Four Important Reads on People’s Right to Record

It’s been a big week for news and debate about press freedom and citizen’s right to record. Catch up on some of the key developments below.

Maryland ACLU Educates Local Police

"Highlighting recent court rulings and an unprecedented legal statement on citizens’ rights to record police actions issued by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Maryland is contacting local law enforcement agencies throughout Maryland, urging them to establish clear policies and training to ensure that officers conform to the Constitution they are sworn to protect."

DC Police Get New Clarity on Citizen’s Right to Record

"District police cannot interfere with citizens as they photograph or videotape officers performing their jobs in public, according to a new directive issued by Chief Cathy L. Lanier as part of settlement in a civil lawsuit. The six-page general order, similar to one published by police in Baltimore in November, warns officers that ‘a bystander has the right under the First Amendment to observe and record members in the public discharge of their duties.’"

Questions Remain About Press Freedom at the Political Conventions

"Weighing security concerns and First Amendment rights has become a quadrennial issue in cities hosting national political conventions. While both major parties’ conventions have become targets of protests, the Republican gatherings have involved larger demonstrations and resulted in numerous lawsuits by people who have said that they were wrongly arrested."

Drones, Privacy and the Future of Photojournalism

"Technological advancements –from the printing press to radio to videotape to livestreams and tweets -have always been used to make images and information more widely available and instantly accessible. I firmly believe that as unmanned drones become more prevalent, reliable, and affordable, and as high definition cameras become smaller, the demand for drone use will quickly grow and eventually surpass more traditional forms of aerial news coverage."

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