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06-30-2009, 10:22 AM   #1
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filming people

There have been several times when I see an interesting person and want to take some photographs of them but I don't because I am uncertain if it is appropriate to do this without their permission and I don't want them to pose because I like the candid photos better. If I do get a picture and put the photo in a gallery such as the one here or with flickr do I need their permission? Thanks!

06-30-2009, 10:34 AM   #2
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The first thing you need to check is your local laws
here in NYC it is totally legal to take pictures of anyone in city property , and NYrkers usually like /used to being photographed

In different places there are different laws and different norms .

so, if its league in your area that is the # one step, the rest is all about getting confidence , learning how to communicate with ppl .

there are a lot of different ways and tricks that different photographers have .

some likes big zoom lenses (makes them look professional ?)
some likes small wide primes ( to be district ?)
some likes to dress up with a photographer vest (again to look professional)
some will tell you its better to mingle in the crowd and look like part of the scene

bottom line you need to try it out for your self

but again first of all make sure that the law is on your side
06-30-2009, 01:49 PM   #3
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It's always better to ask

I used to have to photograph buildings as a loss control inspector and I went into some really bad neighborhoods. Quite often, there were people hanging around outside the buildings and, (just speculating, but I think I was right) more than a few were wanted by the police. These people do not want their pictures taken. As a rule- Do not photograph any rough characters without letting them know first. You could get hurt, or your camera could get smashed to pieces. I was threatened with both before I learned to give them an option. Most of them ran away when they found out that I had to take a picture of the building they were near.
06-30-2009, 01:59 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by swamp bug 17 Quote
I used to have to photograph buildings as a loss control inspector and I went into some really bad neighborhoods. Quite often, there were people hanging around outside the buildings and, (just speculating, but I think I was right) more than a few were wanted by the police. These people do not want their pictures taken. As a rule- Do not photograph any rough characters without letting them know first. You could get hurt, or your camera could get smashed to pieces. I was threatened with both before I learned to give them an option. Most of them ran away when they found out that I had to take a picture of the building they were near.
common sense is your number one friend when shooting street in many case girls get better shots in thee situations

now think about photojournalist in the tribe area of Afghanistan surrounded by Taliban gunmen

07-01-2009, 07:56 PM   #5
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I shoot first, ask questions later.

Seriously, it takes common sense. If I think I am going to get hurt, I don't take the shot.

Sometimes I will ask first. But then, by asking I might lose the shot I wanted.

I also travel light in case I need to run.
07-01-2009, 08:45 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by KungPOW Quote
I shoot first, ask questions later.

...

I also travel light in case I need to run.
Training helps a lot, but might be a good ideea to have a friend on the driver's seat, with the engine running.
07-02-2009, 05:14 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ccat Quote
There have been several times when I see an interesting person and want to take some photographs of them but I don't because I am uncertain if it is appropriate to do this without their permission and I don't want them to pose because I like the candid photos better. If I do get a picture and put the photo in a gallery such as the one here or with flickr do I need their permission? Thanks!
In general you can take photographs of persons in public places. On private property (like inside railway stations, shoipping centers etc.) it can be different, as the proprietor is free to prohibit unauthorized photography.

BUT (and it is a big BUT), publishing these images is a different story. If you publish portraits of any person (even if the photograph was legally taken) you should always get a written permission by that person unless it is a VIP or "person of public interest" or the person is not really interesting, but the situation is. In German law, and to my knowledge in this respectz it is very similar in most other Western countries, you can take and publish images of an event or building or public space, including the poeple there, if the people are simply part of the overall image and not picked out.

Ben
07-02-2009, 08:05 AM   #8
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This question is so dependent on local laws that it is almost impossible to answer.
Also, what is legal may still not be considered socially acceptable.
Generally in North America, it is OK to shoot first and ask questions later, providing the photographer is either on public land, or has permission of the landowner to be there.
As far as publishing goes, there is no legal need to get a release, even if the person is the main subject of the image, providing it is published for non-commercial use, such as on a personal website.
If you intend to make money off the image, then you need a release before selling it.
I believe news agencies are exempt from this.

The laws in the European Union countries (and the rest of the world, for that matter) may differ from this, sometimes greatly.
There is also the issue with subjects not wanting to be photographed and taking the law into their own hands regarding the photographer, and the police themselves are not above using intimidation and harassment against photographers.
I believe Britain has effectively made it illegal to photograph police officers for "security reasons".

It's all becoming very Orwellian

07-02-2009, 08:55 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I believe Britain has effectively made it illegal to photograph police officers for "security reasons".

It's all becoming very Orwellian
Sadly enough, that's all too true.

Ben
07-02-2009, 10:40 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I believe Britain has effectively made it illegal to photograph police officers for "security reasons".
Thankfully, that's not quite right, even if some police officers seem to think it is the case.
Photographers Rights And The Law In The UK

QuoteQuote:
Police officers have the discretion to ask people not to take photographs for public safety or security reasons, but the taking of photographs in a public place is not subject to any rule or statute.
07-02-2009, 11:46 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by tenpointnine Quote
Thankfully, that's not quite right, even if some police officers seem to think it is the case.
Photographers Rights And The Law In The UK
I know that all the photographer's associations issued flyers and short notes to hand over to police, to inform officers about the right of the photogs. But especially the London Met police seems to have been trained in Iraque, before the war and thus is not very concerned about laws and rights of individuals. There have been reports by photogs ever since the anti-terror legislation came into life, about abuses – several of those case have been widely published in the industry magazines like Professional Photgrapher. Sorry, to write that. In the past the British police was something like an ideal (the "classical" Bobby without weapons or Scotland Yard have been icons for us of just and helpful policing), but that has changed radically, not only since the Menezes murder.

Ben
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