Germany: Does The GDPR Also Apply To Photographs And Films?

Since May 25, 2018 at the latest, the question has arisen as to whether the new data protection provisions must be observed for a wide variety of digital applications/processes. The new data protection provisions from the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the new German Federal Data Protection Act must always be observed when personal data is processed in non-private areas.

Processing of personal data

Photos (and films) may also contain personal data. On the one hand, the facial image is a personal datum, on the other hand, additional data such as location and time of image capture or other GPS information are frequently stored as metadata for the individual digital photos. High-resolution recordings in HD quality often also enable biometric recognition of the persons depicted. These cases are even considered particularly protected sensitive personal data (Art. 9 GDPR).

Legal basis for data processing

Any processing of personal data must be done lawfully, meaning that there must be a legal basis in accordance with Art. 6 GDPR. In this context, however, the legitimate question arises as to what role the German Act on Copyright in Works of the Fine Arts and in Photography (also referred to as the Art Copyright Act “Kunsturhebergesetz”) continues to play. Will the Art Copyright Act become meaningless because of the GDPR? Or do the provisions of the Art Copyright Act apply to photographs as the more specific provisions? ..Read More..

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