The legalities of taking photos of other peoples houses


What’s the legality’s with this one? If the owner of the house seen the pic on here (very unlikely I know) where would the picture taker stand.

2018 Winter Treasure Hunt Challenge

Who would ever own up to owning such a house! :stuck_out_tongue:


@GrahameRob I’ll pull your question out in to a new thread shortly if you don’t mind mate, the ensuing discussion will pull our Challenge thread way off topic :blush:


Where would the picture taker stand?

Not far from where he took off I’d say :rofl:


To add to the discussion we should also consider the Google Street View scenario here too… satellite photos, etc.

They all fall in to the same category, taking photographs of other people’s private property, which is in public view.


In the presence of a judge perhaps :thinking::roll_eyes:


When it comes to property thats what the 50m rule is for.

It’s when people are also in the photo that things become a problem.

It’s one thing capturing people in front of buildings but back gardens etc where they would expect privacy so a no no.

But decorations on a house is absolutely fine.


(FYI, I feel the drone side of this is somewhat irrelevant, it’s just an airbourne camera in this scenario)

I’d suggest that taking a photograph of anything in a public place makes it your photograph to do with as you please.

For example, I couldn’t stop someone taking a photo of my car parked out side my house. I couldn’t stop them taking a photo of my house for that matter either.

Sure, I’d probably march out there and ask them WTF they thought they were doing but legally I’d not have a leg to stand on.

A few quotes from :

Property owners have no right to stop people taking photos of their buildings, so long as the photographer is standing in a public place (e.g. the road outside).

It is also not an infringement of copyright to “take photographs of buildings, sculptures and works of artistic craftsmanship that are permanently situated in a public place or in premises that are open to the public”. [source]

Another very interesting read from is this PDF below. It could also be a useful document to carry with you :thinking: (pinging @chrisjohnbaker for thoughts on this)

The guide was written by Linda Macpherson, a freelance legal consultant specialising in Media Law and Intellectual Property Law:

Callum’s advice is sound too, I’d avoid photographing said homeowners sunbathing in their back gardens for example (although not likely at this time of year).

I’m pretty sure the most common of all drone rules also applies here though:

Don’t be a dick :+1:t2:


Also pinging @ianinlondon for his thoughts on this subject in general?

(potential for another informative YouTube video mate?)


Sounds as if we should add this document to the GADC Information Pack @callum
Always handy to update the Members to any New Documents, feel free to update as you see fit.
Thanks for the heads up Rich.
And Happy Christmas To All at GADC !!


Fully agree with the comments above. Public views from vantage points in public places are absolutely fine and cannot be restricted by the land or home owner. Only the 50m bubble rule comes into play, although the 150m lateral rule will also play if it’s a town. Article 95 (Small Unmanned Surveillance Aircraft) of the Specific Regulations Relating to Drones covers this element of privacy issues.

I did make a video on the rules for flying, covering both airpsace and ground-based rules…
Cheers, Ian


@callum, can you please add the above Document to the GADC Information Pack ,please.
I am sure it will be of use to someone out in droneland.


I’ll add it later when I’m home


Thanks Callum