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Arrested (well nearly)

sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 1:23AM
I am extremely angry at the treatment of photographers these days due to suspicion and , yes, certain photographers who have comitted offences.I was once again accosted by a uniformed official when I was honestly just taking pictures of seagulls at the beach! Once before the police questioned me in a Mall , yes I do know malls are private property. I also do know the rules of photography in Australia and South Africa. I am an extremely considerate photographer and have sometimes destroyed very good images if the person was unhappy with them, I always ask permission and get model consent forms mostly. ( even the seagullsSmile .It is highly embarrassing to be accosted like this. Why must people insist on calling the officials on their mobiles and not just politely say they don't want their pictures taken. Apparantly I must get "press accreditation" , how the hell do I do that? What about the brilliant photographers who don't have press accreditation?
Photographers document History and play a hugely important role in art and society. I am just about ready to pack my bags and go home and find some seagulls who are just friendly and only too happy to have their pictures taken and not think I am a pervert!!!!

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Carabosse 15 41.1k 270 England
21 Apr 2007 1:42AM
Get one of those devices which allow you to shoot at 90 degrees to the subject! Wink

I have often pointed my camera at people and places. Never once been approached by uniformed busybodies: feel quite disappointed in a way!

There may, sadly, be a sexist/size-ist element to this. A 6'2", 15st male is probably less likely to be approached by a jobsworth than a modestly proportioned woman.......?
sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 2:02AM
Yes, I actually feel so sorry for the blokes. I saw a guy been questioned the other day by the police and I knew he was a decent fellow, I actually spoke out for him. I just hate having to sneak around taking shots too, then I do feel as if I am a suspicious characterSmile It is incredibly strict here in Queensland. I never ever had the problem in Africa and there is probably much more opportunity to abuse the rights of subjects over there. Its frustrating as I am a people photographer, I can't just suddenly change to landscapes etc...thanks
Carabosse 15 41.1k 270 England
21 Apr 2007 2:07AM
Well you need to know the local laws. It can't be assumed that they are the same worldwide.

We are relatively fortunate in the UK.
afunkyname 11 354
21 Apr 2007 2:18AM
what a load of paranoid bankers with a W. bloody jobsworth security guards, bane of my life.

a police woman once told me not to photograph parliament because it's a security risk. i said bull ****, if i were a terrorist:

a: i would not have such a large tripod mounted conspicuous camera that drew attention to my self from a mile off

b: if i wanted to do a guy fawkes, i wouldn't have to take pictures, theres enough postcards, posters, maps, gps etc for me to find it.

needless to say... the cow shut her mouth.
sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 2:27AM
I DO know the laws. I made sure of that, I just think its real sad that people make assumptions and it is ignorance. I quoted the laws to the official and he had no idea of them!
My lens is so small anyway, I cannot do close ups..even of seagullsSmile Thanks chaps, if anyone knows how I could get press accrediatation that would be helpful, freelance I guess. I have got a media pass before to the Woodford Music Festical. They were great!
Carabosse 15 41.1k 270 England
21 Apr 2007 2:30AM
We should all do our bit to challenge non-existent laws which are only in the minds of the jobsworths.

Ask them to quote "chapter and verse" of the primary legislation or bye-laws upon which they rely. You'll get a blank look in 99%+ of instances! Wink
sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 2:39AM
Ha, great I will try that, ta! I am determined to get a shot of Pauline Hanson who is moving to this area, no doubt I will be arrested!! Oh well, maybe it will be good for my resume...Smile
joecool 12 350 United States
21 Apr 2007 4:14AM
I have to say i feel the same "pervert" response from the public. It seems like US government with all it's BS really does a "great" job with infiltrating sheep-minded people and spreading this crap world-wide - welcome to the global nation driven by fear and terrorist on every corner with cameras.

What the f**k is going on with the society, some little brains are so intoxicated with the BS from TV and other forms of media that they are loosing grip with common sense and every time they see something they don't comprehend or heard about on TV that it's "security issue" etc. - a RED light starts flashing in their minds - terrorists/danger/report/alert/call police -

This effect seems to be multiplied when the individual is wearing a uniform with a complex of feeling important. Their common sense and connection to reality drops to zero...
sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 4:38AM
I think that is true but I come from South Africa where there is much more of a "security risk" and it is not nearly as paranoid there. The people are friendly and normally only to happy to get their pictures taken. It actually is making me afraid to take photographs and I really find it stifiling. I do understand peoples fears but when it gets out of hand it becomes a witch hunt against photographers. I am only in Australia for two years and I would love to make the most of it as it is a wonderful country and some very wonderful faces and people. I will be moving on to New Zealand after my studies finish here and I hope to settle there, or perhaps I will go back to Africa, who knows..somewhere where I can take pictures because that is all I want to do...
nickp 13 491 Scotland
21 Apr 2007 8:01AM
This webpage might give you a start point for challenging folk who reckon you shouldn't take a photograph. Especially "There is no right to not have your photograph taken".

(This link refers specifically to New South Wales in Australia - your mileage may very)
sugarbird 14 223 South Africa
21 Apr 2007 8:31AM
Thanks Nick I will take a look.
raziel_uk 14 4.9k
21 Apr 2007 9:51AM
I'm rather saddened by afunkyname's response to the policewoman. She might have been in the wrong but there was no need for being abusive.

Maybe if she had have arrested you for verbal abuse or at least obstructing a public highway - which you must have been doing if you had "such a large tripod mounted conspicuous camera that drew attention to my self from a mile off" then perhaps you might refrain from being so rude in future.

Just because people don't agree with a rule or know the other person is wrong doesn't give anyone the right to be abusive.
steve neil 13 597 Australia
21 Apr 2007 10:18AM
Hey Jill - sorry to hear that. You sound a bit frustrated but I would say this is because mostly your previous SA shots are of people you knew. Now that you have moved you don't have that luxury and thus must either find other means to get those type of shots or try something different!

I would look on the positive side of things and take it as a challenge. After all, a good photographer is one who can adapt to any situation they are in Smile Shooting in Malls is probably just as difficult in any country and not just Oz.
Nic_WA 13 179 2 Australia
21 Apr 2007 10:56AM
You're going to have to move to Denmark, WA to do your portraits, Jill Smile
Any idea when you might venture back West?

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