Spanish Gov't Wants To Make It A Crime To Photograph Cops

from the freedom-isn't-free dept

We've had plenty of stories (mainly in the US) of police overreacting to the public photographing or videotaping them. Thankfully, US courts have been recognizing that recording police on duty is not a crime (and can actually be beneficial in preventing abuse). While we still see frequent reports of police harassing photographers, it does appear that US officials and judges widely support allowing the photography of police, except in extreme circumstances. However, Spain may be going in a different direction. Francisco George points us to the news that the Department of the Interior is proposing a regulation that would make the dissemination of photographs of law enforcement a possible crime. The new rules would prohibit
"the recruitment, reproduction or processing of images, sounds or information of members of the security forces in the exercise of its functions as may endanger life or risk the operation they are developing."
In other words, they don't want you to notice them, even if you notice them. This seems ridiculous and clearly goes way too far. If police are out in public, it should be fair game to photograph or videotape them. It may not be smart or particularly helpful in solving crimes, but to claim that such photographs could be illegal seems like a clear attack on free speech.

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