Your Right to Photograph

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by Dave410, Aug 14, 2014.

  1. Thanks for info,it clarifies many questions I get from time to time and and now I have a source of truths in our rights as photographers .
  2. You clearly have the right.
    However, asserting that right may still get you into trouble. for just the most recent example in Missouri.
  3. I suspect more than a few law enforcement officers are going to have some problems in the aftermath of Ferguson. Some other city employees as well. I realized long ago that nearly all officers are trained and capable of kicking my butt or worse. I have had to ask myself how hard I want to press my position at times. I've had very few confrontations with LEO's in my work and always tried not get in their way but what has gone on here even in light of the situation hopefully will have some consequences.
    Rick H.
  4. We all know that someone can be jacked up at any time by cops, that they are empowered by the US Supreme Court to lie to you, and how discretion is sometimes the better part of valor.

    But it's still important to know your rights. There may come a time when recording what's happening outweighs the threat of arrest or worse. You should know that you have the right to photograph anything in public view from public property, that police are always fair game when at work, and not to be deterred by their lies, unlawful orders, and misunderstanding or simple ignorance of the law. Someone's life may depend on it.
  5. Thanks for the link. I appreciate it's clear, no nonsense articulation of rights.
    A couple of notes:
    1. Some states and municipalities have different, sometimes more restrictive rules. For instance, after 9/11 New Jersey passed a law that makes it illegal to take photos from a bridge. Be aware of local restrictions.
    2. This article covers the USA only. Laws abroad can vary significantly. I believe that Hungary recently passed some very restrictive laws about photographing people in public, for instance.
    3. If you're calm and forthright with police officers, they appreciate it. They're just doing their job, and if you can assure them that you're not a threat and not trying to be uncooperative, they'll usually let you do yours. I'm rarely questioned by police, but when I am, they usually let me get back to my shooting once I explain what I'm doing. By contrast, arguing with police officers, disobeying their commands, or making a fuss about your "rights" usually doesn't result in a positive outcome.
    4. Private security guards are a different matter altogether. Expect some misunderstandings and some resistance.

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