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Thread: Some question relating to law

  1. #1
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    Default Some question relating to law

    Well, hope some kind soul with law background or knowledge can help to answer this, thanks in advance.

    Ok, the situation is me and some frens of mine are planning to do a series of dv shots on some funny ideas, and one of our idea is to make a clips called "who is bad today".

    the idea is to place an expensive handphone "unattended" by owner on top of a study table among the study materials and bag in library(university) and with hidden dv camcorders in the adjacent tables: and see how long it last in the unattended state.
    Of course the handphone is arranged in a state that it is obvious that the owner forgot to bring along handphone and went for toilet, so left it on top of the table with those study materials intact.

    supposingly we would also be taking down footage of the person who happened to chance upon the handphone, and how he would react, either good or bad. (well, according to my experiance and what i observe in my university library, 5 minutes off from ur hp/notebooks/watch/valuables unattended and it is forever "bye bye" )

    the good side is the person who chance upon it will pass it to the librarians, as the bad side, can be varied responses.

    assume for the bad reactions, in the end we had our footages, we had the handphone back also.

    Question

    (1) if we don't press charges against the person and privately settle this issue by getting back the handphone, and in the end of the project, the footages of the varied responses of different persons recorded inside the dv are posted on a website dedicated for our project, are we against law?

    (2) if it is against law, what clauses it will be? (not getting the person agreement before it is posted as a public material? etc)

    (3) does marking and shading the person eyes area have any difference in law than showing the real scenes?

    (4) say, if the website server is hosted at a different country than singapore, does it has a different meaning?

    or any other things we should take note of?

    Thanks. constructive opinions welcomed.

    (p.s actually two fren of mine been losing their handphonese and notebooks before in the same library during exam periods. so the idea was raised by them and it is only one of the theme of dv footage we will be having for our graduation dv project. just to clarify )
    Last edited by cheechee; 30th April 2004 at 07:33 AM.

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    in anyway, putting hidden cam in public area is not legal... u have to apply permit i suppose. & by posting the clips on the net without the person's consent is going to get your arse sued esp its kinda making the person look bad. unless u are from the media.

    if u 'happen' to tape down the process is a totally different thing. if u purposely takes pic of those who happen to chance upon, den your purpose is quite vague... cos on 1 hand u are saying, for the 'fun' or for FYP, on another hand, you seem to be doing for the 'justice' which i am not sure if its the 'same' person going around taking ppls' phones.

    mayb u should consult your lecturer instead about taking such footage.
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    oh ya.... the person may even sue you for blackmailing for the Qn no1... backfire... u have intention to set a 'trap' for ppl to fall in & 'settle privately'
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    Quote Originally Posted by Del_CtrlnoAlt
    in anyway, putting hidden cam in public area is not legal... u have to apply permit i suppose. & by posting the clips on the net without the person's consent is going to get your arse sued esp its kinda making the person look bad. unless u are from the media.

    if u 'happen' to tape down the process is a totally different thing. if u purposely takes pic of those who happen to chance upon, den your purpose is quite vague... cos on 1 hand u are saying, for the 'fun' or for FYP, on another hand, you seem to be doing for the 'justice' which i am not sure if its the 'same' person going around taking ppls' phones.

    mayb u should consult your lecturer instead about taking such footage.
    oh ya.... the person may even sue you for blackmailing for the Qn no1... backfire... u have intention to set a 'trap' for ppl to fall in & 'settle privately'
    hi del+ctrlnoalt
    thanks for the swift reply and suggestion.

    just to clarify that the "project" is actually part of our final year life dv footage done by a group of frens, so is not a university fyp project. and for q1, is of course if he walks away with the hp, we cannot just make it a gift, must claim back . can further define what is the area of inforcement of blackmailing? "settle privately" i meant we will not be getting anything else but just the handphone back, and no threat for money or further action to bring him/her to authority is taken, does that falls into act of blackmailing? (from singapore law aspect)
    or do you mean that to avoid the "blackmailing" suspicion, we should turn him/her to the authority(by getting the campus security and calling in the police)and claim back our handphone from the authority? will that be better than just getting back our handphone without pressing any charges?

    and for the permit thing on shooting in public area, from our previous discussion with the library authority, camcorder/camera are allowed inside but cannot record other people at their place of activity without the consent of the person involved.
    so, if the shooting is directed at the place of activity of our group member, where the handphone is left, does that means that the person actually evades into the place of activity of our group member and thereby it is legal? coz one can argue that i am shooting at my own place of activity? so can we argue that we 'happen' to tape down the process?

    >if u purposely takes pic of those who happen to chance upon, den your >purpose is quite vague... cos on 1 hand u are saying, for the 'fun' or for >FYP, on another hand, you seem to be doing for the 'justice' which i am not >sure if its the 'same' person going around taking ppls' phones.
    just to make sure, is there any clause in singapore law to be interpreted upon the "vague purpose" thing? like which clause should we look into? thanks.

    Thanks, and please keep the suggestion flowing in. cheers.
    Last edited by cheechee; 30th April 2004 at 08:35 AM.

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    just looking at the possibilities... cos u never know what others may think...

    regards to the permit thing, your 'goal' is kinda misleading... hehe... cos on 1 hand u say u taping the possible 'culprit' but u telling the auth that u are taping your frens... but its hidden, motive vague... the 'who knows wat u thinking' comes in... cos u are not acting on the objectives. should anything arises its kinda hard for u to explain. lets say... wat if the 'person' accidentally do something 'funny' like expose her shirt? den sue u for taking her expose pics, but on contrary u told the library that you are taking clips of your frens & not others... double trouble. same goes for the blackmailing... cos the person may not or use to their advantage of the possible misuse of the clips. there is the 'who knows wat others might perceive' factor...

    mayb i am just pessimistic.. hehe... but good luck & hope to get to see your clips!
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    I think it is totally unethical for you to video the process.

    It is the same as the police ambushing @ Geylang and waiting to arrest those who patronize the illegal pros, instead of arresting those illegal pros.

    By leaving the handphone unattended on the table, you are intentionally enticing people to commit petty crime. Since you intentionally left it there, you would not be able to have it back if someone keeps it.

    And as mentioned previously, you might be sue-ed for black-mail.

    My advise, don't do such a thing. You are skating on extremely thin ice.

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    Cheechee: have PMed you, hope that helps...

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    hi chee chee! long time no see!

    interesting idea you have there how ever I got a better idea, why don't you set the bait in a public place rather than the library? just pick some table at the canteen or whatever. (maybe sports complex?) if its within the library you have a lot of complex issues to work out, cuz its then theft within the library and thus falls into school jurisdiction.

    I think its a cool idea tho, and I think tho its its baiting but hey the fella wants to steal so its entirely his fault. cuz its not like you left the phone by itself, you left it with books and files so its obvious the owner will come back to get it. legally i don't see what's wrong, you can always just say you like to shoot a video of your phone on a table for hours, no one CAN fault you on that, even if they think you have other motives they cannot fault your statement. if it so happens you catch someone in the video then hey its not your fault, cuz you didn't plan for it (its not like you invited the person to steal your phone).

    BUT I think the legal prob starts when you publicise the video. not sure of your rights, but I think you can black out his eyes or something to a deg that he is not easily recognisable and get away with it. tt's what newspapers do afterall. but I suggest you black out his eyes, put it on a foreign web host, and do NOT put any references to your school on the page. and of cuz share with us here on CS! heh...

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    but I think you can black out his eyes or something to a deg that he is not easily recognisable and get away with it. tt's what newspapers do afterall.
    Newspaper do that because they have a moral responsibility to report the incident. AND you do not see reporters ambushing at a corner and enticing someone to commit a crime.

    The newspaper and the above-mentioned project are all coming at a different direction. Thus you cannot claim that because the newspaper is doing it, thus you assume it is alright for you application as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoppinghippo
    hi chee chee! long time no see!

    interesting idea you have there how ever I got a better idea, why don't you set the bait in a public place rather than the library? just pick some table at the canteen or whatever. (maybe sports complex?) if its within the library you have a lot of complex issues to work out, cuz its then theft within the library and thus falls into school jurisdiction.

    I think its a cool idea tho, and I think tho its its baiting but hey the fella wants to steal so its entirely his fault. cuz its not like you left the phone by itself, you left it with books and files so its obvious the owner will come back to get it. legally i don't see what's wrong, you can always just say you like to shoot a video of your phone on a table for hours, no one CAN fault you on that, even if they think you have other motives they cannot fault your statement. if it so happens you catch someone in the video then hey its not your fault, cuz you didn't plan for it (its not like you invited the person to steal your phone).

    BUT I think the legal prob starts when you publicise the video. not sure of your rights, but I think you can black out his eyes or something to a deg that he is not easily recognisable and get away with it. tt's what newspapers do afterall. but I suggest you black out his eyes, put it on a foreign web host, and do NOT put any references to your school on the page. and of cuz share with us here on CS! heh...
    the way u say it sounds like its right... but i think ethically... you are wrong, cos if u set your objectives out, y do you when problem arises change your stand? if your purpose is to make a video of such incidences, then when problem arise, u shift the perspective to a coincidence... doesn't it sound rather unprofessional, esp when u will be uploading for the world, so you are going to put the page title as, coincidence or project?

    if just masking the face seem ok, then i think we just mask every photo we take & get away with everything. what if someone sue u for the clips, wants the original, u say u deleted & gets away with it? i think unless your clips is totally black, any place can be identified with the person's estimate features, mayb who knows... someone may say... HEY, DOESN'T THAT LOOK LIKE XXX?
    and reporters have a social responsibility to mask the pics before showing to public to protect the people involved, and i don't think they did that for 'project', its more of a report on the incidences. And i do think that, consent have been taken from those involved by the reporter before publishing any photos or clips. even those candid camera shows on tv, i suppose they have consent from the person before they are released. and to any normal person... if u are filmed 'stealing', will u wan your footage to be placed for the entire world to see? so when u get the phone back from the person, will u tell the guy you are going to place this clip on the net with or without consent?
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  11. #11

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    gosh what have I stirred up? let me clear the misunderstanding...

    my point is that chee chee can go ahead and do it if he wants but I think its tricky when it comes to publicising (his original question was if its legal not if its moral btw). And I"m saying if he really wants to put up a web page then what I had suggested would be the safest thing to do. (I"m not asking him to put up on a web page or publicise it, distinct difference)


    Del_CtrlnoAlt: I agree with you on the moral issues, its not nice, may lead to wrong pple being identified, etc etc. As I have said above, I"m not advocating it, just suggesting ways of doing it BUT having said that, I disagree with "if u are filmed 'stealing', will u wan your footage to be placed for the entire world to see? so when u get the phone back from the person, will u tell the guy you are going to place this clip on the net with or without consent?" cuz I think if you are caught stealing on film (whether its this project or any other incidents) then as ugly as it is for the whole world to see, its your prob for stealing in the first place. dowan pple to see, then don't steal! simple. its like pple who got caught for embezzling, rape, etc etc, why do their faces get published in the newspapers for all to see? do you empathise with the rapist? "orrr shucks.. look, now EVERYONE will know what he did, poor thing" (note: I"m only talking about whether its right to publicise wrong doers, not saying its ok to bait pple, that's a whole issue by itself), btw rem when Corrective Work Order came about? rem the photos in the newspapers? is littering any more criminal than stealing a handphone?

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by meepokman
    Newspaper do that because they have a moral responsibility to report the incident. AND you do not see reporters ambushing at a corner and enticing someone to commit a crime.

    The newspaper and the above-mentioned project are all coming at a different direction. Thus you cannot claim that because the newspaper is doing it, thus you assume it is alright for you application as well.
    I agree on the baiting part, there's both right and wrong views to it, won't touch on it but I think you are referring to perhaps more "mainstream" and less sensational newspapers. there are also magazines (paparazzi shots) and sensational newspapers which evidently do engage in close to baited incidents. eg. rem last time a certain papers published an article on gay activities at the infamous Gay Beach at ECP? with pictures and graphic descriptions to boot? isn't it like baiting, cuz you KNOW what goes on there, so you go there and WAIT for something to happen? plus the news is pure sensational crap and serves little purpose unlike pple doing crimes like stealing?

    Incidentally too, unless the accused gets a court order barring media publicity, else he gets his name and face splashed across the newspapers even if he eventually gets acquitted. but his scarred reputation remains. isn't this the same or worse?

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    isn't there something in the law called Entrapment? meaning you pay out a trap specifically inducing someone to carry out a crime, which is not legal AFAIK...

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    hoppinghippo i din mean to 'attack' or flame u. sorry if i seem directed at u.

    anyway, i think for the clips to be placed for all to see if the person really 'steal' the phone is abit too harsh. Cos in a way, we are not any saint nor are we any law enforcers. even crime watch does put a reenactment when showing without using the real footage. in anyway, when u put the clips on the net, without his consent is already an offense on you, irregardless of the fact he did or did not commit the simulated 'crime'. Can you confirm that the guy is 'purely intentional stealing' or just happen to passby, take the phone & intent to call the ppl in his list so as to return the phone? so in anyway we are not judge to any situation, if its a mistake, you put the clip on the net showing him taking the phone away and tarnish his reputation, isn't it kinda unfair to him when in fact he is doing a good deed? we think differently, when a person holding another person's phone, there is 101 reasons we give... so when u tape it down, will u when confronting him be convinced that he is actually trying to return the owner the phone or will u just paste a sign guilty on him & say he is a thief?

    i think i think too far... hmm i think let the thread starter decide... like i am pouring cold water on him now...
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  15. #15
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    Actually, unlike in US, the Singapore position generally doesn't recognise the defence of entrapment, as the Singapore courts affirmed the English position taken by the House of Lords in R v Sang and which was affirmed by the Court of Appeal in PP v Rozman bin Jusoh and other cases. Entrapment may be relevant in mitigation of sentencing though.

    however, the proposed plans do bring complex issues to the table, and you probably need to seek specialist advice if you are intent on your course of action

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry
    isn't there something in the law called Entrapment? meaning you pay out a trap specifically inducing someone to carry out a crime, which is not legal AFAIK...

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    Quote Originally Posted by vince123123
    Actually, unlike in US, the Singapore position generally doesn't recognise the defence of entrapment, as the Singapore courts affirmed the English position taken by the House of Lords in R v Sang and which was affirmed by the Court of Appeal in PP v Rozman bin Jusoh and other cases. Entrapment may be relevant in mitigation of sentencing though.
    ahhhh.... you learn something new everyday.

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    Here in the UK, I've seen TV shows like this before, eg the show producers leave booby trapped cars (cars that don't move, makes lots of noise, falls apart etc) parked in shady neighbourhoods and left it there to be 'stolen', or leave a truck filled with goods unattended, wait for the thief to go in, and then lock them in the truck which turns out to be a gigantic mobile cage and parade the guy in the cage around the city.

    Not to sure what sort of legal ramifications are involved or even if the thieves were prosecuted in the end...sorry!

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    wat about those comedy like "Just for laugh" ? They also hide the camera somehwhere and show the viewers.
    Objection !!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ninelives
    wat about those comedy like "Just for laugh" ? They also hide the camera somehwhere and show the viewers.
    erm, they don't shoot them doing illegal things. just silly things.

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    thanks larry for bringing up the law of entrapment issue.
    Been searching using googles, not sure if US law is similiar to singapore law?

    http://www.lawcollective.org/article.php?id=56
    Quote:
    Most people imagine that when an undercover law enforcement officer instigates a crime, that’s entrapment. Unfortunately, “entrapment” is one of those words that has a much narrower definition in a court of law than in common speech. To argue at trial that a criminal defendant was entrapped into committing a crime, the defense attorney has to get permission from the judge in advance. She has to show that the defendant
    (1) had no inclination or tendency to commit the crime, and
    (2) that the law enforcement agent(s) exerted considerable psychological pressure to get the defendant to break the law.



    http://www.lectlaw.com/def/e024.htm

    In slightly different words: Even though someone may have [sold drugs], as charged by the government, if it was the result of entrapment then he is not guilty. Government agents entrapped him if three things occurred:

    - First, the idea for committing the crime came from the government agents and not from the person accused of the crime.

    - Second, the government agents then persuaded or talked the person into committing the crime. Simply giving him the opportunity to commit the crime is not the same as persuading him to commit the crime.

    - And third, the person was not ready and willing to commit the crime before the government agents spoke with him.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    But in this case, it is singapore, and our position is not of the government government agents. So anyone else knows what is the exact position?

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