New York/Photographer’s Rights

Videographer being arrested for recording Suffolk County, New York, police activity.

Returning to a recurring topic on this blog, the increasing harassment of photographers by police and private security. This comes by way of PDN, the Photo District News, and shows an egregious, but all too frequent, example of police ignorance of the constitution (in spite of this officer’s claim to 30 years of experience). I am putting this up  because it is important that people understand that this kind of thing is going on routinely. Usually, the result is the photographer backing off to avoid arrest–a good idea most of the time–but a de facto trampling of one’s rights. Every time I go out with my camera–especially the view camera–I worry that I will find myself in such a confrontation with authority.

Despite the charges being dismissed–which is what usually happens when these things go to court–the videographer has chosen to sue for violation of his constitutional rights, and the New York Civil Liberties Union is supporting his case. Please consider, as I do, financially supporting the NYCLU or the ACLU.

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