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Your Right to Record What Police Do in Public

Written by Gary North on April 12, 2012

The public has smart phones. Smart phones can record video. The police are beginning to be told by courts that they may not confiscate cell phones and pocket video camcorders.

Still, it you have your unit confiscated and erased, your case against the police will be weakened.

Once a video is on YouTube, the police have a major public relations problem.

If you have enough time, call home. Start recording what is going on at home. If they steal your smart phone, you still have a copy of the video to upload.

Reason Magazine ran an excellent article on rules for recording police officers. Basically, if you record them in public and do not physically interfere, it’s legal except in Massachusetts and Illinois.

Here are the rules.

Rule #1: Know the Law (Wherever You Are)

Rule #2 Don’t Secretly Record Police

Rule #3: Respond to Questions 

Rule #4: Don’t Share Your Video with Police

Rule #5: Prepare to be Arrested

Rule #6: Master Your Technology

Rule #7: Don’t Point Your Camera Like a Gun

This looks good.

. . . you should consider installing a streaming video recording and sharing app such as Qik or Bambuser. Both apps are free and easy to use.

The magic of both apps is that they can instantly store your video offsite. This is essential for preserving video in case police illegally destroy or confiscate your camera. But even with these apps installed, you’ll want to make sure that your device is always passcode protected. If a cop snatches your camera, this will make it extremely difficultfor her to simply delete your videos. (If a cop tries to trick you into revealing your passcode, never, never, never give it up!)Keep in mind that Qik and Bambuser’s offsite upload feature might be slow or nonexistent in places without Wi-Fi or a strong 3G/4G signal. Regardless, your captured video will be saved locally on your device until you’ve got a good enough signal to upload offsite.

For the full report, click the link.

Continue Reading on reason.com

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4 thoughts on “Your Right to Record What Police Do in Public

  1. Golden Dragon says:

    This tip was given in the libertarian novel "High Desert Barbecue". Available from
    Kindle version also.

  2. John Q. Galt says:

    The story related to the "Officer Psycho" link in the Reason article is taking a nice turn. http://www.pixiq.com/article/news-videographer-fi

    The videographer Philip Datz has filed suit. Much more legal pain needs to be inflicted in the future.

  3. http://www.trunews.com with Rick Wiles.

  4. every night. Yes