I took this picture of a sculpture in Japan: GUARDIAN STONE (size reduced)

Would I violate any law if I publish this picture under Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0?
Solid references required (law/decree texts), thank you!

Just in case, for info the plaque reads: GUARDIAN STONE plaque

1 Answer 1


This is not really an "open data" question, but...

The answer is "you are not allowed to do this"; Japan does not allow commercial photography of otherwise copyrighted artistic works in public places, and the CC-BY-SA license allows commercial reuse, so the two are incompatible.

The best resource for this sort of question is the (alarmingly comprehensive) Freedom of Panorama list at Wikimedia Commons; it cites s. 46 of the Japanese copyright law. An English language version is here:

  1. With the exception of the following instances, it shall be permissible to exploit, by any means whatsoever, an artistic work permanently installed in an open place as provided for in paragraph (2) of the preceding Article and an architectural work: (...) (iv) reproduction of an artistic work exclusively for the purpose of selling its reproductions and the sale of such reproductions.

I am not sure how precise a translation this is, and if an exact translation then "exclusively" might offer a little wiggle room, but otherwise the gist seems fairly clear.

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