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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There is a large company who is leasing space to whom ever would like to use it. Thus my company has moved our office into this leased space. A much nicer facility than where we were at. The building we are in and the entire rest of the facility is owned by a publicly traded well known company. The buiding is also a beautiful example of Prairie School Architecture. When you think of Prairie School architecture think Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright and William L. Steele. Wright and Steele studied under Sullivan who was the father of Prairie School architecture.

I am an amateaur historian. I love to research historical sites, photograph the site and post about it on my blog. I have been doing extensive research into Prairie School architecture. The reason is in Sioux City we have several buildings designed by William L. Steele.

The building I work in is about 10 years old and yet was designed in Prairie School style. I have asked for and received permission to photograph and do a write up about the building. But there is a catch. I have to send what ever I am going to write up to the PR department of the company who owns the building for their approval before I publish it on my blog. This company is very worried about negative publicity. If I gave you the name all you would have to do is Google it and you'd see what I meant.

I am going to be objective and factual about what I write and post. There will be no subjectivity or bias, one way or another. I will leave that for whom ever comments on the blog post.

Here is my concern. Is this a violation of my 1st Amendment Rights? I feel as if this company is restricting what I may potentially write about the building. Sure it is their building but why restrict someone from saying what they want about it or the company who owns it? What do you think?

I do know this what ever I write about it this company is not going to be allowed to use what I write with out my permission for any purpose. Before I publish it I will have an agreement from them on that. Knowing their this company and their PR dept. they will spin and use it to their advantage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It was my understanding that the 1st Amendment protected against anyone from violating anyone else's Freedom of Speech Rights. That said the 1st Amendment is not an absolute.

I am going to write what I normally would even if an approval was not needed to publish it to my blog. I am not going to change or alter it in any way. In fact I have already started writting it.
 

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I'm with Dean I think they have a right to refuse the wording of your article. It's the reason legal terms like "Slander" exist.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm with Dean I think they have a right to refuse the wording of your article. It's the reason legal terms like "Slander" exist.
I'm not going to slander anyone or anything. That is not the purpose of my History and Culture blog. It will contain facts and truthful statements.

But even if I were to cast this company in a negative light, it would be with the truth and with facts. It is after all MY blog. There is nothing to prevent me from writting what I want to write and click the publish button.
 

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I'm with Dean I think they have a right to refuse the wording of your article. It's the reason legal terms like "Slander" exist.
Actually, it would be libel, not slander. And the defamation component would probably not be present in his comments.

That said, I'm quite comfortable stating that the OP has abused his right to free speech in the past. Bloggers enjoy quite a bit of legal protection, allowing them to voice their opinions as they wish, usually with a certain degree of anonymity. What some of them fail to take into consideration is that there are consequences far worse than legal action.
 

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Just write about the building make no mention of the company. And when you take your pictures either avoid any pictures of the companies name or blur the name out in the pictures. That way they can't do anything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just write about the building make no mention of the company. And when you take your pictures either avoid any pictures of the companies name or blur the name out in the pictures. That way they can't do anything.
Easier siad than done. Part of the point of posting about the building is to includes it's name and part of the company's history.

For the record, I don't work for the company who owns the building. My company is leasing space for our use.
 

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Why did you ask for permission in the first place? Maybe I don't understand the situation but it seems like you've created this problem by asking about it rather than just doing it.

I am not a lawyer but unless you are revealing classified/privileged information or the building does/houses something that you could be creating a security risk by writing and photographing it I don't understand the need for permission to write something on your own blog?
 

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Why did you ask for permission in the first place? Maybe I don't understand the situation but it seems like you've created this problem by asking about it rather than just doing it.

I am not a lawyer but unless you are revealing classified/privileged information or the building does/houses something that you could be creating a security risk by writing and photographing it I don't understand the need for permission to write something on your own blog?
Because he's exercised poor judgment in the past.
 

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The building I work in is about 10 years old and yet was designed in Prairie School style. I have asked for and received permission to photograph and do a write up about the building. But there is a catch. I have to send what ever I am going to write up to the PR department of the company who owns the building for their approval before I publish it on my blog. This company is very worried about negative publicity. If I gave you the name all you would have to do is Google it and you'd see what I meant.
I assume that you asked permission to photograph and write up the building to gain access to areas that you do not normally have, otherwise why ask? If that's the case, you may have entered into a contractual agreement with the owner. If you agreed to let them read and edit your article before it's posted on your blog, then you are probably going to be bound by that agreement. I would consult with an attorney to find out if your agreement is a binding contract. I some states, even a verbal agreement is binding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Why did you ask for permission in the first place? Maybe I don't understand the situation but it seems like you've created this problem by asking about it rather than just doing it.

I am not a lawyer but unless you are revealing classified/privileged information or the building does/houses something that you could be creating a security risk by writing and photographing it I don't understand the need for permission to write something on your own blog?
First, the building on private property with no public roadway closley bordering it that would allow me to take decent photo's. The law and common courtesy says if you you need permission to take photo's when on private property. From a public roadway I would not worry about it and take as many photo's as I want.

Second, to confirm the buildign is indeed Prairie School style I discussed it with the facilties manager. I figured he would know. When I mentioned what I want to do he advised me I need to run it my the PR dept.

I stated too bad there is no public roadway close enough to take photo's from so I would not need permission. To which the facilities mgr. agrees with me. He does not like it anymore than I do that permission needs to be granted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I assume that you asked permission to photograph and write up the building to gain access to areas that you do not normally have, otherwise why ask? If that's the case, you may have entered into a contractual agreement with the owner. If you agreed to let them read and edit your article before it's posted on your blog, then you are probably going to be bound by that agreement. I would consult with an attorney to find out if your agreement is a binding contract. I some states, even a verbal agreement is binding.
I can only take photo's of the outside of the building. I do not want photo's of the inside anyway. It looks like any other office building I have ever worked in and there is nothing that special about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Because he's exercised poor judgment in the past.
What happened in the past and what I might have posted on my blog has no bearing in this situation. Even IF it did no one at the building I work in has any idea about it. Even IF they did, so what?

This situation is because I am on private property with permission to take photo's of the facility.
 

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I can only take photo's of the outside of the building. I do not want photo's of the inside anyway. It looks like any other office building I have ever worked in and there is nothing that special about it.
I didn't say anything about the inside or outside of the building, just that you apparently had to gain legal access to shoot photos by agreeing to certain terms--at least that was my understanding. If so, you may have contractual obligations with regard to the use of the photos or other information that the company allowed you access to.

In any case, it certainly doesn't seem like the company has violated your 1st amendment rights if that's even possible. I'm pretty sure that the 1st amendment only applies to the government.
 
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