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AnotherCameraman

TV crew (again)

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AnotherCameraman
11 hours ago, Zulu 22 said:

With a comment like that I can understand why you might encounter problems. Usually the only people using "No Comment" are those that have something to hide.

It is obvious also that you have no idea what a Para Military is.  The Police are there to safeguard the Public and Society. Those same Police officers, as has been shown today, sometimes pay the ultimate price for safeguarding the public.

I mean absolutely no disrespect by the term "paramilitary," but I think it's reasonable - the police are a uniformed service which carries weapons and uses rank. I don't think there's anything particularly controversial about describing that as a paramilitary organisation, and I don't intend it as a criticism.

But yes, in extremis, I absolutely have something to hide. I don't want to tell you who I am because doing so is likely to cause me trouble, regardless whether I have done anything wrong. That is not unreasonable behaviour and I don't think I'm being a bad guy. I don't want to be the bad guy. I don't want this to happen. This is not my preferred type of interaction with the police. I want to find ways to avoid this happening.

I'm here asking these questions because my colleagues and I increasingly feel backed into a corner by the police, in a situation where we can engage in conversation and risk causing problems, or refuse to interact and... risk causing problems. Our behavior has not changed. It is the behaviour of the police which is creating this lose-lose scenario and, no matter what anyone's position on law enforcement this cannot possibly be a good idea.

The news coverage of Andrew Harper's tragic death includes an interview with a member of a police service (here in full) whose attitude only reinforces my concerns. I can give you a few quotes:

Quote

 

"I aim to dominate suspects from the outset, either verbally or physically."

"I use bravado and subterfuge while waiting for my colleagues to arrive"

"I sometimes let them think they are going to be let go and say it's just a routine check, to pass time until my mates have arrived."

"If we don't get stuck in, we are not doing what we get paid to do."

 

This is exactly the sort of behaviour that I've been describing. The opening tactic is all about anger and shouting. Deception is normal procedure for this guy, and his only wish is for more police to turn up so they can gang up on the "suspect," which in this situation is possibly me. And, I remind you, all I've actually done in this scenario is stand on a street corner with a camera.

Some people will become angry and violent. My colleagues and I won't, but we are also unlikely to feel very cooperative when subjected to that sort of behaviour and I suggest that at some level the police do want and need our cooperation. If they want it, they can have it. They just need to stop harassing us, shouting at us, and lying to us.

Am I being unreasonable?

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Zulu 22

I could see why officers could take offence at your attitude. There is nothing wrong with an officer being assertive, especially when dealing with many of the idiots that we have to deal with.  I find that your use of the death of Andrew Harper as being reprehensible. No we do not know who you are,  for one do not want to know. What I do know is that with your last comment posted you have lost, what little credibility you had. You are certainly no credit to the high number of Camera Crew who do not have your attitude. You do them a great disservice.

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AnotherCameraman

Okay, fine, I'll bow out at that point.

Let's be clear that I came here with the best of intentions, with the hope of opening a constructive dialogue, and in the hope of avoiding the needlessly combative and confrontational interactions that now often occur between the police and camera people.

I leave feeling that all reasonable avenues have now been exhausted, that the police want and relish the unpleasantness. I think this is incredibly ill-advised, for any number of reasons, and will disadvantage the police as much as it disadvantages anyone else,  but I have said my part.

I'm going to continue doing everything I can to de-escalate these situations, and I'm going to continue advising people I work with and train to do so. I can do no more.

I do think that the whole tone of this debate brings UK policing into disrepute and will further affect the legitimacy with which the police are viewed by the public, and I am astonished that the police seem to want and relish this, but there is nothing I can do about it.

I have done my best.

AC

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Cje.ex999

Perhaps your Best was not good enough.

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junior_7178

Very bizarre thread. I've never come across a TV crew during my working day, not that I've felt the need to go and speak to anyway. Come to think of it, i did see a few crews filming outside the Town Hall in the city centre last week, but i never felt the need to go and speak to them and ask me what they were doing. Don't think I've ever heard a job go out over the radio for someone to attend a 'suspicious tv crew' or similar. I just can't even think of a scenario where I'd need to even interact with a cameraman, unless perhaps they were trying to get into or through a cordon, and then I'd have a polite word and would expect them to react professionally.

There only situation/place where i could see a tv crew filming being a bit of an issue might be near a military or nuclear site, but that would probably result in MOD PLOD or CNC attending rather than a local force. I used to be in the Army and there was quite often a TV crew filming outside the gates for one reason or another. I presumed that if they were going to do that they'd normally nip into the guardroom and let them know what they were up to. I would also assume that they'd have some sort of official press association ID, but maybe not.

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Beaker
Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, AnotherCameraman said:

This is exactly the sort of behaviour that I've been describing. The opening tactic is all about anger and shouting. Deception is normal procedure for this guy, and his only wish is for more police to turn up so they can gang up on the "suspect," which in this situation is possibly me. And, I remind you, all I've actually done in this scenario is stand on a street corner with a camera.

Some people will become angry and violent. My colleagues and I won't, but we are also unlikely to feel very cooperative when subjected to that sort of behaviour and I suggest that at some level the police do want and need our cooperation. If they want it, they can have it. They just need to stop harassing us, shouting at us, and lying to us.

Am I being unreasonable?

 

You have absolutely no idea about the type of people we have to deal with a lot of the time. 

Ever had to try and delay 3 people in a car parked on a country lane who are hostile while you're on your own?  Bonus line if they had been snorting marching powder all night.

Ever been on a street corner in the middle of town and your nearest help is 5 minutes away at best, while a couple of guys REALLY want to smash your head in?

When was the last time you intentionally went looking for a person who was known to be violent towards camera men?

You've recently had to attend a suicidal person who was non-coperative I'm guessing who didn't want you there, and you have to stay and make sure they were ok?

Or a group of kids (I know Journos LOVE seeing us dealing with 15-18 year olds in a "bad" way) that have zero respect for the law, and think nothing of making threats and are likely to follow through on them?  You get another bonus line if at least one of them is known for carrying weapons.

Edited by Beaker
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Posh
On 15/08/2019 at 23:43, AnotherCameraman said:

Look at it from my perspective. I've been standing on a street corner with a camera on a tripod waiting to meet someone. Unbeknownst to me, someone has reported my presence to the police. The police leap to obey and send two people. The first I know about it is an angry, confrontational shout of "you! stay there! don't move!" from behind me. I'll immediately realise what's going on, but I'm now being confronted on the street by two angry armed men in paramilitary uniforms who I don't know, and who want my address under threat of taking my possessions, affecting my career and dragging me off in chains. Touchy? Yes, very. So would you be.

How do you know you have a "bona fide camera crew?" You don't. There's not really any such thing; I regularly work for the big broadcasters and I am under no illusions that doing so alters my rights or responsibilities in the slightest. There is still the press card, though the Met in particular have shown that they no longer take it seriously and, as I say, it doesn't really change anything. Anyway, from what I've seen, the police don't care if they have a bona fide camera crew or not; they're not really trying to find out who the person is, they're trying to provoke a confrontation.

If I do give up who I am, I risk being put on a list to be given extra hassle in future. We know this because our members are sometimes told how many times they've been stopped. I can give you one name here because it's a well-known case in the field - look up a guy called Jules Mattsson, who was assaulted by the Met, sued, won, and years later had to take them to court again to find out what information they'd been keeping on file about him. I don't know if the average police officer patrolling London is privy to this but some sort of system certainly exists.

Everything in bold is rubbish, you clearly inhabit somewhere between fantasy and fallacy. Although come to mention it, I think I have seen the list you're talking about, it's usually in the weekly email with the list of Most Wanted Lolly Pop Ladies and the list of Most Dangerous Ice Cream Vans...

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Radman

This thread is comedy gold. 

Remember @AnotherCameraman if you don't want adding to the 'list' don't tell'em your name Pike!

😂😂

 

DNLQV34WkAEH9L9.jpg

  • Haha 3

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