About 100 shutterbugs clicked, snapped and beeped in an Independence Day declaration of “photographic freedom.”
“Corporations are building developments with your money and taking your rights away,” photographer Chip Py told protesters as they assembled on the Veterans Plaza turf. “We need to make sure we exercise our rights.”
Photographer Chip Py, state senator Jamie Raskin (D-20) and Penguin editor Jennifer Deseo talk about the Downtown Silver Spring photo walk. Video photography by Ron Pace for The Silver Spring Penguin.
The Peterson Cos. leases Ellsworth Drive from the county and accepted public funds to develop the area. According to Py, the company banned him and other photographers from snapping pics on Ellsworth Drive in early June.
However, local blog Just Up the Pike spoke with a company representative, who said there never was a photo ban.
“If we see someone with a nice-looking camera, we ask them to check it with the guards,” the company rep told blogger Dan Reed. “We ask that people be respectful and not [be] disruptive.”
Still, Py told The Penguin that company policies could easily impose on other First Amendment rights, such as the right to assemble or to distribute political literature.
The company has since altered its photography policy, according to the Baltimore Sun.
Updated Jul 5, 2007, at 11:36 a.m.