New York photographer harassed for taking pictures in "wrong direction"
Just when you thought it was safe to take pictures again in New York City comes this story brought to us by War on Photography.
On the Fourth of July, as spectators prepared to see the fireworks show, a photographer that goes by maisa_nyc on Flickr asked a group of officers if he could set up in an “deserted stretch” on 11th Avenue near 34th Street. I’m astonished that he even found a deserted stretch of anything in Manhattan but I am not a local.
The officers nodded their approval. So set up his tripod, plopped himself down in a chair and realized the sun was setting directly into his face. So he turned his chair, then started snapping photos of the buildings illuminated by the setting sun, which I’ve experienced to be amazing light.
Then a cop walked up to him and starts asking the usual dumb questions as to why is taking pictures of whatever he happens to be taking pictures of. The photographer answers all his questions, which apparently satisfy the officer. But that didn’t stop the officer from departing with these words.
“Well, if you keep taking pictures in the wrong direction, don’t be surprised if someone else comes by to ask you for your ID.”
Obviously, this officer has not read the newly released operations order from the NYPD that explains that photographers are not terrorists.
If any other photographers have had issues with NYPD, please don’t hesitate to contact attorney Gerald Cohen, who helps sponsor this site and has a proven track record in fighting for photographers’ rights.