Photography deal with police is worrying - NUJ
21 August 2008
Metropolitan Police chiefs are reported to have reached an agreement with a small group of photographers that, if true, would interfere in editorial decision-making.
The UK Press Gazette reported that several Fleet Street photographers had agreed that the faces of firearms officers could be blurred to protect their identities. The NUJ said that it is alarmed by the reports.
Jeremy Dear, NUJ general secretary, said:
"If this report proves to be true then it is a worrying development. There are already clear guidelines, agreed between theh Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), the NUJ and other news organisations, detailing how relations between the press and the police should be conducted.
"We would have serious concerns if they were to be undermined by unilateral action by a specific branch of the police force.
"It is not for the photographer to decide when identities should be protected. That's a decision for editors, so they should approach picture desk editors and bodies representing the relevant journalists' interests.
"The NUJ will continue to work with our sister organisations to ensure that no arbitrary or unwarranted restrictions are applied to the media’s ability to report the news."