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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:47 am 
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So here's an interesting development from the 'what bloody next' department.

You're strolling along on TM, and you want to snap a photo of a dassie (or your kid, a flower, or whatever). Cute. But wait, suddenly there's a hand on your shoulder! "STOP! Where is your photo-permit?"

My what? It's a SANPark ranger, the long green arm of the law. And it turns out you're not allowed to take photos in the park without a permit.

Um... what!? So, I checked.
According to the ranger, it works like this (disclaimer: I have not verified this with any other Park personnel, just a field ranger and a section manager - so far several phone calls for clarity from more senior officials have not been returned):

You need to go to the head office of the Park, fill in the forms for a 'non-commercial' photoshoot (yes, a commercial shoot would entail a big handover of cash - but we're talking about every man and his dog with a point-and-shoot camera, not Ridley Scott), and hand them in. Ok, so it's free. For now. A committee then assesses your application, you're checked against a user database (to check if you're "blacklisted") and then your permit is issued after a "week". It may be valid for several months.
Then you can go and take photos.

Bummer if you're only in town for a few days.

I have no idea how they plan to police this. I don't even know if it's being fully enforced (probably not). At the best, a fascist policy like this will merely criminalise most park users with a camera, and be enforced at the discretion of random rangers. It does give Parks apparatchiks yet more leeway to control one, however. And once one's name is on the 'database', there is potential for further revenue-gathering in future. Also, it may also have the positive benefit of serving as a letting-off-steam valve for rangers who are frustrated at their inability to catch the muggers. A case of 'if you can't catch a particular group of criminals, then criminalise a group you *can* catch'. Government law-makers are good at that.

I must say, even for a skeptic like me, I'm completely fucking stunned. Mouth-gaping, eye-popping stunned.

Anyway (and here I wave a polite hello to the Parks folk who scan this forum, and yes, I know they know who I am), maybe I have part of the story wrong, but I have seen the printed document from Parks, read it thoroughly (and kept it), and it seems more or less clear, and (partially) corroborates what the ranger said.

So, if you're on the hill taking some photies, watch out for the Parks poh-leece, 'cos they see you shootin', they hatin'.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:16 pm 
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Real Name: Willem Boshoff
it's not the 1st of April is it????

that must be the most ridiculous idea ever. i doubt that it will stand in court. surely there must be something wrong with the interpretation here? in the mean time, i'm going to be snapping away ever so happily :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:59 pm 
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What's the best way to make a ruckus about this so that they can scrap this silly joke? Newspapers? Bombardment with letters? This kite won't fly.

In the meantime, I'll tell them it's not a camera, it's a self-defense mechanism I carry around to ward off the vagrant hoodlums they keep on land they're supposed to manage.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:06 pm 
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Real Name: Wesley Williams
Its an unenforceable law that makes park rangers look like dicks rather than accomplishing anything useful.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:24 pm 
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Apparently the commercial guys pay R15k for pictures of the cable car and about R10k to shoot up there. Well, this is what they have charged recently anyway. Freedom and Civil liberties are precious things

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 3:56 pm 
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Real Name: Paul P
:shock: And to think that today in the office we were smugly noting that in SA we didn't have anything as completely daft as the camera and/or tripod bans that we'd recently experienced in India. Oopsie.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 4:13 pm 
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So every foreign tourist is going to have to apply for a permit befire they take their holiday snaps. That'll go down like a lead balloon.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:30 pm 
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Well from what I've seen and heard first hand it's quite obvious that the rangers are focussed on law enforcement rather than public safety or conservation so I suppose they need to come up with stuff to justify their existence :evil: :evil: :evil:


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:43 pm 
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Real Name: Jacques Redelinghuys
Brent, at least now you might actually look like the cat in your avatar! :lol: funny!

Sorry, like with Malema, I have nothing so say except, gasp...


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:56 pm 
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Sounds like somebody is smoking their socks.... :twisted: and I don't mean you, Brent!


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2011 7:15 am 
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Serious? you can't be. But I guess you didn't make this up. So some ranger was smoking something. Or a newbie recruit who read the manual too literally.
Shit think about the repercussions. Every tourist going to Kruger or TMNP would need to get a permit for their camera or cell phone. Absolutely bloody impossible.

Might be interesting to call the SANParks office for an official policy line on this.

btw, I actually doubt they could legally do this. It's public land after all. Belongs to us, SANParks are just the custodians. And TMNP from a legal perspective has free access except for three areas. Boulders, SIlvermine and Cape Point.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2011 9:58 am 
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Real Name: Justin Lawson
From: http://sanparks.org.za/misc/terms/

6. Policy on cinematographic or photographic material

"In terms of Regulation 20(1)(a) of the regulations under the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act, nobody may in a national park undertake "the filming and simultaneous transmitting of photographic images by the use of a webcam or other image recording or transmitting device", unless a filming permit has been obtained.

In terms of Regualtion 20(1)(h), the making of a cinematographic film or the taking of photographs in a national park for a commercial purpose - either directly or indirectly - is unlawful unless a filming permit has been obtained. The procedure for obtaining a filming permit is contained in the SANParks Filming Policy, which can be viewed on our website at http://www.sanparks.org. Special filming privileges are also subject to the policy.

The use of any of the cinematographic film or photographs contained on 'this' (sanparks.org) website, or any cinematographic film or photographs obtained from any National Park, without the necessary permit, is unlawful.
"

I find this all rather strange when you take into account the SANParks Photo Gallery page where the public have uploaded many photographs (do all these people have permits?).

Image

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2011 8:16 pm 
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Real Name: Franz Fuls
I want some of the stuff sanparks is smoking :jocolor:


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:06 am 
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Justin wrote:
6. Policy on cinematographic or photographic material

"[i]In terms of Regulation 20(1)(a) of the regulations under the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act, nobody may in a national park undertake "the filming and simultaneous transmitting of photographic images by the use of a webcam or other image recording or transmitting device", unless a filming permit has been obtained.

In terms of Regualtion 20(1)(h), the making of a cinematographic film or the taking of photographs in a national park for a commercial purpose - either directly or indirectly - is unlawful unless a filming permit has been obtained. The procedure for obtaining a filming permit is contained in the SANParks Filming Policy, which can be viewed on our website at http://www.sanparks.org. Special filming privileges are also subject to the policy.


I like the photo, haha!
Because I am trying as hard as possible to procrastinate, I've highlighted in red what I think are the important bits from Justin's post and the regulation seem to be relating to live broadcasting and commercial filming or photography, nothing related to recreational photography unless I've missed something. I am studying way too hard at the moment so my mind might be a little fuzzy :?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 9:12 am 
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Real Name: Wesley
Quote:
"[i]In terms of Regulation 20(1)(a) of the regulations under the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act, nobody may in a national park undertake "the filming and simultaneous transmitting of photographic images by the use of a webcam or other image recording or transmitting device", unless a filming permit has been obtained.

This is only referring to webcams and any setup that is "Fiming and simultaneous transmitting".

Quote:
nothing related to recreational photography

Agreed.

I think there is just some misinterpretation of the rules going on here.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 9:32 am 
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Haha, if makulu ranger can run fast enough, he can have my camera.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 10:55 am 
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Re 'commercial purposes'... we specifically enquired about 'non-commercial' purposes. Parks were adamant about it, the permit for 'commercial' is different to the permit for 'non-commercial'. The main difference is that for 'commercial', you have to pay (heftily, no doubt). But you DO need a permit.

I should scan and post the regulations for the permit, which they gave us. It's quite clear, you cannot shoot without the permit.

To me, it's clear that this is one of those regulations that is in place to be enforced if they feel like it. Obviously they cannot enforce it on everyone. So, for the most part, it is ignored by everyone (including rangers). However, the beauty of it is the rule is there so that they can apply it selectively, ie, if they bloody well feel like it. Or if they don't like your face, or whatever. It's very cunning, and a ploy that the government uses in much of its own legislation. They tie things up so solidly in red tape you don't know it's happening until they feel like enforcing it. They you realise your hands are tied right from the get-go.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:26 am 
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Real Name: Jonathan Joseph
I propose a shoot-off!

Let's organize a huuuuge crowd, each person armed with a camera, head up there and just start snapping away at everything, including the rangers trying to confiscate cameras.

Could call ourselves the See Shepherds.

8)


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:31 am 
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I thought I had heard a similar story elsewhere

http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk/ne ... 02547.html

http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk/ne ... 99387.html


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 11:35 am 
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Google the KinderScout Mass trespass.

Unfortunately, EVERYTHING is banned in a National Park, without written permission.

(Yup even 'the sport of climbing rock faces')

Then are are EMPs and all sorts of contrivia that effectivly 'give permission' to the general public...

Ant


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 12:03 pm 
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Real Name: Justin Lawson
From: Cape Times

On Wednesday at 9pm two Independent Newspapers photographers tried to take photographs of Table Mountain from Signal Hill, but a ranger said he would fine them R500 if they proceeded as they needed a permit to take photographs for business purposes.

Yesterday SANParks regional spokeswoman Merle Collins said taking photographs for personal use or for newspapers was permitted.

The ranger had been incorrect.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:22 pm 
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Real Name: Brandon
Maybe their reasoning here is that in an effort to curb the increased amount of muggings on the mountain, they remove peoples cameras from them so that they don't get stolen.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 1:34 pm 
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Hopefully Justin will attach the jpg I sent, which is the actual piece of paper we were given.

This is the copy that we were handed by the manager of the particular office that was visited, after being approached by two rangers in the forest. I must add the rangers were polite, but firm and although did not seem able to elaborate in any way on the regulations, did refer us to the local manager.

Note the 4th bullet point, which prohibits the 'setting up' of, among others, 'any models' - so essentially nobody may take a photo of anyone else. (!)

We were also told that this is merely the document template - the forms/paperwork one has to complete are separate... who knows what further inanities/insanities are in those forms.

Note also that we were told that they would be maintaining a "blacklist", for transgressors.

They're calling it a 'permit' system, but to me it seems less like a permit, and more like a wide-ranging prohibition.


Attachments:
File comment: SANParks Photo Permit request form
sanparks-photo-form_750.jpg
sanparks-photo-form_750.jpg [ 162.67 KiB | Viewed 4338 times ]
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 2:27 pm 
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smityb wrote:
Maybe their reasoning here is that in an effort to curb the increased amount of muggings on the mountain, they remove peoples cameras from them so that they don't get stolen.


:lol:

Before you know it they'll start asking huge admission prices too, so there's no money in your wallet to be stolen!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 11:15 am 
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Chris F wrote:
smityb wrote:
Maybe their reasoning here is that in an effort to curb the increased amount of muggings on the mountain, they remove peoples cameras from them so that they don't get stolen.


:lol:

Before you know it they'll start asking huge admission prices too, so there's no money in your wallet to be stolen!


TMNP Activity Permits for Climbing
Holy crap, I wasn't far off :shock:

Never a truer word spoken in jest.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 2:13 pm 
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Real Name: teresa
This is the official response to this from TMNP.
This follows my media enquiry.
Bottom line, it's optional.
Teresa Fischer
People's Post


In terms of the National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act (57/2003) GG 28181, GNR 1061, Part 5 Section 50: Regulations 20 (1) A person may not undertake any of the following activities in a special nature reserve, national park or world heritage site except pursuant to a license, permit or agreement and subject to the payment of the appropriate fees between that person, or some other person, and the management authority:

(a) the filming and simultaneous transmitting of photographic images by the use of a web cam or other image recording or transmitting device
(b) the conducting of tours
(c) the conducting or any kind of competition
(d) the selling or hiring goods or offering goods for sale or hire; or
(e) the provision of, or offering to provide, any service for a fee or reward; or
(f) the conducting of speed trials; or
(g) the conducting of research
(h) an activity of any kind for the purpose of fund raising, personal gain or making a profit
(i) any organized or special event, including sporting or cultural events: or
(j) visual imaging of animals for purposes of any virtual hunting or other such activity
For clarity – in terms of the Protected Areas Act 57 of 2003, any photographer providing or offering their services for a fee or reward in Table Mountain National Park (TMNP) needs a permit to do so, as does anyone taking photographs in TMNP for the purpose of fund raising, personal gain or making a profit. Vanessa Fletcher is our Permitting Officer and may be contacted on 021 7018692 or vanessaf@sanparks.org in this regard. The rangers are required to approach anyone they suspect of photographing for monetary gain/commercial purposes, irrespective of the size or model of camera used especially if such an activity could have negative effects on the site and its’ visitors.

Anyone therefore setting up sets, props or scenery for photography or filming, or seen using specialized equipment that is not normally carried by visitors on holiday or for private use, or anyone acting in a way that is not normal for a regular visitor or site-seer taking images for home use will be checked by the rangers. If the person with the camera has a reasonable explanation and his/her actions reflect this explanation, no further action will be taken.

Amateur photographers can expect to be approached by rangers on duty and if they feel they would be sensitive to such an approach then they are welcome to obtain a free annual or once off permit from the TMNP Permitting Officer (vanessaf@sanparks.org or 021 7018692) which they can show to the Rangers when approached.
Please remember that there are commercial operators out there operating illegally who cause damage to the environment and rangers need to be consistent and check on every one. Of course if we establish that a photographer is operating illegally in the TMNP in terms of the relevant legislation then we will be left with no other option but to seek further relief (warnings, fines, arrests, confiscation of equipment etc).
Over and above administering usage and visitors, management has both national and international mandates to manage the Table Mountain National Park (TMNP) as a National Park and World Heritage Site with respect to conserving this precious and threatened eco-system and globally recognised biodiversity hotspot. The task falls to management to accommodate users while protecting the natural environment so that it can be managed in a sustainable manner taking into to account the enjoyment of future generations and not only current users. Park management strives to ensure that areas that lend themselves to recreational usage are used in a way that impacts on the environment and other users as little as possible.

Merle Collins (Mrs)
Regional Communications Manager: Cape Region *
South African National Parks (SANParks)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 3:31 pm 
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Well according to the last one, so long as you are taking for non-commercial reasons and NOT streaming the video directly out of the park then you do not need a permit...
?


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:34 pm 
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this is bull!! are you still allowed to take pictures of Table Mountain from lets say Blouberg strand?

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