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Tags - freedom
January 23, 2010January 23, 2010  0 comments  Uncategorized

Photographers once again gather in London to protest being treated as Terrorists


I've been meaning to spread word about this for a bit.  There is a fairly scary movement in regards to some of the overcompensation paranoia of terrorism that is targeting photographers, press, and free speech in general.  Laws in the U.K., U.S. and elsewhere are eroding the rights of photographers, both press and citizen.


Today, January 23, the website "I'm a Photographer, not a Terrorist" ( is holding another protest in Trafalgar Square at noon.  So if you're a Londoner with a camera and want to preserve free speech, please support this movement!


The gathering is similar to one organized last year in front of Scotland Yard to protest additional laws to Section 44 of the Terrorism Act making photographing the police or PSCO's illegal in the UK.  This obviously puts the public at risk against police brutality and misbehehavior.  It also jeopordizes the press's ability to do their jobs in covering news and acting as a watchdog.


This year's event is particularly in response to several of the high profile cases that have occurred such as "detaining an award winning architectural photographer in the City of London, the arrest of a press photographer covering campaigning santas at City Airport and the stop and search of a BBC photographer at St Pauls Cathedral and many others."  This is all in addition to daily stopping, detaining, fining, and even arresting of citizen and tourist photographers in the U.K.


You may wonder why a U.S. citizen is keeping such a close watch on this U.K. news.  Sadly, the U.S. is using the U.K. as an example and drafting it down this civil rights hole.  Photographers on both continents are well aware of this growing myth, purported by our governments, that taking photographs is somehow "wrong" or "suspicious," even of normal tourist destinations.


Carlos Miller is a photojournalist in the U.S. who's blog focuses on the eroding rights and sentiments towards photographers and journalists.  He also delves into other freedom of speech / first amendment cases and police misconduct.  He was recently interviewed on a Chicago radio station in regards to new dispicable Chicago Transit Authority posters that tell riders to "call 911" if they see "excessive photography/filming" - whatever that is.  This is despite the CTA's own website specifically allowing photography.


I could go on-and-on, but instead I'll leave you with a list of blogs for more information.  I will however, add one more example.  Last year, a man was arrested for photographing Amtrak trains.  Why was he acting so suspiciously?  He was a railfan photographing trains...for an Amtrak photography contest to win a trip on Amtrak.

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Tags: photography freedom 

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