Interesting article on the amateur photographer hysteria

Discussion in 'UK Photography' started by Phil Stovell, Apr 17, 2008.

  1. Phil Stovell

    Phil Stovell Guest

    Phil Stovell, Apr 17, 2008
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  2. Phil Stovell

    Trev Guest

    Read That a Few hours ago Its been happening for some years and does not get
    any better. If you travel By train you will have noticed a lack of train
    spotters at the end of Platforms these days
    Trev, Apr 17, 2008
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  3. Phil Stovell

    Ian Jackson Guest

    I note that, under 'Furtive Photographs', it says "but a police
    investigation found they had acted correctly because he appeared to be
    taking photographs covertly". As it not actually illegal to take
    photographs, how can there be a difference between 'covert' and 'overt'
    Ian Jackson, Apr 17, 2008
  4. Phil Stovell

    Paul Giverin Guest

    It also begs the question why a terrorist would draw attention to
    himself by taking covert photographs if it was perfectly legal to take
    them openly?

    Paul Giverin

    British Jet Engine Website:-

    My photos:-
    Paul Giverin, Apr 17, 2008
  5. On Thu, 17 Apr 2008, Phil Stovell wrote:


    Write to your MP to ask him/her to sign Austin Mitchells early day motion

    My MP wouldn't sign it but wrote to the minister of state at the home
    office. So at least I have a letter to carry around, from the Rt Hon Tony
    McNulty on home office stationery, that states "There is no legal
    restriction on photography in public places, and there is no presumption
    of privacy for individuals in a public place"

    Do write to your MP about the matter. The EDM now has 131 signatures, and
    looking at other EDMs, this seems to be a lot. Make it more.

    Find your MP at


    ( If replying by mail, please note that all "sardines" are canned.
    However, unless this a very old message, a "tuna" will swim right
    through. )
    Alan Clifford, Apr 17, 2008
  6. Phil Stovell

    Mike Guest

    Note also that it was a police investigation into the action of the
    police in which the police found that the police had acted correctly.
    No surprises there.
    Mike, Apr 17, 2008
  7. Actually, it would be great if you could put that letter up on a website
    somewhere for others to download. It could be really useful.
    Les Invalides, Apr 18, 2008
  8. Phil Stovell

    Mark Dunn Guest

    Ah, but the copyright in the letter belongs to the sender. So you'd need his
    Mark Dunn, Apr 18, 2008
  9. Phil Stovell

    Trev Guest

    But It may not stop the Official hounding you off the scene, He just says
    your Breaching the peace
    Trev, Apr 18, 2008
  10. Phil Stovell

    Tony Polson Guest

    No need. If ever there was such a thing as "Fair use", this is it.
    Tony Polson, Apr 18, 2008
  11. Phil Stovell

    Rob Morley Guest

    IANAL but I'm pretty sure this would be covered by the Freedom of
    Information Act.
    Rob Morley, Apr 18, 2008
  12. Phil Stovell

    Alasdair Guest

    Perhaps the best way to do it is for a photographer to apply to a
    court for an order declaring that it is legal to take photographs in a
    public place. I don't know which court one would apply to and what
    the procedure is but I suspect on seeing a court order, Plod would
    back off smartish.

    Perhaps it would be more appropriate if a photography magazine made
    the application and the judgment could be published.
    Alasdair, Apr 18, 2008
  13. Phil Stovell

    MB Guest

    Also when the court asked why you are wasting their time then you could
    reply that the police are going around saying that it is illegal to use a
    camera without a permit.

    MB, Apr 18, 2008
  14. Phil Stovell

    Mike_B Guest

    I noticed this;

    "In May last year, Thames Valley Police overturned a caution issued to
    photographer Andy Handley of the MK News in Milton Keynes, after he took
    pictures at the scene of a road accident. "

    To have overturned a caution, they must have issued one in the first
    place and the professional photographer involved must have accepted the

    One can't help wondering what the caution was, and why it was accepted.
    Mike_B, Apr 19, 2008
  15. Phil Stovell

    Gareth Guest

    In such circumstances could the official actually be guilty of breaching
    the peace?
    Gareth, Apr 19, 2008
  16. Phil Stovell

    Neil Barker Guest

    This whole issue is something that has been brewing for a long time
    now. About 8 years ago, Staffordshire Police appointed a new head
    press-officer by the name of Margaret Kirk. She visited several
    regional daily newspapers in the Staffordshire area - one of which was

    Our editor called me in for a chat with her, to tell her of some of the
    problems I had had over the years. I'd had many - mainly at RTAs being
    told that I cannot take a photo of it etc, when there is no law at all
    stopping me.

    We had a long chat and I suggested to her that I get hold the US
    National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) guidelines for
    Police/Press relations and we "English-ise" them.

    That I did and we adapted them for UK use and Staffordshire Police's
    then Chief Constable, John Giffard, endorsed them. Every serving
    Staffordshire policeman/woman was given a copy.

    Things genuinely did improve and I found much less problems at major

    It's quite ironic that these same guidelines were taken by other people
    and effectively claimed as 'their own' and submitted to the likes of
    the NUJ etc.

    Me, I'm not really bothered - I don't have any need to claim that I was
    the first to do this, I'm just happy to have done my bit.
    Neil Barker, Apr 19, 2008
  17. Thanks for that. Spoke to my MP this morning. He said he'd sign.


    [The reply-to address is valid for 30 days from this posting]
    Michael J Davis
    Some newsgroup contributors appear to have confused
    the meaning of "discussion" with "digression".
    Michael J Davis, Apr 20, 2008
  18. Phil Stovell

    Juan Kerr Guest


    We had a very nice RTA here a few months ago when I was at work, a
    stolen car swerved to avoid another vehicle and ended up upside down
    in a hedge at the end of our wife decided to take
    a few snaps but was prevented from doing so by Plod who told her
    effectively what you've said, i.e "you can't do that, it's against the

    Now my wife is naive and took Plod at face value (I'd have told him to
    go away) but it makes you think who it is exactly who's instilling
    this false information into coppers on the streets?

    Or do they make it up as they go along?
    Juan Kerr, Apr 20, 2008
  19. Phil Stovell

    Trev Guest

    Neil Was refering to Card carriying members of the press. Not Gawkers no
    Trev, Apr 20, 2008
  20. Phil Stovell

    Juan Kerr Guest

    None taken.

    But for future reference, my wife's offence was...........?
    Juan Kerr, Apr 20, 2008
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