Posts Tagged 'Gizmodo'

Photography Link Roundup

Photo by JH

• Traditional media — and photojournalism opportunities — might be shrinking, but The Raw File aims to be the place for long-term multimedia documentary projects. [The Raw File]

• Luke Sharrett, an intern for the New York Times’ Washington bureau, has to leave his post photographing the president and other high flyers to finish his degree. Despite getting over 400 photos in the paper, the New York Times apparently is pretty stringent about hiring photographers who have a degree. [Lens]

• Doug Rickard curates a huge archive of photography, interviews and essays, from the past to present, at American Suburb X. Think Bill Owens from the 70s, Garry Winogrand from the 80s, Richard Avedon from the 90s. The list goes on. [American Suburb X]

• Photographer Michelle Black is fascinated by the Amish, but there are inherent problems in photographing them, so she came up with “Three Tips for Noninvasive Photography.” [Black Star Rising]

• No one else wants to see your cat and hamster pics, but Gizmodo actually does, so submit your best photo to their Pet Photography Shooting Challenge. The photos need to be taken the week of the contest, and the deadline is this Sunday, August 22nd. [Gizmodo]

Photographers, Police & the Law

Photo by discarted

Al Tompkins of puts out an incredibly useful daily tip sheet of ideas and issues called “Al’s Morning Meeting” that journalists can then localize and adapt for their own communities. In response to the recent Gizmodo article, “Are Cameras the New Guns?“,  he interviewed Robb Harvey and Richard Goehler, two lawyers specializing in media issues, about the tension between law enforcement and photographers. It’s an excellent interview with a lot of salient points about photographers’ rights.

Al Tompkins: Are you seeing any new sensitivity by police to being photographed/videotaped?

Robb Harvey: The police have always been sensitive to accusations of wrongdoing or overreacting. I believe they are reacting to emerging technologies that allow millions of people to record events in real time, so we are likely to see more postings claiming misconduct and more efforts by police to prevent those postings.

The recent prosecutions mentioned in the Gizmodo article involved participants in the police action — persons being arrested or later charged. The video they have taken may be their best defense to the charges. Is the next step that law enforcement can prosecute recordings by bystanders? If that were the case, the widely disseminated video of the assault on Rodney King might never have seen the light of day.

Media organizations must remain vigilant and work to prevent the application of these laws in an unconstitutional way.

Richard Goehler: I would not say that I have seen any “new” sensitivity by law enforcement or firefighters here. In the past, I have heard about instances where police might confiscate or threaten to take a camera or recorder, but I would not call it a major newsgathering problem or interference.

I found the Gizmodo article very interesting. It seems to me that most of the cases highlighted in the article involved circumstances in which the videotaping or recording was of alleged abuse and/or improper conduct by the police. As a result, the police appeared more aggressive and more motivated to take action concerning the videotaping.

Often it appeared that the actions by law enforcement were in direct retaliation for the videotaping that had taken place. It was also interesting that these cases all took place in states or jurisdictions that have “two-party consent” statutes that let police officers make the argument that they had not consented to the videotaping.

Another interesting point about the cases in the article is that none of them involved traditional/mainstream media companies/reporters/videographers in their news gathering efforts. My sense is that law enforcement, even in a “two-party consent” state or jurisdiction, would be very cautious about trying to pursue claims like this against the media because doing so would surely bring a huge amount of attention and publicity with plenty of amicus support from other media organizations and journalism groups like the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Society of Professional Journalists.

Read the whole article on

%d bloggers like this: