I got an email from Chris, a reader and past student, with some notes on shooting (and security) in public in Ottawa.
Since 911 many organizations have become more, erm, panicked about people taking photos. I have been ‘moved along’ from public places because I had a camera and was photographing.
It’s a tricky situation. Security is important but getting official permission to shoot is often overwhelmingly tough! I choose what to do about permissions depending on circumstances.
The photo below was taken on a bus service from Reykjavik to Iceland’s international airport.
- Did I ask permission? NO! They would have said a quick no.
- Is it causing any trouble? NO! Nobody is recognizable, there are no logos.
- I didn’t ask and I also didn’t make a big production of the shoot. I chose my seat knowing the photo I wanted and quietly shot with the camera in my lap.
Chris suggested a link he found that is a bit of a personal rant on security and photography in Ottawa.
Chris also suggests there are OCTranspo exemptions to transit photography and photographing Ottawa buses and transit when it is for personal use:
“Exemptions for PERSONAL use of camera equipment were posted by an OCTranspo Driver:
OC Transpo (Section 19, “General Prohibitions”)
(6) No person shall operate any camera, video recording device, movie camera or any similar device on transit property without the express written permission of the Director.
(7) Subsection (6) does not apply to the following:
a. the operation by a person of any camera, video recording device, movie camera or similar device on a transit vehicle where such operation is for personal use; or
b. the operation by a person of any camera, video recording device, movie camera or similar device on a transit station platform area where such operation is for personal use.”
It’s a tricky area! Take photos. Do good things. Be polite. Have fun.