So last night I learned some interesting things about Icon Park in Orlando FL. Now before I get started I want to be clear, this is not a post talking bad about the park itself…Icon Park is a beautiful area filled with amazing lights, fun things to do and a lot of different kinds of delicious food. What this post IS about is talking about the park’s rules and rights. Some of which I find to be very disturbing.
Last night I decided to drive out to Icon Park in Orlando FL and do some night photography. Night photography, especially after a good rain storm and some awesome lights is a favorite of mine, and I was excited to create some art. Not wanting to bother anyone I decided to drive to the top of their parking deck and use the top open-air level to shoot. When I got up there I was literally the only person up there.
Now as anyone knows, night photography requires the use of long exposures. This means you have to thumb down the shutter speeds allowing light to have a longer amount of time to get inside the camera and hit the film/sensor. When doing that the use of a tripod is highly recommended as any shake coming from holding your camera will distort the image.
Now I was using a varity of cameras while I was there. My main is a Sony a7iii with a Sigma ART 24-70mm lens. I was also shooting with a Pentax Super Program 35mm Film camera with a 70-200mm lens, an Olympus Pen EES-2, and a Kodak Ektar h35.
Now as you can see, the images turned out wonderfully, and I was VERY pleased with how they look. Because I was shooting with longer shutter speeds each image took some time to set up and after being in one spot for almost 45 minutes I decided I wanted to change locations and focus on shooting the Ferris Wheel. That is when the trouble started…
After moving, and maybe 10 minutes of time a security guard showed up and told me I had to leave because tripods were not allowed on this private property. When I asked him to show me the policy he said I could look it up online, and continued to harass me to go. I started packing up my gear and when I got into my truck I decided to look up Icon Parks Policy…
This is where I found the following two statements on their “Terms & Conditions” Page.
Large tripods and commercial-grade photography gear for purposes of commercial shooting without permission from ICON Park Media Relations.
Photography, videotaping or recording of any kind for commercial purposes.Icon Parks Terms & Conditions taken directly off their website
Now look, I have no issues with this policy. Icon Park is private property and they can restrict who photographs their property however they like. However, two things bother me here…
- I was not there photographing commercially. I was there personally to make and collect images for my personal pleasure and use. I had/have no intention of profiting from these images. The security guard did not know his own company’s rules, and since I was not commercially photographing my tripod should have been allowed. Instead, I got harrassed and thrown out.
- If you continue to read down further in Icon Parks Terms and Conditions there is a section entitled ICON Park Rights. Below I will quote the line that bothers me, but it basically says the park has the right to photograph, videotape, and reproduce anything all the way down to YOUR VOICE and profit from it without giving the individual any compensation…
We may photograph, film, videotape, record or otherwise reproduce the image and/or voice of any person who enters the ICON Park property and use the same for any purpose without payment to any person.Icon Park Terms and Conditions taken directly off their website
Can someone explain to me how this is right? Can someone make this make sense? You ban photographers and individuals from filming and videotaping your property for profit, but you can do it to anyone who enters your property? Is that not the definition of hypocritical?