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Thoughts about travel photography involving people

Thoughts about travel photography involving people

Old Jan 16th, 2015, 07:27 AM
  #41  
 
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Great solution, thursdaysd. Let's agree that wearing a mask signals that photos are forbidden. Eliminates the intrusive need to ask.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 07:36 AM
  #42  
 
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And it would give me an excuse to buy one of those beautiful Venetian masks. (Except that might lead to more photos!)
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 08:56 AM
  #43  
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OK, I just found this and now I am really creeped out.

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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 09:38 AM
  #44  
 
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I'm still struggling to understand what the concern about facial recognition software here is. Unless you're a member of the FBI or another law enforcement agency, the software your camera is loaded with (or even the FR capabilities of iPhoto or Facebook) are limited solely to a database of people you've self-identified via tagging (people you've taken multiple photos of over time and identified by name). Even Google Glass does not randomly identify people in the street that you walk past. So let's at least get our technology arguments based in logic before misinformation is put out there.

If your friends are snapping photos of you and you get tagged on Facebook, then, yes, it's hard to stay anonymous (unless you easily change your settings to not allow for auto-tagging) -- but the random lady in Indonesia carrying fruit on her head...I don't think she needs to worry about popping up on your Facebook feed with her name attached. Technology is amazing, but it's not that miraculous (yet.)
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 11:13 AM
  #45  
 
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And how much of that tagging data do you seriously think is limited to your own datasets? I am sure FB and Google are also busily collecting it, not to mention the NSA.

I don't have, nor have any intention of getting, a FB account, but I don't know that that stops someone else posting a photo of me and tagging it.

I found this interesting: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2...al-capability/

What the government can do today will be available to private companies tomorrow and the public the day after.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 12:12 PM
  #46  
 
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As someone who sometimes takes thousands of photos on a trip, this is a fascinating thread.
I think these are all very important questions to ask and I applaud everyone who at least takes the time to ponder them.

Over the years I have become more and more shy of taking photos of people, exactly because of the fear of insulting them or making them feel like they are in a human zoo. On the other hand, sometimes portraits can be very powerful. In general, I always ask before taking a photo and it's usually of a person I have already had some sort of interaction with.

On the other hand, what to do with larger photos in a public area, where a person might not be the focus, but might still be identifiable? It's not always possible, say in Trafalgar Square in London, or Angkor Wat in Siem Reap to get a photo without anyone in it.
Should I not post a photo on my blog or on Facebook because one of the 35 random people visible in it might be identified? In this case, it's usually other tourists in the photos, but does that matter? They did not give me their approval.
I'm not being snarky here, or trying to imply I have the right to do what I want, I genuinely wonder what people think about such photos in public places with multiple people in them.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 04:07 PM
  #47  
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Seriously, a camera that automatically takes a picture every 30 seconds? A camera hidden in a coffee cup? Sign me up for a mask with a "no pics" symbol!
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 04:20 PM
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Well let me put on my tinfoil hat for a moment and think about that.

I feel like we're getting way off-topic here. Sure there are tons of hypotheticals we could throw out there in this thread about what could happen IN THE FUTURE. But, right now, there is no way for a camera to identify strangers in someone's random photo.

Wasn't this supposed to be about taking 'scene of life' photos on vacation that happen to have random strangers in them? Not about how the government or the NSA is collecting data on us and how that might translate to some hypothetical situation years in the future for everyday life?

If some day that level of blatant invasion of privacy is permitted by private companies selling consumer electronics, trust me, you'll then have a whole more to worry about than whether Indonesian Fruit Lady had her picture taken or not.

If you're worried now about what data may or may not be being collected on you that may or may not be utilized one day in the future, I suggest you don't leave home or pick up a phone. In the meantime, I'll be on vacation, living life...and taking pictures.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 04:41 PM
  #49  
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Hmm ... seems to me that the thread is about travel photography involving people. That includes, but I don't believe is limited to, "'scene of life' photos on vacation that happen to have random strangers in them." Of course, if readers don't see the relevance of specific comments, they are free to ignore them.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 06:30 PM
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Just because someone is a stranger to you, doesn't mean they haven't already been tagged by someone else on FB. Or that they are not in some government or corporate database. And your camera may be dumb, but a lot of people these days take photos with smart phones or tablets, which may also be online at the same time.

If you think that blatant invasion of privacy by private companies isn't already happening you have just not been paying attention.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 09:03 PM
  #51  
 
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Please explain to me the specifics of how someone not in my Facebook network and tagged on someone else's (which, by definition, means they KNOW that person) can show up on my feed as tagged or identified? Can you also explain to me the difference between my "dumb" camera (which is actually online) and taking a pic on my smartphone? Neither automatically recognizes strangers, irrespective of the device or the network status.

I mean I only work in tech, but I'd love to know how that's possible.
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 09:12 PM
  #52  
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Interesting. So YOU, filmwill, are going to proceed to take this thread off track, even after protesting that others were doing so? Interesting....
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Old Jan 16th, 2015, 09:25 PM
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Do I hear a wind blowing? Or maybe it's just hot air.
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Old Jan 17th, 2015, 06:13 AM
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@filmwill - i wasn't talking about what does happen out in public, today. I was talking about what could happen in public tomorrow, and what may well be happening already behind the scenes. FB has what is almost certainly by far the world's largest database of photos (who knows what the spy agencies have), and what is almost certainly the world's best facial recognition software (see http://www.forbes.com/sites/amitchow...7-25-accuracy/ ). If you don't think they are planning on putting the two together I have a bridge to sell you.

And since you have chosen to be rude, I am going to chose to ignore anything else you write.
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Old Jan 17th, 2015, 09:35 AM
  #55  
 
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...better that, I guess, thursday, than punching me or destroying my camera on the street next time I take a candid picture.

The delicious irony of you calling someone else rude is not lost on me.
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Old Jan 17th, 2015, 08:06 PM
  #56  
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I have found the comments about photographing people (intentionally or not) that have been offered on this thread quite illuminating. As noted above, I think there is value to exploring the ethical issues surrounding such issues and I appreciate the comments of all who have participated so far in the exploration of these issues.

I didn’t expect this thread to lead me to a whole different set of ethical issues: What to do when one is a witness, or inadvertent party, to potentially unethical or offensive behavior? My life experiences teach me that it is generally not acceptable to apply a negative label to a PERSON, although one can sometimes speak to another’s behavior or actions. So, for example, it might (under certain circumstances) be appropriate to say, “I found [X behavior] to be rude.” In contrast, it would generally be much less appropriate to publicly assert or imply that, “Person X is rude.” Of course, we differ in what we find rude. So, for example, my upbringing leads me to believe that failing to acknowledge or respond in any way to an apology or other attempt to achieve rapprochement is a behavior that can almost always be described as rude; others may have different standards.

So I add a few questions to those I’ve already posed: What if you are with someone who is taking pictures of others in a way that makes you uncomfortable? Or if a friend distributes pictures of you without securing your permission to disseminate them?
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Old Jan 18th, 2015, 05:35 AM
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I once attended a meeting where the other five people in the room had PhD's from Oxford, Harvard etc but they were still asking me how to do something. That's how I feel now. All of you know more about photography than I do but KJA asked for my opinion, well sort of.

1) "What if you are with someone who is taking pictures of others in a way that makes you uncomfortable?"

Before reading this thread I would have said "knock it off you rude a**hol*". Now that I have read a little bit more on the topic (not here) I would say "legally you can do that if you want to but I think you are a rude a**hol* for doing so".

2) Or if a friend distributes pictures of you without securing your permission to disseminate them?

It depends how I look, why they are doing it and who the picture will be going to. This happened in Iceland when three of us were shaking with fear about crossing a narrow ridge. One of our group who had already crossed the ridge yanked out his camera to get pictures of the three little frightened people crossing the ridge on their asses with white faces. I yelled at him to put his ******* camera away, saying this wasn't the Roman Colosseum. His plan was to forever show the picture of the crybabies. That would have really, really irritated me.

But if a friend wants to circulate my picture standing on top of the Besseggen Ridge after conquering Norway, please be my guest.
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Old Jan 18th, 2015, 08:11 AM
  #58  
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Was permission requested and granted for these pics? If not, should it have been?

http://listverse.com/2013/01/22/10-p...their-stories/
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Old Jan 18th, 2015, 03:58 PM
  #59  
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@ colduphere -- thanks! If I ever come into possession of a picture of you, triumphant, atop Besseggen Ridge, I promise to share it far and wide.

@ dcd -- good questions! Some of those photographs -- and others like them -- had a huge impact on society. So maybe one of the considerations is how the costs and benefits to the individuals involved balance out against the costs and benefits to society at large?
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Old Jan 18th, 2015, 04:08 PM
  #60  
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kja,
Bingo!
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