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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Urban Life & Travel Talk
Thread started 25 Sep 2010 (Saturday) 17:16
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Becareful Photographing Water Towers

 
AB8ND
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Sep 25, 2010 17:16 |  #1

Man's 'nerdy' hobby lands him in hot water after taking photos of Kentwood water tower.
http://****/23volc4external link

Jack




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kendon
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Sep 27, 2010 10:00 |  #2

no offense, but sounds like a pretty dumb story to me. first, he could have given his name and reason to take pictures to the workers. i wouldn't like to do that either, but the second i feel harrassed by these people i would call the cops. not offering that they should be called, but call them myself. i am fairly sure that this would have helped to clear the situation.

imagine it being the other way around: he was taking pictures because he wanted to attack the water tower. if the workers had said "na, he's probably just some nerdy guy taking pics for fun" everybody would have a go at them now for not being careful/thoughtful enough...


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gjl711
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Sep 27, 2010 10:08 |  #3

kendon wrote in post #10986495external link
....imagine it being the other way around: he was taking pictures because he wanted to attack the water tower. if the workers had said "na, he's probably just some nerdy guy taking pics for fun" everybody would have a go at them now for not being careful/thoughtful enough...

I really believe that this is the root cause of most of the silliness that happens today. With all the lawyers cruising around just looking for someone to sue, one misstep can lead to years of legal problems and being dragged through the mud in the papers.


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12Rock
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Sep 27, 2010 10:11 |  #4

People like this drive me nuts ... we all know its a new world out here . These folks are just being safe , so answer the question and be done with , making this a big no story here keep moving. People use your common sense.




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gonzogolf
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Sep 27, 2010 10:12 |  #5

The officials said they werent concerned about the photo, but the reason he was taking it? The water tower is featured on the city website as a town landmark so one would imagine that its occasionally photographed. Sounds like a bunch of overzealous utility workers trying to add a little excitement to a boring day.




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SMP_Homer
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Sep 27, 2010 10:21 |  #6

so you think we should stop and ask every person we see with a camera taking a picture of something that could be a target?

If you're standing on public or your own private property - they can ask - you don't have to answer. Obviously the right approach once asked is to be polite and respectful of whoever is asking, even if they don't have any kind of authority - but if someone forces the issue, I'd stand my ground as long as I know I'm in the clear.

You have rights - and it seems more and more we have to stand up for this very basic of rights!


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75D
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Sep 27, 2010 10:30 as a reply to gjl711's post |  #7

Identifying himself and the reason for taking the picture would have been the correct thing to do. By his actions he brought suspicion on himself and he deserves whatever comes out of this incident.
You have to be somewhat out of touch not to realize that if you take a picture of a Public Utility you stand a good chance of being questioned by someone in authority or even a concrned citizen. Taking the attitude that it is none of their business will only lead to an escalation of the situation and you will always lose in the end.
Yes some people may say that it is my right to take pictures of what I want, the reality is times have changed and you have to accept it.
How are your right diminished if you, in a pleasant manner, tell them why you are taking the picture and where you live?
Just because you are a white person with a ponytail doesn't mean you're not a terrorist. Was it a middle east person who was convicted for the Oklahoma bombing?
We need to understand that the world has changed and accept that we should not react in a defensive manner when asked why we are taking a picture.


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e02937
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Sep 27, 2010 10:33 |  #8

12Rock wrote in post #10986548external link
People like this drive me nuts ... we all know its a new world out here . These folks are just being safe , so answer the question and be done with , making this a big no story here keep moving. People use your common sense.

Those Who Sacrifice Liberty For Security Deserve Neither.


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hawkeye60
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Sep 27, 2010 10:43 |  #9

I think it's absolutely ridiculous how authorities have somehow managed to link photography with terrorism.

Has there ever been one single terrorist attack who's source can be traced back to photography?


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John ­ the ­ Geek
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Sep 27, 2010 10:50 as a reply to SMP_Homer's post |  #10

I love the comments.

There is the slight possibility that I might just "blow them up" . . . . PHOTOGRAPHICALLY! (It's called "enlarging").

I'm going to shoot the water tower with my camera and blow it up to 16x20.

Someone also pointed out that he has the right to remain silent, especially to someone who does not have the authority to demand that info from him. I think I'd have called the cops myself.

=)


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gonzogolf
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Sep 27, 2010 10:52 |  #11

hawkeye60 wrote in post #10986762external link
I think it's absolutely ridiculous how authorities have somehow managed to link photography with terrorism.

Has there ever been one single terrorist attack who's source can be traced back to photography?

There was one case where a member of a terrorist cell was arrested in NY and was found to have photos he had taken of various potential targets. The authorities claimed that these were taken as part of a scouting mission.




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hawkeye60
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Sep 27, 2010 11:40 |  #12

gonzogolf wrote in post #10986810external link
There was one case where a member of a terrorist cell was arrested in NY and was found to have photos he had taken of various potential targets. The authorities claimed that these were taken as part of a scouting mission.

By source I meant that were it not for the photograph it could not have occured. As in the source of a terrorist attack was an explosive or a weapon, or plane, etc. Perhaps the word "source" was a poor choice.


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Todd ­ Lambert
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Sep 27, 2010 11:54 |  #13

Good for this guy to stand up. Most wouldn't, and that's the problem.

If you're going to force everyone to live by rules, then you have to follow them. It's that simple.

These workers do not have any right to treat someone like this. In all honestly, I'd be pushing for their removal/suspension from their jobs actually.


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Harm
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Sep 27, 2010 13:05 |  #14

Todd Lambert wrote in post #10987141external link
Good for this guy to stand up. Most wouldn't, and that's the problem.

If you're going to force everyone to live by rules, then you have to follow them. It's that simple.

These workers do not have any right to treat someone like this. In all honestly, I'd be pushing for their removal/suspension from their jobs actually.

I agree with you, Todd. As a foreigner in the US, and of a dark skin colour, I get the beady eye at me all the time, esp with a DSLR around town. But heck, there are hundreds of tourists each day with the same thing, but they don't get the stares. Talk about PC gone insane. Why not just shut the borders and close the internet and have the post office screen all mail if you can't take a photo even on public property.

The guy in the article, could potentially sue the town for aggressive behaviour, and could walk away with a sum of money that is paid for by the tax payer.

You can't take a photo of a mall, a water tower, a bridge, planes, roads, buildings, you name it. But all a terrorist needs to do is download google earth and hey presto, all the information is right there :) Stupid.


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gonzogolf
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Sep 27, 2010 13:16 |  #15

We had a situation here in Springfield Illinois a few years back. The local police and the security force were aggressively chasing and questioning anyone who was spotted taking photos of the coal fired powerplant on the shore of Lake Springfield. Each time they stopped someone it would appear in the paper, or the online edition of the newspapers website about someone being stopped for suspicious behavior. Given that the powerplant is visible from an interstate, and several miles of lake shore its a very public landmark and by no means a secret facility.

A local radio personality finally heard enough stories of security chasing photographers and called their bluff. He put on a turban (for exaggerated effect) and paraded outside the facility with several cameras. Security came out and he finally got them to admit publicly that its not illegal or even improper to photography the facility and to tacitly acknowledge that their previous efforts were overkill. Sometimes it takes an outrageous act to call attention to situations like this.




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