Photograph the Eiffel Tower and you may be breaking the law

Eiffel Tower, Paris

It’s one of the most iconic buildings in the world, photographed thousands of times a day from all angles. But did you know if you take a photo of the Eiffel Tower you could be breaking the law.

Why you ask? It’s because the light show which illuminates the Eiffel Tower at night time is actually under copyright meaning those taking photos of the structure after dark are breaking the law and could technically be prosecuted.

According to the Eiffel Tower website:

The Eiffel Tower, built in 1889, falls within the public domain.

Daytime views from the Eiffel Tower are rights-free.

However, its various illuminations are subject to author’s rights as well as brand rights. Professional or commercial use of these images is subject to prior request from the “Société d’Exploitation de la Tour Eiffel” (the Eiffel Tower’s operating company, or SETE).

So with that logic, it’s actually, technically illegal to share photos of the illuminated Eiffel Tower on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram Flickr and other social media platforms.

Whilst it doesn’t seem you will go to jail any time soon, you may get fined for snapping and sharing your image of the Eiffel Tower. So be warned…

The Eiffel Tower is the tallest structure in Paris and the most-visited paid monument in the world. It was named after the engineer Gustav Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower in 1889 as the entrance arch to the 1889 World’s Fair.

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