Thursday, August 25, 2011


photo of Artist Dan Das Man and Photographer Artist Karen Kuehn by Ashly Bryce

For those of you who are intending photographing at Burning Man I've decided to pass on the helpful words of Will Chase's blog "Jack Rabbit Speaks" to you as it is really a matter of being a thoughtful shooter. Many people shoot and do stock and at this event it is not cool to do so and I think that is 100 percent the wrong reason to shoot at Burning Man. Its a private event. I have gone and shot and am in the midst of another project and about to embark on its creation and completion hopefully by late fall.
Please read and share with those who are going to be taking photographs at Burning Man this year 2012 . Be respectful of others privacy and shoot with a kind eye. Good Luck.
Compliments of Will Chase and Jack Rabbit Speaks.


Burning Man has created policies and agreements to enact a special zone for the use of cameras in Black Rock City. These policies are aimed at protecting participants' right to privacy and preventing the commodification of our event and we appreciate all our participants have done over the years to help protect this special zone.

We've continued our quest to keep updating these policies in keeping with the times, while maintaining our ability to protect Black Rock City and its inhabitants. While we've never required registration for personal still cameras, all Video Cameras for personal use must physically register for permission to shoot moving imagery in Black Rock City.

For many years this process has been achieved by filling out a Personal Use Agreement upon entry, stating intent to use imagery only for personal use (friends and family), and affixing an approval tag to the camera indicating this registration has been completed.

NEW INFO: Starting this year, these personal use video cameras will still fill out the permission form, but they will NOT RECEIVE TAGS.

Over the years as technology has evolved, the number, size, and type of personal cameras (and the ways we share imagery online) have transformed this legal landscape -- so much that placing actual tags on these types of cameras has become outmoded and even impractical (where to affix a tag on an iPhone, exactly?). Therefore, we have opted to keep the agreement but eliminate the tag.

The same legal net of protection is afforded for BRC by the terms and conditions ( that *every* participant agrees to by their entry to the event. This prevent the use of ANY image for wide scale public distribution or commercial purposes without expressed written permission from Burning Man.

For video, we also enact the added protection of the Personal Use Agreement, which requires video camera users to state their intentions only to share for personal purposes, and to notify Burning Man before making any further uses.

We anticipate a period of adjustment as we all educate each other about this new method - we've become accustomed to watching out for tags on EVERY video camera, but now, the only tags present will be those on professional cameras. Please remember as you watch your fellow participants using cameras this year that NO personal cameras will carry camera tags - if someones shooting without a tag, it doesn't mean they haven't registered, and they're still required to get written permission to do anything with that footage beyond personal use.

Otherwise, only professional cameras will carry tags. Professional media also wear a laminate that identifies them as members of the press. Media Mecca, Playa Info, and the Civic Info Kiosks located around the city will have posters displaying the 2011 Media Tag looks like so you can identify when a camera aimed at you is tagged with professional credentials.

As stated in the Terms of Use, even if a camera user is shooting only to show their friends and family, they should still observe the right to privacy of their fellow participants, the same as we expect of the press and anyone else taking images in BRC. EVERY PARTICIPANT should be aware of the "Rights and Responsibilities for Media and Participants" at, whether they'll be behind the camera or in front of it.

Also new for 2011: personal use imagery may be licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike license, as outlined in the Terms and Conditions linked above - but *only* if your images do not contain nudity! As with all other camera use in BRC, you agree to ask permission and otherwise uphold your fellow participants' rights inside of Black Rock City. For more information on this license for 2011, see our Burning Blog post from January:

Finally, since with the loss of camera tags and Personal Use Agreement forms we are losing a potential avenue to identify lost camera owners, Retro from Community Services suggests that you take a shot of your contact info and leave the image on your camera or phone. This really helps with lost and found return efforts!

No comments:

Post a Comment