The September 11 Syndrome
Today, it is increasingly more and more difficult to take photographs peacefully without being challenged by the so-called guardians of the place. It is generally accepted that any place frequented by the general public is in fact a private place. You have the CCTV everywhere to look at you and any single of your movement.
On last Friday, I went to take some photos of a tram station underground. This is one of the few tram station which is underground in The Hague. I though that I can be quite nice picture for DT. I sow some already of that place. Again, a man or a so-called guard came to challenged me with his talk- walky patting me on my back and telling me that I am not entitled to take photographs because it is a private place! Faint! Ha! Having a little experience already and having seen few picture of on DT, I began to chat a bit with the guy friendly. I began to discuss the fact that it is a place where anyone can enter without any restriction ... how this place can be private? He has subsequently said that if I want to take photographs, I would need a written document of the tram company. In my head I thought about all facts of MR, PR and the difficulty of getting those papers. And when he told me that I was not obliged to delete the pictures already taken, I told to myself that this guy is only repeating the instruction issued from his walkie-talkie. I then made a low profile by saying that I am just a tourist who passes through there and I'll go my way. End of the encounter.
I read on-line that there are many places that taking a photograph in public is a crime, is dangerous for the photographer and his equipment (that was the case in Britain, if I remember correctly )
My conclusion is that everyone is walking now with a digital camera, as a mobile phone or compact form see the form of a DLSR but on the other side, where you can use such equipment is increasingly reduced since the collapse of twin towers.
And you? Have you had any experience comparing to mine? How was it for you? What is your opinion on this matter?
Photo credits: Digikhmer.