Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/09/07

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Private property and buildings
From: "Ted Grant" <>
Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2001 10:00:05 -0700
References: <> <> <004401c137b2$496a63a0$6afa0441@laurelhome>

Jim Laurel wrote:
>>> It's disturbing how many of us have had these experiences, especially in
the US.  I'll add my stories to the fray.<<<<<<

Hi Jim,
The disturbing part of the related experiences for me is,  "that they have
taken place in the United States of America!" This is the country seen by
nations of the world as the complete country of freedom of citizens and yet
we've read many tales of how those "free citizens " appear to be so paranoid
of cameras and pictures being taken.

My own "challenged by" took place in a fishing village near New Orleans a
few years ago, took me completely by surprise, that for a moment I feared
some injury the way the chap was going on. My only momentary saving grace
was, I showed him my passport and drivers license with my pictures and I was
a visitor to his country and taking tourist pictures.

It calmed him for a moment as he read,  then responded.... "you government
guys can fake anything you want, get the hell out of here!"

So it was game over, I high tailed it out of there.

Many of us who've traveled abroad and even in some of the most troubled
countries have never had similar experience while shooting. Not to say some
haven't, but as we see here most of the comments reflect an attitude in the
US of, "fear, paranoia or what?" by it's residents when a camera is pointed
in their direction, even though they are not the centre of attraction.

As your incident in Seattle. Quite amazing!

> About four years ago, I was photographing a street corner just opposite
> Seattle's Pike Place market.  I wasn't photographing anyone in particular,
> just the crowd scene.  Next, this woman comes running up to me screaming
> "What right do you have to take pictures of Native Americans?  You should
> ask permission!  You have no right to disrespect Native Americans like
> this!"

I wonder if USA members have any idea why ?  And please guys, this need not
become some bashing thing.

Ted Grant Photography Limited
- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim Laurel" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, September 07, 2001 8:32 AM
Subject: Re: [Leica] Private property and buildings

  I looked at her quizzically, and asked her what she was talking
> about.  "What Native Americans?  I'm just taking a photo of the street
> corner."  She became even more irrational, which made it hard for me to
> understand her, but I did manage to catch that her father was standing
> across the street, near the corner.  I could barely see him, much less
> what he looked like, but she persisted.  I just told her she was out of
> mind and walked away.  I left her there, cursing.
> At Dave Harvey's photojournalism workshop in Santa Fe, most of us got
> out of at least one place or another for taking photos.  A Danish friend
> was taking the class happened to see a police officer stopping a car for
> speeding.  He rushed over and asked the driver of the vehicle if he could
> take some photos.  The guy consented, and Claus started shooting.  The
> Police officer immediately tried to shoo him away, but Claus countered
> he was aware that US law permitted him to photograph the scene, as it was
> a public road.  The officer knew he was right and let him continue.
> I've always found the US a difficult place to photograph.  Many people are
> quite paranoid and assume the worst when a stranger takes thier picture.
> --Jim

Replies: Reply from "Mxsmanic" <> (Re: [Leica] Private property and buildings)
Reply from "SonC (Sonny Carter)" <> (Re: [Leica] Private property and buildings)
In reply to: Message from matt kollasch <> ([Leica] Private property and buildings)
Message from "Jim Laurel" <> (Re: [Leica] Private property and buildings)