The photography site for sore eyes. With extra writing because I'm also a writer.
Now there’s something to get the stadium security guards in a tiz.The general rule: You are not allowed to photograph at major sporting events. So what’s going to happen at the London Olympics when thousands of people will be trying to capture a memento of their once-in-a-lifetime experience at the Olympic Stadium? Well, this week London 2012 bosses U-turned on their wholesale photography ban to a ‘sorry, there is no ban on photography’ – as long as you’ve got a crap camera.
Sometimes there are strict rules, as in the Premier League who only allow licenced photographers (they issue the licences) to photograph at football matches. All other photography is banned inside the ground.Of course the days when you were an odd photographer in a football stadium (i.e. the only person in the crowd with a camera) are long gone. A crowd of 75,000 inside a Premier League match means around 75,000 cameras will also be in the ground. Everyone has a camera in their mobile phone these days. Hundreds of images and videos appear online during all major sporting events. The point is this: You can’t enforce a ban on photography at public events. If they asked everyone to put their mobile phone in a box on their way in, the queue on the way out to pick them up would cause more mayhem than student kettling. I’ve always found this rule distasteful, especially if you’re a tourist going to a match with a camera and having to face the prospect of not getting in because you’re carrying a fairly chunky SLR. It’s not like you can go and hide it in a hedge and then retrieve it after the match. And so we come to the Olympics. This is what they said: “The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games’s policy is that SLR cameras will be allowed into venues. We have no intention at all of restricting compact high-zoom cameras. ‘We have yet to finalise all our spectator filming and photography guidelines. Like many other large sporting events and previous Games, one possibility is that there may be restrictions around spectators using large (in size) lenses and tripods, simply because of the impact this can have on the viewing experience for other spectators sitting close by. This is all work in progress, and guidelines are under discussion.” At Wimbledon (where Olympic tennis will be played) there is a long-standing rule that any lens longer than one foot is not allowed. A similar restriction ‘if it’s longer than a foot you’re not coming in’ is likely to apply next summer for the entire Olympics. Make sure you know the rules, so when they try to stop you taking photos you can say, “Excuse me, mister, you’re bloody wrong.”