MarkAndMarina 1:42pm, 16 February 2007
I'm surprised to be unable to find this already mentioned here... I'm predicting some righteous indignation and pitchfork-waving.


We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Stop proposed restrictions regarding photography in public places.


"There are a number of moves promoting the requirement of 'ID' cards to allow photographers to operate in a public place.

It is a fundamental right of a UK citizen to use a camera in a public place, indeed there is no right to privacy when in a public place.

These moves have developed from paranoia and only promote suspicion towards genuine people following their hobby or profession.
"

I haven't been able to find any details of any proposed legislation, but it sounds like a formalisation of the experiences that we so frequently hear about - run-ins with security guards, prevented from taking pictures of public places, etc.

There are some obvious questions that spring to mind which cannot be answered without further details of this legislation:
Is there a restriction on the size/type of camera or lens (i.e. not just "big" dSLR cameras, what about a compact or mobile phone?)
What if you're in the UK on holiday, and have your camera with you?
What punishment could they mete out (deletion of images? Confiscation of equipment? Fine? Imprisonment?!)

Any thoughts?
Psycho Crow PRO 11 years ago
First I have heard about it, but I have just signed the petition. There are pro's and con's to having an ID for photography, it would cut down on the amount of people getting in the way when you are after "the shot", but it would make the hobby of photography more difficult to enjoy. Really all depends on how they intend to issue these passes and under what conditions.
Potatojunkie 11 years ago
I've also been unable to find any details of proposed legislation. Until some turn up, I'm treating this as an attempt by the petition starter to promote his own website.
grey brass [deleted] 11 years ago
I would recommend posting this in the UK group. I'm sure they will have a few things to say...
Walwyn PRO 11 years ago
One needs to understand that a lot of stuff on that website is a bit tenuous, though I would have signed this one:
petitions.pm.gov.uk/helping-hand/

Where are the proposed changes and how do they differ from the current situation?
www.sirimo.co.uk/ukpr.php/2004/11/19/uk_photographers_rig...

Until someone can show what is being proposed I call FUD and BS.
Briggate.com PRO 11 years ago
I would like to know more of what is meant by 'there have been a number of moves' ... this is the first I have heard of it and it is an area I teach.

There could never be an issue of passes --- not in the sense of something that you would need to apply for and be refused. At best they could issue guidelines that mean that police, private security personnel, community policing officers etc. could ask for you to identify yourself. That's not particularly onerous. But I would be amazed if anything like that were to develop in the UK...

Seems to me a case of generalized paranoia. Please tell us what the evidence is that there are "some moves" in this direction.
mojolicious 11 years ago
I haven't been able to find any details of any proposed legislation

That'll be because there isn't any.
mojolicious Posted 11 years ago. Edited by mojolicious (member) 11 years ago
Sign this one! Sign this one!
grey brass [deleted] 11 years ago
We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to nip round this weekend and give me a hand put me new windows in and paint the bog.

LOL
Mr Jaded 11 years ago
This is not America (Hooray!!!)
Thunderchild7 PRO 11 years ago
@mojolicious

This is so funny

@Making Notes

Shame that they rejected this one.
Marco Wessel 11 years ago
"What if you're in the UK on holiday, and have your camera with you?"

Well, I don't think any country doesn't require foreigners to carry their ID with them anyway...

Not that I'm for this law or anything, don't get me wrong.
matt Posted 11 years ago. Edited by matt (member) 11 years ago
At best they could issue guidelines that mean that police, private security personnel, community policing officers etc. could ask for you to identify yourself. That's not particularly onerous. But I would be amazed if anything like that were to develop in the UK...

While there aren't any such proposals, I do have to say it wouldn't surprise me. The national ID scheme is right on track. There are already plans to have visa-holders required to carry ID and produce it on demand. I think the only question is whether such a 'photographers-only' scheme would be introduced before an 'everyone' scheme that would make it redundant. As someone who gets fairly regularly stopped when taking photographs (the price you pay in the UK for looking not-quite-middle-class, it seems), I sort of dread the police having yet another excuse to bother me.

Marco - no one in the UK is required to carry identification with them. Because many fewer people drive or own cars, even the US/Canadian unofficial standard of "can I see your driver's license" doesn't really apply. I know plenty of people who generally have not much more ID on them than their bank card.
Eric Hands PRO 11 years ago
In the meantime, one that could really do with your attention is this one:
I know it's not photography, but it seems to be a popular subject for many of us - please sign this petition to register your protest at the new licensing regulations...it seems that deafening TV / Video / Jukebox noise is fine, but no longer can we have an old fart with an accordian tootling along harmlessly in the corner of our local bar - or anywhere else for that matter - without petty restrictions which this government are continuing to introduce 'for our own good'.
The Government have recently passed laws in the UK to try and suppress live music and dance. Pubs which could previously offer work to solo singers or duos now have to pay for a special licence and can only have 12 of these per year. Even school Xmas concerts need to be licensed. And forward the link to anyone who might be sympathetic. Please.
petitions.pm.gov.uk/licensing
Mark Zuid 11 years ago
The way this government is going it wouldn't surprise me in the least if we all had to have a chip inserted in the back of our necks so they could just scan us & find out exactly what we've been doing.

You might laugh at that but i'm sure it's already been discussed at some point.
admin
♥ shhexy corin ♥ PRO 11 years ago
Can't they just ban photos altogether?
Walwyn PRO Posted 11 years ago. Edited by Walwyn (member) 11 years ago
Even if you drive you don't need to have a driving licence on you, though if stopped you may be required to show it a local police station within a few days. Nor do you have to supply any ID to a policeman, nor give a name and address, however they may subsequently arrest you on suspicion of having done X, though failure to produce ID is not sufficient reason for suspicion that you have done X. Providing you are willing to waste a bit of time, when asked, you can tell them to go boil their head in a chip fryer.
admin
♥ shhexy corin ♥ PRO 11 years ago
I know plenty of people who generally have not much more ID on them than their bank card.

And several people who don't even have that
:\
matt 11 years ago
tell them to go boil their head in a chip fryer.

Which I believe is now grounds for arrest under the Terrorism Act 2006. At least if you're a little more brown than average.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
Which I believe is now grounds for arrest under the Terrorism Act 2006. At least if you're a little more brown than average.

I love "reverse" racism.

Pierre
Walwyn PRO 11 years ago
Arrest is one thing, charged another, and convicted something else.

One should not fear arrest.
Mark Zuid 11 years ago
One should not fear arrest.

You should fear getting shot in the process though.
matt 11 years ago
One should not fear arrest.

Considered on its own, no, but it generally carries with it an assortment of other consequences, from simple inconvenience to loss of employment, which allow it to be used as a bludgeon.

And Pierre, I wouldn't mind a clarification on what you mean by "referse racism". It might help to know that the Terrorism Act 2006 made an offence of 'glorifying terrorism', but rather carefully carved out an exception in the case of the IRA and several other organisations. It's enormously clear to me the act is targeted primarily at the Muslim community in this country, hence my comment.
Gomi-no-Sensei 11 years ago
Uhm ... I thought only in Italy they made stupid laws, I was wrong ...
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
I often hear about the fear of "brown" people with regards to terrorism. The implication is that "we" are institutionally racist when we respond to terrorism that comes from a particular background; that somehow our fear of "other" is what drives us to be concerned about terrorism. Pardon me, but I thought being bombed by terrorists was what caused that concern.

As for "glorifying terrorism", well, the UK government has lots of moronic laws on the books. I can't help you there.

Apropos

Pierre
daffy grade [deleted] Posted 11 years ago. Edited by daffy grade (member) 11 years ago
At least if you're a little more brown than average.

Not feeling your usual precise self Matt?

(edited for precision)
pamelaadam PRO 11 years ago
can't they just ban numptie bliar
insite 11 years ago
One should not fear arrest.

As someone who usally has children with them and seems to attract the unwelcome attention of security and police officers it's not so much the arrest as the accompanying social workers that I fear

pamelaadam can't they just ban numptie bliar

Considering what he's got away with so far it would seem not. Nothing sticks to Teflon Tony
matt 11 years ago
The implication is that "we" are institutionally racist when we respond to terrorism that comes from a particular background; that somehow our fear of "other" is what drives us to be concerned about terrorism. Pardon me, but I thought being bombed by terrorists was what caused that concern.

Pierre, I do agree with you in principle, but I don't think that's what's happening here. The situation in the UK has crossed a line in that the government's actions go far beyond a reasonable 'response to terrorism' and do indeed constitute racist policies. This isn't some appeal to sociological arguments about "fear of the other", but is rather based on observation of the government's actions, both legislatively, in comments to the press and in Parliament, and in the actions of the police and judiciary.

This isn't a community group complaining about a fictional piece of entertainment, or (more appropriately) a user on web forum complaining about admin censorship - it's very real actions by people's own government that's at issue, and I don't think it can be casually dismissed as over-sensitivity. It is what it is: disgusting, racist, and oppressive.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
Oppressed? Do these guys look oppressed to you?



Pierre
ART NAHPRO PRO 11 years ago
A law that is unworkable is a bad law, whatever the motives behind it.

Police in the UK already have sufficient powers to intervene in public places if they deem you to be acting suspiciously or being a nuisance-sufficient to stop you taking photographs if they want to...or just to get you to "move on" for creating an "obstruction".
matt Posted 11 years ago. Edited by matt (member) 11 years ago
I don't know, Pierre, are you saying they should be? Because this sort of demonstration is precisely what the 2006 Act targets and prohibits.

For someone who got a bee in his bonnet when a security guard gave you stick about taking a photograph, I'd think you'd actually be concerned about things like free speech and encroachments on civil liberties.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
No, I don't think they should be. But they shouldn't be surprised when they speak, in public, like that and then find out people think they are prone to violence.

Pierre
matt 11 years ago
Again, I'm not talking about "people", but the government, which has a much higher responsibility to its citizens. It's their legislation and actions that I find particularly alarming and racist, and I don't think it's possible to justify an official, institutional, discrimination against an entire community with an appeal to depictions of a small minority seen in the media. If one person does it, he's just a fool, but when the government does it, they're something far worse.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
with an appeal to depictions of a small minority seen in the media.

Small minority? I very much doubt that.

A minority? Almost assuredly.

But not a small one.

Anyhow, I agree: restrictions on speech, no matter how disgusting that speech may be, should be very very very narrow.

But you live in the UK, and the UK has almost no modern history of civil rights protection whatsoever. Which is too bad, since it was what became the UK that invented civil rights in the first place.

Pierre
matt 11 years ago
Small minority? I very much doubt that.

Well, there were what, a few dozen people in the photograph you posted? That's a pretty small minority. The extrapolation you're engaging in is exactly what I think is the big problem in justifying these restrictions: no one knows how many people would agree with what's on those signs, but you still get pictures just like that held up to justify some extremely reprehensible actions that affect a community much broader than what's shown.

Think of the corresponding tactic - it wouldn't be hard for me to wander out and find a picture or a website expressing the vilest racism you care to imagine. If I went down to a library, I could find examples going back over a century. Does it make sense for me to use that and say "if they keep talking like that, is it any wonder that people think they are prone to racism" where I tacitly let 'they' stand for 'all white europeans'? What sort of criteria do I have to meet before I can assume that it's not an opinion held by a small minority of people? Every time I shake hands with an American, should I think "hmm, I bet she approves of torture"?

Guilt by association is a pernicious thing.
David Mapletoft 11 years ago
isnt it funny how one mans fear is another mans conversation point - the fool who started this will be quite proud of all the responses he has gotten.

we live in a world where we are over regulated and over paranoid because we read newspapers, listen to radio -

media:
M aking money from
E veryone because the human being
D elights
I n Attention.
A lways

(u can see i am no journo!)

Go forth and take photos - of anything that light falls upon; and if there is not light, use a flash!
admin
♥ shhexy corin ♥ PRO 11 years ago
Every time I shake hands with an American, should I think "hmm, I bet she approves of torture"?

I certainly hope they do... it's why I've booked my holiday there.
maddog. 11 years ago
I can't be arsed to read all that. Surely there aren't people aboot who think that people should have id when photographing in a public place??????

I must have misread something here. I'm sick of all the millions of bullshit nannystate UK laws. Grrr.

*leaves country*


*forgets marbles*

Must be a mistake. I can't read anyhow.
mojolicious 11 years ago
I can't be arsed to read all that. Surely there aren't people aboot who think that people should have id when photographing in a public place??????

No, no there aren't.

Unless the people with the cameras are brown.
maddog. 11 years ago
crikey.

i was brown before i had a shower tonight.
mojolicious 11 years ago
That's simply the superficial brown-ness of the English Working Man.

I'm talking about the sort of brown-ness that goes right through to their brown-black hearts.

See?
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
Matt, you're not seeing the forrest.

Pierre
admin
♥ shhexy corin ♥ PRO 11 years ago
gump?
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
Does it make sense for me to use that and say "if they keep talking like that, is it any wonder that people think they are prone to racism" where I tacitly let 'they' stand for 'all white europeans'?

Actually Matt, you already did this.

Pierre
Walwyn PRO 11 years ago
@maddog
can't be arsed to read all that. Surely there aren't people aboot who think that people should have id when photographing in a public place??????

Perhaps one will be charged with committing photography.

@matt
That's a pretty small minority.

I remember the genuine shock by the young muslim guys in Leeds the BBC interviewed the following the London Transport bombing:

"No not Leeds lads, I can't believe that Leeds lads would do something like that! Not Leeds lads ... Bradford Yes!"

Then there was the damn fool on the radio back in September who had been barracking the Home Secretary, at some meeting with a Muslim community where he recommend that they turn in any teenagers that got a bit moody or surely. Anyway in the course of the interview this dummy said "The way this government behaves is it any wonder people explode" had to pull off the motorway after that.
matt 11 years ago
Actually Matt, you already did this.

No Pierre, I quite categorically have not. I apologise if that's your reading of it, but I think I've made it enormously clear that the problem I'm addressing is one of an institutionalised racism in the UK government, and I make this judgement based on the government's own legislation and actions. The government's guilt comes not from any perceived associations or socio-psychological mythology, but purely from the official, sanctioned actions of the apparatus of the state.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
one of an institutionalised racism in the UK government

And where would this come from? Certainly not a vacuum.

Pierre
matt Posted 11 years ago. Edited by matt (member) 11 years ago
I don't actually care where it comes from. The function of a constitutional democracy is to protect the rights of all its citizens, whether they're in the minority or the majority. I couldn't care less if the 'average man on the street' is an enormous bigot - for the government to adopt those same attitudes betrays us all. Like I said; the government has to be held to a different standard than an individual.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
The function of a constitutional democracy is to protect the rights of all its citizens

The UK is one of those?

I couldn't care less if the 'average man on the street' is an enormous bigot - for the government to adopt those same attitudes betrays us all.

By saying that the government is bigotted you are, in fact, implying that the 'average man on the street' is also so - white and racist, in fact.

Pierre
matt 11 years ago
The UK is one of those? Yes.

By saying that the government is bigotted you are, in fact, implying that the 'average man on the street' is also so - white and racist, in fact.

Again, for the third time, the government has to be held to a higher standard than any individual. It is, in effect, someone's right to be a bigoted, ignorant idiot. The government should not discriminate among the various brands of idiots, favouring any one over any other.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
But what you're implying with your particular claim is that the government is reflecting the bigotry of the white racists that populate the UK, which implies that white UK is racist.

Pierre
matt Posted 11 years ago. Edited by matt (member) 11 years ago
But what you're implying with your particular claim is that the government is reflecting the bigotry of the white racists that populate the UK, which implies that white UK is racist.

Nonsense. Does the Canadian Conservative government's opposition to gay marriage imply that Canada is homophobic as a whole? No. Does their opposition to Kyoto imply that Canadians don't care about the environment? No. That's not how governments work, and I'm fairly certain you know that.

If you want my real opinion, it's that the UK government is maintaining and manipulating a climate of fear and division to protect its own agenda, but like I said before, I don't care about their motivations - it's their actions that tell the real story.
MarkAndMarina 11 years ago
isnt it funny how one mans fear is another mans conversation point - the fool who started this will be quite proud of all the responses he has gotten.

Interesting viewpoint, and I'm sure that you actually have something valid to add to this discussion...

The poll's not mine or anything to do with me; I found the poll under discussion elsewhere, thought it was interesting to see the UK-slant to the issue for a change (almost all the scare stories thus far seem to have been from the US) and in traditional fashion it sounded like a UK government overreaction.
Obviously, as has been pointed out, virtually anyone can create a "PM's poll" - and polls by themself do not generally achieve much. It has happened before, however, that when something has caused a mighty furore in the public space, that the issue is noticed by the more traditional media. This can only be a good thing, as it will hopefully lead to a clarification of what - if anything - is being discussed.

Am I a fool for all that? Perhaps.
elastic giants [deleted] 11 years ago
If the racism is institutional then it is continuing and persistent, and outlasts any individual government.

I know you know this.

Furthermore if the Canadian government is against gay marriage that implies that the majority of people are against (or apathetic to) gay marriage, yes. It doesn't imply homophobia unless being against gay marriage is inherently homophobic (it isn't.)

Pierre
matt Posted 11 years ago. Edited by matt (member) 11 years ago
if the Canadian government is against gay marriage that implies that the majority of people are against (or apathetic to) gay marriage, yes.

Again, nonsense. Not everyone who votes for a party supports or agrees with all of their policies. In this case, however, we have some concrete data to look at - the majority of Canadians since the passage of bill C-38 feel that it should stand, and the debate not be reopened. Polls that specifically allow the 'apathy' response give an even lower rate of opposition to gay marriage than those which require choosing a side. So no, the government's position does not reflect the position of the majority of people on this issue.

If the racism is institutional then it is continuing and persistent, and outlasts any individual government.

I know you know this.


I very much know it, it's one of the reasons that the recent policies and legislation are so abhorrent.
teh resa PRO 11 years ago
didn't get a chance to read more than half of the comments on this thread, don't know how it drifted from photography ids to gay marraige but anyway, about the photography, maybe you (the person who started the discussion) should try to pressure the camera companies to sign that petition and use their influence to prevent these kinds of restrictions? They have a vested interest after all. Also, we can boycott any of the camera companies that don't want to pressure governments to lay off photographers. Use the flickr camera finder to find the bad camera companies and don't click on any of the photos taken with those cameras!

Yes, I knew there was a use for the camera finder. Thanks Flickr!
maddog. 11 years ago
Wow, I never realised the UK government was racist. How scary! Does that mean that all the Labour voters are closet racists as well?

Hold on, isn't that, like, a bit naughty? I'm calla da policeman.

*emigrates to China*
iansand PRO 11 years ago
Not just Labour voters. Everyone who votes asserts their superiority over those who don't vote. In a truly equal society no one would vote.

You know it makes sense.
delirious roof [deleted] 11 years ago
signed.. just in case
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