"Literally every day, someone is being arrested for doing nothing more than taking a photograph in a public place"
August 14, 2012 | Source: Monroe Gallery of Photography
Today's must read, via The New York Times Lens Blog
Mickey H. Osterreicher is the general counsel for the National Press Photographers Association and edits the organizationâs Advocacy Committee blog. He spoke with James Estrin. Their conversation has been edited.
"Itâs not just news photographers who should be concerned with this. I think every citizen should be concerned. Tourists taking pictures are being told by police, security guards and sometimes other citizens, âSorry, you canât take a picture here.â When asked why, they say, âWell, donât you remember 9/11?â
I remember it quite well, but what does that have do to with taking a picture in public? It seems like the war on terrorism has somehow morphed into an assault on photography.
Q.Whatâs caused this?
A. Itâs been a perfect storm. Thereâs 9/11, and now photojournalists who traditionally worked for newspapers are losing their jobs and becoming freelancers who may not have the backing of their news organizations. You have Occupy Wall Street, where police didnât want some of their actions to be photographed. And now everybody with a cellphone is capable of recording very high-quality images. And everyone has the ability to upload and share them almost instantly. There is no news cycle â itâs 24/7 with unlimited bandwidth."
A Lens blog guide to knowing oneâs rights of photography.
Why Is It So Hard to Get Press Credentials?
New York Times photographer arrested while covering arrest
Photographer's Rights: NYPD's Backwards Policy on Photography at Occupy Wall Street
NYPD 'consistently violated basic rights' during Occupy protests â Report by NYU and Fordham law schools
âThat the First Amendment right to gather news is . . . not one that inures solely to the benefit of the news media; rather, the publicâs right of access to information is coextensive with that of the press"
Tracking Journalist Arrests at Occupy Protests Around the Country, Part Two
"You got that credential youâre wearing from us, and we can take it away from you.â