Visitors to the newly-opened Hudson Yards, which is the largest private real estate development in the US, features a giant structure called Vessel. The 16-storey building is open to the public – but by visiting, you agree to hand over the copyright of any photos taken while there, and in doing so permit the company to use the images royalty-free worldwide.
Vessel is to be a permanent art installation within the new estate. With 154 flights of stairs, it offers the public great views of the city.
PetaPixel reports that eagle-eyed visitors to the new landmark noticed a clause written within the terms and conditions, which you allegedly have no choice but to agree to by obtaining a ticket. Under a section entitled "My Content" any photographs taken at the site are bound by "unrestrictedl" licensing by the company. The full text reads:
If I create, upload, post or send any photographs, audio recordings, or video footage depicting or relating to the Vessel. I grant to Company and its affiliates the irrevocable, unrestricted, worldwide, perpetual, royalty-free, sublicensable, and transferable right and license to use, display, reproduce, perform, modify, transmit, publish, and distribute such photographs, audio recordings, or video footage for any purpose whatsoever in any and all media (in either case, now known or developed later).
Naturally, many of those flocking to the Vessel to take skyline pictures are perhaps unknowingly allowing the company to use their photo for any purpose they see fit, without having to ask permission. What’s more, anyone taking a photograph is forbidden to use it for any commercial purposes, without the right permission from the company.
Are the owners within their right to do this, or are photographers being shamelessly exploited here?