NPPA Asking DC To Change Policy

Even though the Washington Post assured we had nothing to worry about regarding a policy that allows police to arrest photographers who spend more than five minutes at a single location taking pictures, the National Press Photographers Association wasn’t too convinced.

So earlier today, Mickey Osterreicher, general consul for the NPPA, sent a letter to the city’s district attorney, asking him repeal the current policy and offering to work with the city in establishing a policy that is not so vague and broad where it could subject anybody with a camera to arrest.

The policy is meant to target street photographers who prey on tourists, according to the Washington Post, which states that “as long as you don’t make a living hustling tourists for snapshots, you can snap away without keeping an eye on your watch.”

But we’ve all seen cops abuse laws in the books to harass innocent citizens with cameras.

Osterreicher, who has sent countless letters to various agencies in the last few months, working with several departments to revise their photo policies, stated the following in this morning’s letter:

Given the recent penchant for police to interfere with, harass and in many cases arrest photographers (i.e. D.C. Taxicab Commission meeting), the NPPA is concerned that these infringing regulations would provide the police with unbridled discretion to abridge the rights of photographers covering such events as “Occupy Wall Street” or any situation involving “photography of any person(s)” or lasting longer than five (5) minutes in any one location. Nationwide, photographers are increasingly subject to harassment by police officers, who, under color of law, cite safety and security concerns as a pretext to chill free speech and expression or to impede the ability to gather news. In that regard I would direct your attention to a recent decision by the First Circuit where the court recognized “the fundamental and virtually self-evident nature of the First Amendment’s protections” of the “right to film government officials or matters of public interest in public space.”1
It is our position that these facially defective regulations will only further contribute to the erroneous belief by law enforcement that public photography may be arbitrarily limited or curtailed. We  therefore respectfully request that these regulations be repealed immediately. In the alternative, we propose to work with your office to draft revised language that would be more narrowly tailored to serve a substantial government interest as a reasonable time, place and manner restriction on commercial photography.

Please send stories and tips to carlosmiller@magiccitymedia.com

Even though the Washington Post assured we had nothing to worry about regarding a policy that allows police to arrest photographers who spend more than five minutes at a single location taking pictures, the National Press Photographers Association wasn’t too convinced.

So earlier today, Mickey Osterreicher, general consul for the NPPA, sent a letter to the city’s district attorney, asking him repeal the current policy and offering to work with the city in establishing a policy that is not so vague and broad where it could subject anybody with a camera to arrest.

The policy is meant to target street photographers who prey on tourists, according to the Washington Post, which states that “as long as you don’t make a living hustling tourists for snapshots, you can snap away without keeping an eye on your watch.”

But we’ve all seen cops abuse laws in the books to harass innocent citizens with cameras.

Osterreicher, who has sent countless letters to various agencies in the last few months, working with several departments to revise their photo policies, stated the following in this morning’s letter:

Given the recent penchant for police to interfere with, harass and in many cases arrest photographers (i.e. D.C. Taxicab Commission meeting), the NPPA is concerned that these infringing regulations would provide the police with unbridled discretion to abridge the rights of photographers covering such events as “Occupy Wall Street” or any situation involving “photography of any person(s)” or lasting longer than five (5) minutes in any one location. Nationwide, photographers are increasingly subject to harassment by police officers, who, under color of law, cite safety and security concerns as a pretext to chill free speech and expression or to impede the ability to gather news. In that regard I would direct your attention to a recent decision by the First Circuit where the court recognized “the fundamental and virtually self-evident nature of the First Amendment’s protections” of the “right to film government officials or matters of public interest in public space.”1
It is our position that these facially defective regulations will only further contribute to the erroneous belief by law enforcement that public photography may be arbitrarily limited or curtailed. We  therefore respectfully request that these regulations be repealed immediately. In the alternative, we propose to work with your office to draft revised language that would be more narrowly tailored to serve a substantial government interest as a reasonable time, place and manner restriction on commercial photography.

Please send stories and tips to carlosmiller@magiccitymedia.com

Support our Mission

Help us build a database of bad cops

For almost 15 years, PINAC News has remained active despite continuous efforts by the government and Big Tech to shut us down by either arresting us for lawful activity or by restricting access to our readers under the pretense that we write about “social issues.”

Since we are forbidden from discussing social issues on social media, we have created forums on our site to allow us to fulfill our mission with as little restriction as possible. We welcome our readers to join our forums and support our mission by either donating, volunteering or both.

Our plan is to build a national database of bad cops obtained from public records maintained by local prosecutors. The goal is to teach our readers how to obtain these lists to ensure we cover every city, county and state in the country.

After all, the government has made it clear it will not police the police so the role falls upon us.

It will be our most ambitious project yet but it can only be done with your help.

But if we succeed, we will be able to keep innocent people out of prison.

Please make a donation below or click on side tab to learn more about our mission.

Subscribe to PINAC

Bypass Big Tech censorship.

Carlos Millerhttps://pinacnews.com
Editor-in-Chief Carlos Miller spent a decade covering the cop beat for various newspapers in the Southwest before returning to his hometown Miami and launching Photography is Not a Crime aka PINAC News in 2007. He also published a book, The Citizen Journalist's Photography Handbook, which is available on Amazon.

Leave a Reply

- Advertisement -

Latest articles