of the image). I suppose images of MBS is copyrighted from commercial use as well.

    Let's throw in variations - statue of Stamford Raffles with the Victoria Concert Hall behind it? I'm not even sure if either one is copyrighted - would be grateful if anyone can enlighten me where or how to check.

    Picture of Mandai Zoo entrance. Universal Studios entrance. Image of SAM. Cable car running to Sentosa. Singapore Flyer. Exterior shot of Sports Hub. All not allowed?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Call them and find out?

    Regards,

    Hart

  3. #3
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Quote Originally Posted by aywy-s View Post
    I'm thinking about use for travel websites/brochures.

    For e.g. we know the image of the merlion is copyrighted (unless there are other things in the image to impress that the "scene", not the the merlion itself, is the point of the image). I suppose images of MBS is copyrighted from commercial use as well.

    Let's throw in variations - statue of Stamford Raffles with the Victoria Concert Hall behind it? I'm not even sure if either one is copyrighted - would be grateful if anyone can enlighten me where or how to check.

    Picture of Mandai Zoo entrance. Universal Studios entrance. Image of SAM. Cable car running to Sentosa. Singapore Flyer. Exterior shot of Sports Hub. All not allowed?
    Such images are safe for editorial usage, but can they classify your travel websites/brochures as editorial articles?
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Does this means that a painter cannot paint a merlion and sell that painting? Likewise for MBS?

    All those merlion tinkets and keychains and t-shirts at tourists spot, all got pay royalties? Post cards with MBS in the shot... same?
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Quote Originally Posted by sjackal View Post
    Does this means that a painter cannot paint a merlion and sell that painting? Likewise for MBS?

    All those merlion tinkets and keychains and t-shirts at tourists spot, all got pay royalties? Post cards with MBS in the shot... same?
    There's blanket approval (no application needed) given for souvenirs. For photos, similar approval is given if it does not "represent or cause perception of association with, endorsement by or promotion of any commercial product or event", so I think postcards/paintings are fine.

    For other use cases need to apply I think.

    Details from the STB site: https://www.stb.gov.sg/assistance-an...on-Symbol.aspx



    @TS, Agetan mentioned the obvious already. Contact them lah For commercial establishments, quite easy to find their contact details. In the case of seemingly public stuff like the statute with no clear owners, can try to check with stat boards like NHB, if not within their purview, hopefully they can redirect you.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Wonder if the POSB Everyday card which included MBS building, they got pay for licence? Or its more like a representation of Singapore financial district.

    Also, if you contact the commercial establishment, being commercial, they would definitely say yes give me the money, which, you may not always necessary need to.
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  7. #7
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Quote Originally Posted by sjackal View Post
    Wonder if the POSB Everyday card which included MBS building, they got pay for licence? Or its more like a representation of Singapore financial district.

    Also, if you contact the commercial establishment, being commercial, they would definitely say yes give me the money, which, you may not always necessary need to.

    The POSB Everyday Card using a skyline of Marina Bay, the MBS is only part of the whole skyline, not the main subject, you can find such images listed as rights managed or royalty free stock images in reputable stock photos agencies.
    From what I know, if MBS is a main subject in the photos, noway that any stock agencies will accept it as rights managed or royalty free stock images, it only can be listed as editorial images. Stock agencies won't to play play because MBS is very particular about this.

    it is better to play safe,
    Last edited by catchlights; 25th March 2015 at 08:57 AM.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    Thank you for the info Mr Catchlights.
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  9. #9

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    If the property ha a unique look, and you want to use that for a commercial purpose you can run into the issue of property release. Unauthorized uses of images of said property could have legal repercussions.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    If you are doing commercial shoot, bring up the issue during the negotiation and have the client pay for the release fees.

    Inside your contract with the client, have an clause to indemify yourself against such claims and have the commissioner of the project to be responsible instead, you are only an executer of the project, especially when you are signing away copyrights. Client making big bucks with your photo, but you bare the legal responsible for sues? Doesnt make sense right?

    If you are shooting for stock, dont bother and waste your time over that few dollars. Move on to the next subject.

    Dont be a goon like many amatuers wannabes.

  11. #11
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Copyright on tourist spots? (commercial use for travel)

    if shooting for stock, photographers need to bear all the expenses to execute the shoot first, short list, post process, add keyword and description, than upload to agencies,
    the agencies may reject the uploads base on many reasons, eg not stock worthy, technical issue, legal issue etc.
    even the images can get accepted, there is no guarantee the photos will sell, and for those subjects you can only upload as editorial stock photos, it is not as sellable as those non editorial stock photos due to extremely low demand.
    take Skyline of Marina Bay for an example, there are so many well executed photos out there, but only a few are really sellable, for those photos able to make a couple of downloads, it is not enough for the photographers to buy two cups of latte. (One popular stock agency is pay US$0.25 royalty for a download, and that is before tax, local photographers need to pay 30% tax to US IRS)
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