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No first Amendment right to record police.

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posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 06:41 PM
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But Friday’s federal trial court decision in Fields v. City of Philadelphia takes a different, narrower approach: There is no constitutional right to videorecord police, the court says, when the act of recording is unaccompanied by “challenge or criticism” of the police conduct. (The court doesn’t decide whether there would be such a right if the challenge or criticism were present.) Therefore, the court held, simply “photograph[ing] approximately twenty police officers standing outside a home hosting a party” and “carr[ying] a camera” to a public protest to videotape “interaction between police and civilians during civil disobedience or protests” wasn’t protected by the First Amendment.


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I can't seem to understand why a federal court is ruling on something like this because the SCOTUS has already ruled that we can videotape police on public property. I know this well because I live in Illinois who had a draconian wiretapping law that the police would try to use against you if you tried to record them in any way, even in public. That has stopped since the SCOTUS ruling has come down.

Why on God's green Earth would the police be allowed to record it's interactions with the public but the public would not be able to record their interactions with the police? I mean, they are public servants, they work FOR the people.

What in the hell is wrong with this country and moreover, what in the hell is wrong with any presiding court that they don't see the complete nonsense of passing down a verdict like this. Not that it matters because SCOTUS has already set precedent but still. Holy hell.




posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 06:48 PM
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a reply to: Helious

This is the decision of a trial court, these is the lowest court in the state, as stated in the article already the 1 and 9 courts has expressed their views on this type of issues, even when the supreme court has not taken a case yet, this will be reversed.

The trial court judge is overstepping his boundaries.


edit on 23-2-2016 by marg6043 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 06:50 PM
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a reply to: marg6043

Any lower court that passes ruling that conflicts with a SCOTUS ruling is at the very least.... Overstepping their authority. I agree, wholeheartedly.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 07:02 PM
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a reply to: Helious

To be clear, as I understand it, SCOTUS hasn't actually issued a ruling on the matter. They've declined to hear an appeal on it, which has the effect of leaving the matter as it was at the last ruling. Which is that the public has the right to record police, as long as they do so openly and in public spaces.

I may be incorrect, but that's the last I had heard (that SCOTUS wouldn't hear the appeal to overturn) but if somebody else has an actual ruling, I'm all ears/eyes.

In any event, I think there are two circuit courts of appeals that don't share the same opinion on videoing police and I expect they'll continue to see cases until they fall in line with the majority of other courts of appeal.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 07:03 PM
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a reply to: Helious
They'll keep overstepping till they can get away with it any time......that's the incremental freedom grab that the gov boys are up to
Its been ongoing for a long while....



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 07:12 PM
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a reply to: bandersnatch

Aside from that whole bit about how more courts have ruled that the public DOES have the right than there are courts that have ruled the public does NOT have the right, you're like totally right man.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 07:13 PM
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originally posted by: Shamrock6
a reply to: Helious

To be clear, as I understand it, SCOTUS hasn't actually issued a ruling on the matter. They've declined to hear an appeal on it, which has the effect of leaving the matter as it was at the last ruling. Which is that the public has the right to record police, as long as they do so openly and in public spaces.

I may be incorrect, but that's the last I had heard (that SCOTUS wouldn't hear the appeal to overturn) but if somebody else has an actual ruling, I'm all ears/eyes.

In any event, I think there are two circuit courts of appeals that don't share the same opinion on videoing police and I expect they'll continue to see cases until they fall in line with the majority of other courts of appeal.


Strangely, Illinois until the recently elected republican Bruce was one of the most left leaning states in the entire country, probably only surpassed by California and Michigan.

Since the status on the SCOTUS ruling has come down, there has not been one wiretapping indictment in the state for videotaping police. A stark contrast to before the ruling. As with most legal issues and higher court rulings, things can be subjective but I think for the most part, the SCOTUS ruling effectively said it is our Constitutional right to film police during duty in public.

That is certainly what I was left reading the decision and what has since happened with regressive law enforcement in my state. Who are, because of this ruling, scared of being sued based on the president should they act in a way that violates the decision.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 07:44 PM
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a reply to: Helious

The police have a right to record you. You don't have a right to record police.

Unequal rights example #594



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:21 PM
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a reply to: Helious

Unclear how freedom of speech co-incides with the freedom to make a personal/public RECORDING of one speaking.

Opening your mouth, and recording someone else's? How is that 1st amendment's right to speak freely? Afterall, they are 2 different rights...



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:29 PM
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a reply to: Helious

I wasn't disagreeing with you, just to clarify. A ruling is an actual decision by a court. Not hearing an appeal isn't a ruling, it's declining to hear it.

The end result, in this case anyway, is the same as a decision to deny the appeal.

Just legal semantics I was trying to clarify.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:34 PM
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a reply to: mysterioustranger

Well, it's quite simple really. You see, the police of any municipality are instituted, funded and exist at the behest and in service of the taxpayers of that town, city, or county.

Because of that fact, they are without any argument public servants and as such have no legal authority to posses rights above the community in which they serve.

To be clear, if the police have the right to video record interactions in public by way of dash cam, body camera or by other means then the average citizen which employs those officers also have the same right.

Police are not granted special rights per the constitution nor any other law. What applies to us, applies to them and vice versa. If they can record, so can we. Should anything else be the case well then, we find ourselves living in a police state where the only evidence that can come out is one sided that can only ever favor the state.
edit on 23-2-2016 by Helious because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:35 PM
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originally posted by: centarix
a reply to: Helious

The police have a right to record you. You don't have a right to record police.

Unequal rights example #594


Do you wish to clarify your argument so that I can destroy it completely and cleanly? Because as it stands, your assertions lack basic common sense and also, unfortunately.... Any merit.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:39 PM
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a reply to: Helious

Thank you . I understand a bit better. Still, how do the two differ in falling under "freedom of speech", simply put? Thanks again.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:46 PM
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originally posted by: mysterioustranger
a reply to: Helious

Thank you . I understand a bit better. Still, how do the two differ in falling under "freedom of speech", simply put? Thanks again.


Freedom of speech, as most rights guaranteed under the Constitution is ever evolving and largely, as of late is because of technology. Basically, freedom of speech and freedom of the press covers video footage by private citizens as it pertains to public servants because what happens in public is not a secret, it can and is witnessed by others or at least has the potential to be and because of that fact, there is no cause to disallow videotaping because the matter is a "public" issue.

Freedom of speech allows a person to express their speech through video and that includes video in public. It's not absolute by any means and there are caveats but the precedent has been set that videotaping public servants (Police) in public is an extension of freedom of speech and is guaranteed by the first Amendment.
edit on 23-2-2016 by Helious because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 08:51 PM
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originally posted by: Shamrock6
a reply to: Helious

I wasn't disagreeing with you, just to clarify. A ruling is an actual decision by a court. Not hearing an appeal isn't a ruling, it's declining to hear it.

The end result, in this case anyway, is the same as a decision to deny the appeal.

Just legal semantics I was trying to clarify.


I'm sorry Sham, I know exactly what you meant and I agree with you completely. I didn't mean to give the wrong impression, I should have been clear that you were exactly right.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 10:16 PM
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Silly boy...what about a solution....a remedy

Public local network video platforms.....cool

Broadcast local live....for instant video of any incident....like a girl being approached by a random....is what they call strangers at elementary school these days......then the scene is going out live on alert say, for public assistance.....instantly

This platform.....if it could stand off and float around....



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 10:24 PM
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a reply to: Helious

Lot of politics and behind the scenes arm twisting.

Recording the police gives people a way to challenge their version of events and document their crimes.

Slaves musn't be allowed.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 10:30 PM
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Another example of Gov't tech accepted, now in the hands of anyone who holds a smartphone....

No doubt, the laws are behind tech... the folks that pass laws for the most part have no friggen clue....

Hell, the gov't can't protect information from theft by foreign nations.....

Who wants to bet that they focus on the US citizens, before they look in the mirror and try and plug the data breaches they are responsible for?


How about we elect some fresh reps, sens, and prez, who aren't beholden to those on thrones....

Liberty is precious... yet we seem to want to bargain that for convenience......

That won't end well..........



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 10:36 PM
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originally posted by: Helious

originally posted by: centarix
a reply to: Helious

The police have a right to record you. You don't have a right to record police.

Unequal rights example #594


Do you wish to clarify your argument so that I can destroy it completely and cleanly? Because as it stands, your assertions lack basic common sense and also, unfortunately.... Any merit.
Well to repeat the story in the OP, a person who is a non-cop must AVOID recording a police officer, except in the circumstances outlined in the article in the OP, because that is no longer a protected right if you not a member of the ruling class.

However, a cop as part of the ruling class can and will record everything he sees and hears at all times in Philadelphia. I look forward to you providing an example of a cop who had to shut down their recording equipment at any time. Do you know about red light cameras? Are they only accessible when an accident has occurred as would be required by rights described in the US constitution? Best of luck as you'll need it.



posted on Feb, 23 2016 @ 10:38 PM
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All I can say is it works both ways.




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