ACLU Launches ‘Know Your Rights’ Photography Guide

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Just a few weeks after the Long Beach Police Department in California made headlines across the internet (and in real life) for their policy of allowing the detainment of photographers who were taking photos of what an officer might find a subject “with no apparent esthetic value,” and continuing the long-running movement for photographer’s rights, which received some larger than usual press when Grant Smith held a protest concerning the matter in the UK last year, now the American Civil Liberties Union has gotten involved, assembling a resource on their site entitled “Know Your Rights: Photographers.” Launched just before the weekend, the site aims to lay out the facts to both picture takers and the authorities, offering reminders such as “Police may not delete your photographs or video under any circumstances” and “When you are on private property, the property owner may set rules about the taking of photographs.” Certainly a valuable thing to look over should you be the type who wanders a bit off the beaten path when photographing, someone who enjoys a First Amendment challenge, or for an officer unclear as to the ins and outs of the legality of photography. If you fit into any of those categories, it might even be a smart bookmark to have on your phone.