You haven’t misread any word, that’s right. Unlike in almost every place in the world, where you can take a picture of what’s on your dish if you will, there is a place where taking a photograph of your meal may end up with you behind bars. You may think it’s a faraway place, where many restrictions are applicable – yet it’s in one of Europe’s most advanced places.
Germany has indeed forbidden to take photographs of your meal, say, when you’re at a restaurant, and upload them on social media. Instagram’s going to have a tough time thanks to this, since food pictures are one of the network’s most recognizable things, which have nearly become a distinctive brand. Many places have benefited from this practice, since when food is promoted by someone, more people come to the place where the dish came from.
Why has German federal government banned such a practice? It has been taken into effect because taking a picture of a dish, then sharing it, could be considered a copyright violation. “An elaborately made dish, created in a restaurant, can be considered as a piece of work and be protected as such,” a lawyer said. “The dish’s creator has the right to decide where and how they want their work to be reproduced.
However, no fees have been applied yet. The measure was adopted in 2013, but it has not made anyone pay astonishing amounts to any restaurant. It has only made it to international media recently. Some have asked if taking a picture of a fast-food dish would be a crime – and German justice has answered – no, it wouldn’t. It only affects elaborated dishes, not homemade ones or plain fast food.
So, if you go to Germany and want to share that schnitzel or Sachertorte with your followers, think it twice. Fees aren’t a piece of cake!