Several years ago I was the On-Line Editor of a major emergency services newspaper, and their GM/Editor for the California print edition. Many times I would get a panic call from correspondents informing me that they had snapped a photo of someone or something, and threats of a lawsuit or arrest was implied or imminent.
Usually assuring the caller that we were still in the United States of America, the government wasn’t overthrown the previous night, and the Constitution and Bill of Rights were still in full force had a calming effect and set things back on the right track. However, lacking in legal skills I was determined to find someone who had those skills, and had a love of photography as well. Fast forward to 2012.
Since then I have found two very notable attorneys that I know of specializing in photographers legal rights in this country; Carolyn E. Wright and Bert P. Krages. Both offer educational (not advice) articles on their respective websites, on your rights as a photographer. Both are also accomplished photographers in their own right. There is also one other advocate of your rights that I always seem to forget when discussing photographer rights, and that is the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
Krages, Wright, and the ACLU all have excellent articles and links to valuable resources on their websites. You can download the PDFs and keep a copy in your camera bag.
San Diego based Photographer Oliver Asis, a leader with the San Diego SmugMug User Group, recently sent out a posting and a link to the group’s Facebook page on just this topic. This is the YouTube video created by the ACLU, about Photographers Rights. Cute and to the point.