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Re: filmscanners: OT: photographing on the street



Laurie,

Now you're (properly IMHO) backing off from your initial statement:

"You do in the U.S. if the person is recognizable and you do not want to get
sued for invasion of privacy."

Could you tell us what your background and/or training in this area or law
is so we know how reliable your assertions are?

Maris

----- Original Message -----
From: "Laurie Solomon" <laurie@advancenet.net>
To: <filmscanners@halftone.co.uk>
Sent: Sunday, May 20, 2001 1:11 AM
Subject: RE: filmscanners: OT: photographing on the street


| >There is no right to privacy in a public place by definition.
|
| Not necessarily true; it depends on what the courts decide is a public
place
| and not what the photographer or the
| "man-on-the-street" defines as a public place.  The courts, at least in
the
| US, base their definition on a number of factors including if the person
has
| a legitimate expectation of privacy even if it is a public place ( i.e., a
| public toilet). While one may not on each and every occasion  need a
| release, there are circumstances where a street photographer might need a
| release even for art based on privacy laws.  For instance, if you shoot
from
| a public street or place into the doorway, window, or courtyard of private
| property - and especially if you take a photograph of someone in the
private
| building or courtyard, then you might need or be best advised to obtain a
| property and/or model release if you are going to display and sell the
| photograph even as art.  You might get away with displaying and/or
| publishing the photograph as journalism or news; but not as likely as art
if
| the subject sees it and objects.  Another example, might be shopping malls
| or hospitals which the public often treat as public places but which are
| technically private property.  Leaving aside violations of trespass laws
| which might take place if you did your shooting within the confines of
such
| locations, you could be considered to be evading someone's privacy if you
| take their picture in those locations for public display or sale.
|
| That street photographers have gotten away with not having releases and
not
| being taken to court does not mean that they can't be taken to court for
not
| having a release and invading the subject's privacy if the subject sees
the
| image and objects.  It also does not mean that a court will not find you
| guilty of invasion of privacy on such occasions if they so choose.  I am
not
| saying that such legal actions are common or always won by the subject;
but
| I am saying that there is a possibility and that there have been cases in
| which artists have been taken to court for invasion of privacy for
| exhibiting and selling images of people as works of art without their
| permission. In a number of those cases, the artists have lost.
|
| Indeed, there have been some photographers who have taken candid images of
| people which were published in books long after the pictures were taken
who
| did not have releases only to find that after publication when the subject
| saw the picture of themselves they took legal action for invasion of
privacy
| or, in some cases, the family or heirs of a subject who has died will
bring
| legal action on behalf of the dead person or themselves on those grounds
| (even celebrities and their executors and inheritors have done so).
|
| I do agree that such legal actions were less the case in the past than
they
| are now in the information age where everyone realizes their identity and
| image is worth money as a commodity.
|
|
| >> If the subject is recognizable and your
| >> artwork defames their reputation and /or character or implies something
| >> untrue or that they find objectionable, you could be open for slander
and
| >> defamation legal actions as well in the U.S. and maybe in Canada.
|
| >Indeed, and a release won't help you with that.
|
| If you know for example that you will portraying someone as a drunk who is
| not a drunk by implication (i.e., showing the image of that person in a
art
| show titled "Images of Drunks" which contains mostly images of real
drunks),
| you could try and get permission by way of a release to show that image in
| that show from the person.  If they signed the release, chances are that
you
| would be off the hook for defamation or slander even if the person should
| later change their mind.  In short there are some occasions that a release
| might protect you from such legal actions.
| -----Original Message-----
| From: owner-filmscanners@halftone.co.uk
| [mailto:owner-filmscanners@halftone.co.uk]On Behalf Of Johnny Deadman
| Sent: Saturday, May 19, 2001 10:30 PM
| To: Filmscanners
| Subject: Re: filmscanners: OT: photographing on the street
|
|
| on 5/19/01 10:57 PM, Laurie Solomon at laurie@advancenet.net wrote:
|
| [re needing or not needing releases for 'art']
|
| > You do in the U.S. if the person is recognizable and you do not want to
| get
| > sued for invasion of privacy.
|
| There is no right to privacy in a public place by definition. We are
talking
| about street photography remember. Do you think Frank, Klein, Winogrand,
| Arbus et al got releases? I can tell you now they didn't. I don't know a
| single street photographer (and there are 500 on my list) who gets
releases.
| Harvey Stein (CONEY ISLAND, TWINS) said publicly in a seminar last week
that
| I attended that he has never got a release for a street photo. Commercial
| use is not generally understood to include books and print sales.
|
| Does US law really provide for someone to sue for invasion of privacy?
I've
| never heard of that. I would like to know more if it is true.
|
| Under French and Quebecois law things are different, which is why I don't
| photograph in France and Quebec.
|
| > If the subject is recognizable and your
| > artwork defames their reputation and /or character or implies something
| > untrue or that they find objectionable, you could be open for slander
and
| > defamation legal actions as well in the U.S. and maybe in Canada.
|
| Indeed, and a release won't help you with that.
|
| --
| John Brownlow
|
| http://www.pinkheadedbug.com
|
|




 




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