Children at sports events

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by bogeyes, Jun 17, 2007.

  1. bogeyes

    bogeyes Member

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    My youngest son plays under 9s soccer in the UK, I was going to take a few photographs of him playing. So I asked the coach if he had any objections, he said he hadn't but I had better clear it with all the coaching staff and all the parents of both teams. In the end I did not bother it was just too much hassel. Its been my first season as a junior soccer spectator I did not see any parents with a camera of any kind take a photograph at any of the 24 games I watched. Do you think that people are worried that they will be accussed of being a paedophile if they photograph children? Are you free to take photographs of children participating in team sports in your part of the world and would you feel comfortable as the photographer?
     
  2. thebanana

    thebanana Subscriber

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    Political correctness run amok. I doubt any child pornographers get off on kids playing soccer, but it's an easy excuse for those who want to cover their asses. Having said that, I know some amateur sports organizations have rules about this sort of thing. You should be able to get the go-ahead from whoever is organizing the event. If you get that, I don't see why you would have to get the permission of every single person involved, assuming you are not taking photos for professional purposes. And as far as I know (in Canada) you don't need anyone's permission to take shots of your own kid.
     
  3. Adrian Twiss

    Adrian Twiss Member

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    It's getting increasingly more difficult to photograph on the street these days. I used to enjoy candid photography but to be honest I don't want someone tapping me on the shoulder asking me if I'm photographic kids so I have given it up. Ditto I am very careful when photographing at the seaside. Mind you, a Linhof monorail isn't quite what the well equipped pervert is using these days.
     
  4. AgX

    AgX Member

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    Even that this question arises is irritating.

    I'm not a parent, and perhaps can't imagine their anxiety.
    But aren't we spoiling our daily life?

    From what I learned at Apug it seems over here still different than overseas. But I'm not that naive; when coming across a child who has hurt itself, I'm thinking whether to bother with it and be insulted or worse...

    I would be glad, if I had an answer to it. But perhaps it is ourself. Perhaps it is ourself with that self-censoring in our minds which is worsening the situation.
     
  5. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    As the mother of two boys, I take the camera to their sporting events and practices a lot, and, knock wood, no one has been bothered by my picture making. There's a soccer practice in my gallery, and more recently, I made some photographs during some swim lessons my kids had.

    Granted, if I were a total stranger, it might give some parents pause, but I think if you have kids playing a sport... no one should say you can't photograph them.
     
  6. Poco

    Poco Member

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    <Granted, if I were a total stranger, it might give some parents pause,>

    Or if you were male, perhaps.
     
  7. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Maybe, but a father should be able to photograph their own kids playing soccer. And, from time to time the local paper will send a photographer to a kids sporting event, and they are often male. No one really bats an eye if you have a reason to be there with a camera.
     
  8. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    suzanne,

    as someone who used to photograph baseball games for "the league"
    parents do bat an eye when there is a male with a camera,
    and this was 15 years ago before d*** ... even more recently
    when i worked for a weekly, and i was shooting with a D**,
    at first they don't mind because they think they might
    be "famous" ( ¡¡¡ HAHAHA !!!) but people always mind if they or their
    kids are in some "man's camera" ... as a parent of 3 kids,
    if i see a stranger taking their photographs, i approach them,
    and at my kids' schools teachers, and parents have approached me ...

    unfortunately, men always get scrutinized about this sort of thing more than
    their female counterparts.

    good luck ! :wink:
    john
     
  9. Joe Lipka

    Joe Lipka Member

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    In our community the various neighborhood pools have a recreational swimming league during the summer months. I was the "official team photographer" with the assignment of creating a slide show (told you it was a long time ago) at the season ending team banquet. The age groups were 5 and under to 15-18 years old, both boys and girls. I had a great deal of fun doing this. With all the attention paid to child predators and other unsavory folk, I don't think they take pictures of the swim meets anymore. Too bad, lots of childhood memories lost to PC.
     
  10. Poco

    Poco Member

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    Yes, but those reasons have become very narrowly and strictly bounded and you'd better be prepared to wear them on your sleeve if you want to avoid being challenged.

    I've been doing a mini project on photographing garage sales and have twice now been given permission to take shots so long as I don't get the kids of the house in-frame. Fine with me, but the one time in particular when a little girl was told to hide behind a tree, I was really struck by i how out of control things have gotten. It's become ridiculous.
     
  11. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Point taken.... so you think "making art" won't fly as a good reason?? :wink:
     
  12. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Fair enough, John. I tend, myself, to be more leery around strangers in, say, a shopping mall.

    When we are at the local pool or soccer game I know many of the parents... lots with video and still cameras, and I haven't seen anyone asked to stop.

    I do think the local newspaper photog may get more scrutiny, but he's shown up at so many events he's pretty well known among the local parents at this point, and I see him going about his business at lots of local events where there are kids present without any hassle.

    Granted... if he were to show up at the local playground for no particular event, I'm sure he'd get hassled. As would any stranger with a camera.
     
  13. Poco

    Poco Member

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    Suzanne,

    You know, the most galling thing isn't that photographing kids is out of bounds, because they're not really a great photographic interest for me. It's that on the rare occasions I'm tempted, I have to do it on the sly and come away feeling like the very pervert the parents would suspect me of being. Like I've done something really nasty and dirty.

    And while on the topic (though not entirely related) digital has made violators of all of us who've adopted a hybrid work flow. Intimacy takes on whole new meaning once you've scanned a 4x5 portrait at 2400 DPI and dustbusted on the near pixel level.
     
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  15. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Takeover

    The lunatics have taken over the asylum bogeyes , I read a report in a UK newspaper recently about a woman in a village recently whose house was besieged by the local population because she was listed in the phone book as a paediatrician!. I think a lot of the fear and ignorance is whipped up by the media because it's good for circulation or viewing figures.
     
  16. Michel Hardy-Vallée

    Michel Hardy-Vallée Membership Council Council

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    More serioulsy, "Making Art" in Québec is not an excuse to take the photograph of anyone without their consent if they are recognizable on the picture. Public interest is the only legally valid reason for doing so.
     
  17. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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    I've long thought that an ideal headline would be,

    ALARMISM: IS IT THE BIGGEST THREAT FACING THE WORLD TODAY?

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  18. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

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    Interesting thread - and to think that the big buyers of all those new-fangled DSLRs include soccer dads. Boy, are THEY in for a big surprise when they go to the first game and pull out their digi-widget! :surprised:
     
  19. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    yeah -
    you know everyone there, it is a bit easier ...

    even though by the end of the season i was known
    (by all 72 teams), and people expected me to take
    photographs of "their kid" i was still harrassed
    by the baseball commissioner's wife ...

    nope ... won't do that job again ...

    just the same, YOUR second x chromosome helps quite a bit :smile:
     
  20. BradS

    BradS Subscriber

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    Funny...
    I have two boys (ages 6 and 11). Both very active in sports. I take my 35mm gear with me every time I go to one of their games. I have photographs of them playing t-ball, baseball, soccer and basketball. It has never once even occurred to me that somebody might be uncomfortable with me photographing my kids in a public place.
     
  21. bogeyes

    bogeyes Member

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    I forgot to mention that its not photographing your own kids that is the problem, some people are paranoid that in a team sport their kids will included in your photographs even if they are only in the background.
     
  22. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    As a parent there are a lot of concerns and worries with regard to your kids. Being in a teammates snapshots of a children's soccer game is NOT one of them.
     
  23. AgX

    AgX Member

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    This all is so ridiculous. If I only could laugh about it…

    As I wrote above, the more we give in the worse it becomes.
     
  24. thebanana

    thebanana Subscriber

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    There's the rub. In my town the City Council has determined that indoor pools, skating rinks etc. aren't really "public" and have enacted a bylaw expressly forbidding anyone from taking pictures of children on "their" property. They hide behind the reasoning that if they didn't enact such a measure, pervs would be free to take phone cams into the washrooms/changerooms to take photos and there would be nothing to be done about it. I know of an individual who was taking shots of kids (not his) having fun in a public wading pool, and he was asked (not so politely) to get off "their" property.
     
  25. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

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    I first encountered this in New York in the mid-90s. The first time the police stuck their noses in was in the UK in the late 90s.

    That's one reason I live in France. Not the only one, but not irrelevant either.

    Paranoia.

    cheers,

    Roger
     
  26. DBP

    DBP Member

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    It's a funny thing. I take pictures of random kids around the neighborhood all the time, and only get smiles, waves, and requests for copies (which I fill if i can find the parent later). I keep expecting someone to to object, but it doesn't happen. I don't know if it is because I live in an art-friendly area, or just don't look threatening. Could be both, of course. And I do get random people walking up and asking me questions (about cameras, or for directions) wherever I go, so maybe it's me.