Friday, January 22, 2010

Mass Gathering in defence of street photography

Ever since I started taking pictures as a pre-teen, authorities and others have tried stopping me, usually under the pretense of trespassing. Other times the authorities wanted to destroy the evidence of their "handy-work" or to just try to discourage me from doing what i was doing: to further inspire others in a rebellious lifestyle. But taking pictures in public spaces of architecture or anything of interest in the public sphere? This should not even be a question, the paranoia and control issues with terrorism as an excuse is not only despicable, it's pathetic and disgusting.

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety"
- Benjamin Franklin (1759)

The UK activist group "I'm a Photographer Not a Terrorist!" is planning a mass photo-shooting this Saturday in Trafalgar Square, London: "Following a series of high profile detentions under s44 of the terrorism act including 7 armed police 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. PHNAT feels now is the time for a mass turnout of Photographers, professional and amateur to defend our rights and stop the abuse of the terror laws."

Photography is under attack. Across the country it that seems anyone with a camera is being targeted as a potential terrorist, whether amateur or professional, whether landscape, architectural or street photographer.

Not only is it corrosive of press freedom but creation of the collective visual history of our country is extinguished by anti-terrorist legislation designed to protect the heritage it prevents us recording.

This campaign is for everyone who values visual imagery, not just photographers.

We must work together now to stop this before photography becomes a part of history rather than a way of recording it.
for more info go here:

(Thanks BoingBoing)

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