I am sure any legitimate photographer who in recent times has had problems taking photographs of public buildings and their surroundings on our streets, will give a sigh of relief at the change in the implementation of Section 44 Of The Terrorism Act 2000.
Initially a European Court Of Human Rights ruling, and yesterday action from the Home Secretary have acted to restrict its use to situations where Police have ‘reasonable’ suspicions of terrorist activity.
To be honest I have sympathy all round on this one. Photographers professional or otherwise, should be able to go about their photography without fear of being stopped or worse by the authorities. But many would be all to quick to point the finger if Police fail to keep on top of the terrorist threat. The Police and Pro photographers both have jobs to do, but I for one would not swap mine for theirs. Common sense and courtesy all round from photographers and Police officers should quickly resolve the situation to everyones satisfaction.
I have over the years worked with Police officers a lot, both as a photographer and also as a ‘technical’ expert during my time with Nikon Uk Ltd. So I have a respect for the job they have to do, both conventional officers and specific Police photographers.
I have more of a problem with ‘uniformed’ security guards that try and stop people taking shots in even very obviously ‘tourist’ spots, claiming this or that, or suggesting that you have to have written permission and pay for a ‘pass’, but dont start me on that one:).