Thanks for those links Art. I am surprised and depressed by reading the article about the case in Quebec. Frankly, I am surprised by this whole subject. How can it possibly be that anyone would ever think that they have some ownership of their image. If that were true then, as others have said, how can you be in public in the first place ?
To live in a society at all implies responsibilities. Unless you want to go and live in a cave as a hermit, then I think you have a responsibility to accept that living amongst others and accepting their society as your own, means that you are accepting that your image is part of that society. If you really do not want your image shared, then first you certainly have no right to capture anyone else's and second you have no right to ever leave the house without a bag over your head.
Years ago, when I was on my way to (insert country), I was advised not to photograph the local citizenry without their permission. Apparently, many believed that if you capture their image with a camera, you also capture their soul.
Different people see things differently. So I've always made it a point to try not to impose my values on others. If they don't want me to photograph them, I won't. Plain and simple. The reason they don't want to be photographed is none of my business.
FWIW, if anyone wants to photograph me... my left side is my "good" side. ;-)
To me, you are in public and on the street, you are fair game. However, as the photographer I also have to make the judgement call on personal safety as you never know on how people behave. As for me I don't care if I am photographed, just don't do it early in the morning before my mug of coffee.
"Life moves pretty fast, if you don't stop and look around once and a while, you might just miss it."
I make no attempt to hide from others who are taking pictures nor do I hide when taking pictures. I also don't make a production out of my picture taking -- something I see many doing -- which probably makes me blend in a bit.
If I'm on the 'street' shooting and I wish to have people in it I don't ask, try to 'know' my subject or engage them. I treat them as components. I don't generally shoot people who are exceptional or out of the ordinary and it is generally what they are doing that interests me not who or what they are.
In my opinion...
Street shots of people unasked is not a formula for good or bad photography nor is it in any way unethical. Street shooting is not history because of the public's heightened awareness of the camera. Being subjected to a camera is just one of many hazards we all must be deal with if we wish to be in public places.
[size=5]BINGO![/size][size=2] Who are we to demand that everyone has to live by our own personal standards?[/size]
Originally Posted by bob01721
[size=1]This is precisely why places are banning cameras. This attitude has done more harm than good. Example is the Hopi Indian Reservation. All cameras even cell phones are banned, and you get searched. Reson being that too many photographers have abused the people by taking their pictures when they didn't want it taken. Many of their religious ceremonies that they consider ultra sacred were photographed and presented in such a way as to demean them. It is a fine line between being responsible photographers, and insensitive types. Yeah maybe it is a slice in time you think is a great photograph, but what does it mean to the next person. Telling them that they can't leave their house without a bag on their head is just plain stupid and leads to the laws banning cameras. Have the courtesy to recognize that it never hurts to talk to your subject. When I have been in other countries, I have at least enough grasp of the language to ask a simple question, or have someone with me that can communicate. Not all cultures deem it a right to have their photographs taken. Learn the laws, learn the culture, and learn some common respect. Just because you "WANT IT" (wish I could add that little girl self rightous demanding singsong sound to this last phrase) doesn't make it your right in all instances. After all I have the right to fart in your face, or if I could to puke on you, but common decency keeps me from being that vulgar. To others having their picture taken is just as vulgar.[/size]
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This is one of those threads that has broadened so much that it is difficult to respond to. Roger seems to be referring to the whole gamut of street, news and documentary photography.
I've done quite a lot of documentary film and photography in places where I don't speak much of the language. Whether you have a common verbal language or not, the issue of consent is one of respect, and effort. It may take time to establish a relationship. The time-honoured guideline of "do as you would be done by" applies.
There are, of course, situations in which there may be an overriding reason to just go for it.
"Take care not to do harm unintentionally."
Originally Posted by Helen B
Indeed I am, because I do not see how they can be disentangled. Consider a magazine story that contains pictures of people in the street. Is it street, news or documentary? When does 'documentary' slide into 'news'? And if either is shot in the street, how is it not 'street'.
I could care less if someone takes my photograph when I'm in a public space.
You may think you have some right to privacy when you are in public, but you don't. In public there is no privacy. In an urban or suburban environment we are constantly being photographed.
Get over it.
Last edited by willie_901; 06-25-2006 at 01:50 PM. Click to view previous post history.
As you say, we are constantly being photographed in public places. Indeed, I fear that 'security cameras' have greatly contributed to the paranoia. It would be odd if we accepted Big Brother photographing us but rejected our fellow photographers.
Speaking of which, one of the problems with the the use of the security cameras today in Japan is that the cameras are installed in the locker rooms of some public bath places! In some cases there are no signs saying that, and these cameras are completely hidden.
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks
No wonder some people freak out sometimes.