Taking a photo of someone when they're in a private moment is an invasion of privacy, even if they're in a public place. Intruding into their private moment so that they become aware that you're taking a photo is an even greater invasion of privacy. We may have the legal right to do this, but that doesn't stop it being an invasion of privacy.
Personally, I believe that it would be a tragic loss if future generations are unable to see how people lived in 2013 because no-one made photos of strangers. This is one reason that I'm relaxed about people (or security systems) taking photos of me when I'm in public and I'm not aware that they're doing it.
But once they've broken into my private moment, they've engaged with me, and I think different rules apply. Once I'm aware of them, I feel that I should have a choice about whether to take part in their photography or not. My choice is almost always no, but others may choose differently.
I don't often shoot on the street, but when I do I treat others as I'd like to be treated myself.
As the subjects are of the same species, I would class capturing private moments (within reason of course) as faux pas. 'Invasion' is a very strong word. What about photographing gorillas in the wild? This is more of an 'invasion' since they aren't warned and don't have much of a say. Having curiosity about our own species is surely much more natural, since we understand each other better than we understand gorillas. Increasing reluctance to be photographed in the most mundane situations feels like some kind of tribal separatism. Backwardness. Inability to rationally assess threats. Maybe we need a new kind of community therapy:
Originally Posted by Ian Leake
1. Spend 30 minutes with the group considering the meaning of the words 'privacy' and 'invasion'.
2. How many times in the last week has somebody invaded your own or your family's privacy?
3. Is your anxiety about privacy justified?
4. Do you believe in the boogeyman?
I think as photographers - innocent observers of human relations - we have a way of thinking outside the box which is of value today more than ever.
I think you should first and foremost show a respect for individuals and if you are taking pictures that contain people this should be done in a way that doesn’t intrude their private space. For instance, when they are just figures within the framework of your composition, but not when they are doing something that could be personal to them at that point in time, like being sick or whatever. I also think in your face photography (which I understand some people do) is totally disrespectful to the individual. Perhaps a lot of paparazzi photography falls under this verboten heading.
OK, replace 'invasion' with 'intrusion'. The sentiment is the same. Just because someone has a camera doesn't mean they have a moral right to intrude upon another person's life. If a photographer makes a photo of me without me noticing then the intrusion is inconsequential and all's fair. But the d***heads who will fire a handheld strobe into someone's face at close range (as happened to me on Tottenham Court Road a while ago) are making a major intrusion. There are, of course, shades of grey in the middle.
Originally Posted by batwister
Think these are bad? Can you say Google Glass?
Originally Posted by jnanian
Lots of fistfights—or worse—coming in the near future, I fear. And if you think people are wary and fearful of your standard cameras now, just wait.
Originally Posted by Jim Christie
If you can repeat this situation again, now after some thinking - would you still do the same?
This Christmas I was given a pen. What was different about the pen is that it has a camera inside it. Yes, press the button, and you get a picture. You can even put it into movie mode, and it will record for over 1/2 hour. It looks like a pen. It writes like a pen. The same pen is sold under a number of different names, but it's the same product.
Want to get paranoid? "OMG! HE JUST CLICKED HIS PEN!!" A 640x480 movie is pretty decent, and the audio is decent, too. Cameras in pens, cameras in watches, cameras that clip onto eyeglasses, where will it all end?
And people freak when somebody picks up a real camera.
With a punch in the face. Or worse.
Originally Posted by Brian C. Miller
I guess if someone were to find my visage interesting enough to take a picture of on the street, I'd be OK with it.
But that is me.
If I were to take a picture of someone I'd really think it proper to ask permission and give an explanation of my
desire to take that picture.
Yes, I would. Parent overrules the inner photographer every time. :)
Originally Posted by darkosaric