Saturday, February 12, 2005

Millennium Park Photographing Update

Ben Joravsky published a piece in yesterday's Chicago Reader following up on his story earlier this month that discussed the harassment of professional photographers and journalists at Chicago's Millennium Park.

As I recounted in an earlier post, individuals assumed to be professional photographers were accosted by park security guards and asked to purchase permits in order to shoot photos. A representative from the park indicated that the sculptures, installations, and architecture were copyrighted and required either a city permit or authorization from the creator before they could be photographed or reproduced.

According to Joravsky's followup article, the creators of the park's "enhancements" own the copyrights, but they are not paid royalties when permits are purchased. The real reason for the city's shakedown is that the city has exclusive licensing rights for selling images of Millennium Park.

Apparently, the city does not want to endure competition from entrepreneurs who may go and photograph Millennium Park enhancements and place the images on postcards, t-shirts, etc... Some use of public space, huh? has scanned in Joravsky's latest article. The relevant post's permalink seems to be malfunctioning, so you may have to go to their main page to get to the Feb. 10,2005 posting with the article.