Legal landscape of street photography in Singapore


Nov 28, 2012
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#1
This is probably an old topic. I have done my homework. There are some discussions online. I have added the links below for references.
http://www.***********.com.sg/forum...phy-in-Public-and-Private-Places-in-Singapore
http://www.clubsnap.com/forums/showthread.php?t=870741

Both discussions occurred before the protection from harassment act came into effects in 2014. I am not a law guy, but I have briefly gone through the clauses. My question is if someone can accuse me of harassment or stalking if I randomly snap a photo of him/her on the street. We can extend the discussion to any public areas. I am keen to find out the new legal landscape of street photography in Singapore. Please kindly share your insights here.

However, this discussion is not about if it is rude to take a photo of someone without seeking permission. While some prefer staged street portrait, some may prefer people in their candid status. Let's leave the choices to the photographers.
 

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catchlights

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Sep 27, 2004
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#2
you will get better answers from PDPC,
and PDPC will explain all you need to know about PDAP,
but at the same time, they will also tell you to consult your own lawyer if you have any further questions.

AFAIK, no lawyer will post any legal advice online, so whatever opinion on such issue you find online, you are on your own responsibility if you want to follow suit.
 

UncleFai

Senior Member
Mar 10, 2010
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#4
in short,
ask a real lawyer in face to face.
I think no one can say for sure... till the courts get the first landmark case... then things will clarify. So who prepared to be the guinea pig for the good of the other photographers?
 

kandinsky

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Apr 26, 2008
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#5
My question is if someone can accuse me of harassment or stalking if I randomly snap a photo of him/her on the street.
They sure can. Anyone can possibly accuse you of anything, lol. Question is whether they can prove it.

In the context of the act you are talking about, I imagine if they had a good enough lawyer to help argue that your actions did cause them "harassment, alarm or distress", they would have a case? You would need your lawyer to help argue that you believe your actions were reasonable. Who would win that argument? I dunno, not a lawyer :p
 

Nov 28, 2012
329
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16
Singapore
#6
Thanks for the inputs. Just to clarify, there is no lawsuit here. The purpose of this thread is to help people shooting in the street know their rights and restrictions.
 

Bluesubm6

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Feb 29, 2016
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#7
Interesting terms, "harassment" and "stalking". If you take a random photo, how does that fit into either term?

On the other hand, if you take several, or a series of photos of one random individual, that could be construed as either one or the other.

The intent of the photographer should dictate the decorum - be polite and ask for permission when taking random individuals (alone or a group, especially if clearly identifiable).

I think press photographers have guidelines to follow, since their work is likely to go on newsprint or other media. You could look up the media authority guidelines (or ask a press photog) as a matter of interest.

Of course, if you take a random photo and the subject asks you to delete it, please do so as a courtesy.

This is just my opinion - I could be wrong, so caveat pretium!
 

Mar 10, 2007
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#8
As catchlight posted in #2, the PDPA is the clearest document to refer to for issues relating to privacy issues when taking photographs. For more detail or specific cases, I guess one has to refer to a lawyer or check up an actual trial case. Anything else would probably be an opinion. The accusation of harassment and stalking is not a 'legal' issue unless a case is filed for that. However, it is a moot point if the accuser is really angry about a photo taken without his permission and he just want to express his anger towards the photographer.

I have posted the link to the PDA many times. Here it is again. PDA Extract

It may not give you the answer but at least you know where the boundaries are.
 

Nov 28, 2012
329
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16
Singapore
#9
Kermitfm, thank you for sharing the PDA extract. Great guidelines.
 

catchlights

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#11
Are you available for meet up? :p
I am just too lazy to read the fine prints. :dunno:

Not sure what can I help? I am not a lawyer, not in a position to explain on any legal matter, whatever I said here is only my personal opinion. :)


12. Legal ownership - Each message posted is owned by and is the opinion of the original poster. Neither ClubSNAP nor its owners or moderators are legally responsible for anything posted on these forums.
http://www.clubsnap.com/forums/faq.php
 

ellery

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Jan 29, 2002
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#12
Bro may be he just want cheaper advice like one cup coffee can for 200 questions.
 

JacePhoto

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Oct 1, 2007
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#14
Hi, I just wrote an article about the application of the Personal Data Protection Act of 2012 in relation to photography. You can check it out here: http://www.riskcheng.com/blog/2016/8/26/the-legalities-of-photography-in-singapore-part-1-privacy
Interesting read.

I hate people who take my photographs in the name of art (photography).

Nowadays, the trend is to go to under developed countries to take pictures of the people there because they don't know their rights.
 

RhysCheng

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Feb 4, 2011
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#15
Interesting read.

I hate people who take my photographs in the name of art (photography).

Nowadays, the trend is to go to under developed countries to take pictures of the people there because they don't know their rights.
Have to agree with you. Even in times when our actions may be legal, it is still fundamental that we adhere to ethics and respect our subjects, be it a person, an animal or structure.
 

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