Under-fire security firm G4S has issued a statement as London 2012 organisers are urged to clarify their policy following confusion over which cameras will be banned from Olympic venues.
As we reported last month, visitors face a ‘30cm’ limit on photographic equipment at London 2012 Olympic venues, under rules laid down by the organising committee.
Locog added: ‘You cannot use photographic or broadcast equipment for commercial purposes unless you hold media accreditation.’
Amateur Photographer (AP) understands that a key member of famed agency Magnum Photos is among those who fear the strict rules will limit photographers’ ability to record historic reportage-style shots from inside venues.
And confusion has resurfaced after an article published by BJP and ComputerActive magazines which claims that Wembley Stadium – set to host Olympic football events – will ban any ‘professional-style cameras [any cameras with interchangeable lenses] or recording/transmitting devices’.
This suggests that each venue may adopt its own policy and reignites the debate over Olympic rules following a series of conflicting statements issued to AP over the past 15 months.
AP first warned that DSLR lenses may be prohibited from Olympic venues in a report published in March 2011.
A Locog spokesperson had yet to respond to a request for comment, but suggested it is possible that Wembley may integrate its own policy within the Olympic organisers’ own rules.
A spokesperson for G4S, which is under fire after failing to deliver enough guards, referred AP to the 30cm limit already outlined by Locog.
The G4S spokesperson added: ‘Personal/private wireless access points and 3G hubs (smart devices such as Android phones, iPhone and tablets are permitted inside venues, but must not be used as wireless access points to connect multiple devices).’
Meanwhile, the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) says it will not be reissuing its photographers’ rights guidelines to security firms, despite several clashes involving photographers in recent months.
Though the BSIA says it has issued the rules to its member firms, it is unclear how Olympic security provider G4S has communicated these to individual staff on the ground.
The G4S spokesperson failed to address this point when approached by AP.
The spokesperson said: ‘Anyone is entitled to take photographs unimpeded from public land.
‘Inside the venues, members of the public are encouraged not to photograph G4S security staff at work (this includes the media).
‘However, if an individual is on public land they should not be prevented from recording images.’
Asked whether the BSIA would be reissuing the rules ahead of the Games, a spokeswoman said: ‘From a BSIA perspective, there are no plans to re-launch the BSIA’s guidance relating to photography and hostile reconnaissance.
‘The guidelines have been issued to all members via a range of channels, for them to cascade to individual security officers, and [they] also remain publicly available on our website at http://www.bsia.co.uk/web_images//publications/form_122.pdf‘