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Copyrighting The Church

Now here’s an interesting intersection of religion and technology.

The Church of England is demanding Sony remove a new game from the shelves because one of the locations pictured is Manchester Cathedral, a property owned by the Church.

Sony says they received “all permissions necessary” to use the images while Church officials say they didn’t and are threatening legal action if they company doesn’t comply with their demands.

While this is certainly an example of poor taste on the part of the game designers, does the Church have a case?

I have no idea whether British law covers this kind of thing, but I think in the US it is possible to obtain copyright or trademark protection for buildings. Haven’t the owners of the Chrysler Building in New York and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water, among others, done just that?

Nothing profound to say here (as if I ever do). Just one of those stories that grabs the attention.

church of england, sony, video game, manchester cathedral

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1 Comment

  1. Sorry – you’ve partly got the wrong end of the stick.

    The legal aspect is mainly about filming in somebody else’s building not copyright on the building itself.

    Anyone can take pictures from the outside as it is a public space.

    You could *possibly* trademark a distinctive drawing of a buidling, but I don’t think they have in this case.

    The stuff about glorifying gun violence is more interesting, as this a problem the Cathedral Community is deeply involved in addressing.

    Cheers

    Matt

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