Goodbye Channel Nine, Hello Mark...

Photographers, globally, have one similar problem - be it perceived or not - in that people, security people, managers, police, whoever, seem to want to ask them what they're doing... So, in keeping with the standard, I was just wandering around the block taking some happy snaps with the pretty amazing (yes, really!) new Sony Powershot HX20V... There's a massive building site that is the old channel nine building just up the road and there are some very interesting old buildings, as well as a handful of tractors (Seb loves tractors!) so I was standing taking a couple of pictures when Mark asked me what I was doing... (outside the boundary on public property)

As has been the case on previous occasion, I immediately thought "Who is he to ask me what I'm doing!" ...but, for a change, took a moment to think before I answered! Yay me.. I told Mark that I thought it was almost amusing that the building had "Live Sub Station" sprayed on the side... like it was some living building... Then I asked Mark who he was and what he was doing - turns out Mark is the foreman on the whole project and was just wondering what I was up to. We had a long old chat about how it was all going and how it was going to effect the area and what are the strange noises that Seb asks me about "What's that noise?" (Turns out it's bead blasting to remove old lead based paint, and they keep a mist in the air to remove any dust / risk of breathing the stuff in)

...all in all, a much better result that having Mark haul me over the coals because I got my back up and replied with some smart comment like "I know my rights, you can't tell me to go away, I'm an awesome street photographer, look at my awesome camera, I'm so old skool, you can't controllll meeeee!!!..." oh, hang on, I may be letting my recent personal experiences with some ridiculous street photographers, who are an embarrassment to us all, cloud my comments... hmmm

When you stop and think about it, there's no reason someone shouldn't be able to simply ask you what you're doing, really, is there? A straight answer will pretty much always defuse the situation, and if you need to, show the person a photo or two (I showed Mark the new Sony..) ..who cares?

We're all just trying to do our thing, I guess, so I am going to be more helpful from now on and not so daftly, unnecessarily aggressive when people say "Hey, what are you doing there?" ..well, not aggressive, just unhelpful...

On a personal note, I'm looking forward to the channel nine property being finished - as long as we don't end up with a massive traffic problem, which based on what the sausage lady says, we shouldn't... And the facilities that the place will have are going to be a great benefit to the community.



Facebook Privacy - Matter to you?

I have a close friend that was recently a little concerned when someone she didn't know commented on a photo of her little boy that she had uploaded to Facebook. This week, my Facebook privacy tip is about "How to upload your photos to Facebook so that only the people you want to see them actually see them" I'll just give it to you in simple, easy to follow form... We'll start from when you're logged in and looking at your profile.

First, you click on the photo upload button...

Facebook Privacy Settings How To

Once clicked, select the image you're looking to share and pop in your text...

Facebook Privacy Settings How To

Once you're happy with your description / text, click on the little drop down beside the word 'post' and you will see a list of options.

  • Public - Is just that, anyone can see your photo.
  • Friends - Your friends, we'll assume people you actually know.
  • Friends except acquaintances - These are people that I consider 'casual contacts' like maybe a person you met at the park, don't really know...
  • Only me - that's only you, not me... Just a way to post a photo to yourself as a record / idea etc.. Your own personal album perhaps?
  • Custom - In custom, you could post a photo and only allow two of your friends to see it, for example, I photographed a friend's baby, and just wanted them to be able to see the photo - I added them individually to the custom tab and then only shared the image with them. Keep in mind that next time you use the custom option, it will still be sharing with those previously selected. (So, if it was your mum last time and your mates this time, well.. I'll let you explain that one!)
With Custom, you can also hide an image from certain people, as you can see in the image below, I'm only sharing the photo with my friend, Katie...

So you've selected your sharing option... Now you just upload, knowing that you have a little more control over who is looking at what.

Here's what it looks like when you share with everyone, everywhere...

Facebook Privacy Settings How To

If you have any Facebook sharing / privacy questions, you're welcome to ask in the comments below!

And security asked me to stop...

I'd finished shooting Blondie and Little Fish and was walking out of the o2 complex.. was still light'ish and I wanted to see how much of the dome I could fit in with the Sigma 8-16mm that I have at the moment, within moments of pointing my camera at the dome, this is what happened..

Sec. "You're taking a photo?"

Me. "No doubt"

Sec. "You're not allowed"

Me. "Why not? You've not stopped me the last ohh, THOUSAND times..."

Sec. "Who are you?"

Me. "Nobody... Why don't you stop that girl? *points*"

Sec. "She doesn't have a professional camera, she won't sell the photograph"

Sec. *on his walkie talkie* "Would you please check out the guy at the main doors, he won't stop taking photos"

Me. "I've got my shot, bye bye"

Sec. *looking deflated* "Tell me your name"

Me. "You don't need to know my name"

By this point, a young lad has wandered over and has asked me "do you want to know what they did to me in there tonight?" of course I'm interested... The venue security at o2 leave a lot to be desired - I'm talking the general mob, not iNdigo2 who are actually brilliant... Just the general venue security.. So, he shows me his arms [where you would be carried by security if there was one on either side of you] both bruised... The young lad claims that after some sort of emotional outburst, they were ejected (His GF's mum had died and Jack Johnson's music reminded her of old times.. so fair play) the lad and his mate had words with security and after a minor scuffle in the lift (no cameras!) and some bruised arms, they were ejected...

How does this all tie in?It actually doesn't..

But, by this time "security guard number one" had called his boss who was now standing next to me [with four others] I was talking to the beaten kid... security guard number one, let's call him SG1 was trying to get his words in "he's given beaten kid his business card!" ..over and over... Yeah, I did? does that bother you? Do you have something to hide?

So Security Boss asks what the issue is, I tell him there's no issue with me, I know it's private property and I've stopped taking photos, but, that I have taken about a thousand photos here before and have had no issues - he actually remembers me and has no issues... we move on to beaten kid - I look at the kids arm, then back to security boss and say "This isn't on, what are you going to do about it" to which he replies "I don't know, I didn't see it" convenient, wouldn't you say...

I don't think that's the end of beaten kid's story - the security boss took him away to [I hope] sweeten him [This is after he spies my press card] with [I think] a refund... [at least]

That's not the end of my story though... What I'd like to know is what made me different from the girl that was taking photos? She was using a Canon G11, I was using a Canon 30D ...hers had more MP than mine, the potential to take as good a shot as mine (obv depending on the user) but mine was black and bulky... I certainly didn't whip my press card out and say "hey, back off scumbag" but after him stating "You have no idea what the rules are" I showed him my press card and explained that I had some idea what the rules were and that I was on private land and that he was right to ask me to stop - but what he couldn't answer was why it was OK for the girl with the slightly smaller camera to take almost the same photo I was taking? - I will never get an answer and no doubt I'll take photos there again...

For those of you that want to know where o2 security can't touch you any more... see below (get out of the green bit before you take another photo)