Not quite, or maybe we should say, not quite yet.
The danger in these types of oppressive laws and licensing requirements is obvious, isn’t it? Selective enforcement (within vague, poorly defined guidelines of “right” and “wrong”) could lead directly to greater government management of information. Especially in these times, when the new vox populi of Internet-enabled imagery and video is redefining news on a daily basis, this move smacks of an end-run around some of our most basic rights.
PS: UPDATE from 8/4/2007. I guess a strong objection to this sort of thing really can work…
From Ray Rivera, for the New York Times
Some tourists, amateur photographers, even would-be filmmakers hoping to make it big on YouTube could soon be forced to obtain a city permit and $1 million in liability insurance before taking pictures or filming on city property, including sidewalks.
New rules being considered by the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting would require any group of two or more people who want to use a camera in a single public location for more than a half hour to get a city permit and insurance.