The Sound of Silence

I’ve read in several places now about calls that mirror-slapping DSLRs should be banned from events. We already have the “never before ball is struck ban” in golf, but I keep hearing people saying that only silent cameras should be used to shoot press conferences and other public events.

Be careful what you wish for. 

If you’re a politician, for instance, hearing a shutter go off tells you when you’re being photographed, and reminds you that you are being photographed. Silent shutters? Nope, you won’t know when photos are being taken. Indeed, there are street photography tactics that can be used where you might not think the camera is even active yet while you’re being photographed; the old shoot-from-the-hip strategy. 

Silent shutters start to be a privacy issue of sorts. 

We have laws about notification when recording in place. For instance, if you’re going to record a telephone conversation, the recording device must beep to remind the participants that a recording is being made. So I wouldn’t be surprised if someone proposed that a light flash every time you take a photo. That seems like it could be as annoying as mirror slaps. 

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