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Sunday, April 12, 2015

Teaching citizens to video--and to exercise the First Amendment

This PBS story from Friday discusses the "Video as Evidence" program, begun by the international human-rights organization WITNESS, to teach people how to record video of police and other public government activities. The goal is to train people to document events not only for use on YouTube and in public discussions of police misconduct, but also for effective use in court, which is where any "accountability" must occur through criminal prosecution and civil litigation. Issues include training in how to properly frame and follow images and events, as well as how to ensure authenticity and a proper chain of custody. WITNESS's primary focus is outside the United States, but the idea could and probably should be recreated here.

Of course, if this stupid bill becomes law in Texas, could one argue that the program is actually facilitating unlawful behavior and thus itself without First Amendment protection?

Posted by Howard Wasserman on April 12, 2015 at 10:13 AM in First Amendment, Howard Wasserman, Law and Politics | Permalink

Comments

If it can be used to hold our "betters" accountable, I'm sure they'll find a way to squash it.

Posted by: Jeff H | Apr 14, 2015 6:43:34 AM

(channeling Professor Farnsworth)

Good news everyone!

DMN-

"Bill to limit filming of police activity is dropped"

http://www.dallasnews.com/news/politics/state-politics/20150410-bill-to-limit-filming-of-police-activity-is-dropped.ece


That prick Villalba is still going down in flames next go-round though.

Posted by: Great Wall of Texas | Apr 13, 2015 9:14:26 PM

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