Its true some members of the EDL (English Defence League) don’t like having their photographs taken they are after all associated with a group often called racist and fascist, some of its supporters undeniably are people who have supported other far right groups responsible for racist attacks. The EDL is blamed by some for causing racist violence. There can be no denying many people find EDL activities offensive and frightening.
Still I think its still valid to know what they are doing and saying. Especially in this week when the previous leaders of the EDL have resigned to distance themselves from the racism and violence the group has become associated with. I think it might be interesting to know how the remaining EDL will manifest itself. But this man above thinks you should not see or hear about them. He threatened to arrest me for being a journalist covering the EDL assembly today in Bradford. He was under the impression the EDL did not want any journalism done. He thought that EDL people did not want any photographs made, and therefore it was the police’s job to enforce a press ban at the EDL’s request. Er…….. ? Yeah……. run that by me again? If a far right political group want to suppress journalism …… the police just do it for them? I have to say I was slightly shocked.
One of the reasons given was that I had to leave the area was for my own safety. Its true people have been injured covering this kind of political event, myself included, but that really is our call as journalists. I had already been operating just fine making images of the EDL without provoking any trouble before I was spotted by the police. The thought that the police get to decide what is a valid story or what is a valid risk to get a story is slightly worrying.
I am already worried about the gradual disappearance of the ordinary right to make photographs in Britain. This felt like another frightening development where effectively the press were all ‘kettled’ as they call it in police parlance …….. all media people were held in one place away from the EDL rally so as you could not see the rally clearly or really hear what was being said.
I was threatened with arrest by the policeman pictured above if I did not go to the area to be held with the other media people.
When the rally was over we were let out and invited to go to a police press conference? So run that past me again ? We are not allowed to cover the actual event but we are invited to regurgitate the police view of what happened ? Suffice to say I politely declined their invitation. Why would I do that ? Where we had been held for what felt like hours in the freezing rain I had a pretty good view of the cops just not much of a view of the EDL.
Never mind the freedom and democracy issues at stake here. On an entirely practical level for freelance photographers they could at least announce the press ban while I am in London. By this stage I have driven half the length of the country sitting in massive traffic jams on the M1 only to be told the police have banned any journalism or photography on behalf of the EDL, well I have to say its pretty irritating ……… I didn’t even know they had such powers?
You know me I am very much in favor of a free press. This kind of control of journalism is already happening ordinarily all over the place in the UK, what will it be like by the time publications are having to register with government authorities as was announced this week through the cosy alliance of government and opposition politicians against the free press? I find it all depressing.
Anyway as all I could really see from where they put us was the cops themselves so here is the kind of picture they must have wanted us to make.
Cheers Jez XXXXXXXXXXXX
[ 19 ] c omments
It’s getting to the point wher e y ou will only be able to r epor t on s ubjec ts the gov er nment
or polic e deem fit to pr int. Who would’v e thought,
1984 is alr eady upon us . 451 c an’t be to far in away .
Rober tB @ O c tober 13, 2013, 6:48 am
Its tr ue ……. i hav e to s ay its jus t a matter of being polite then its ov er for a fr
ee pr es s ……. I do think jour nalis ts s hould not nec es s ar ily alway s be polite es
pec ially not polite when polic e ar e ac tiv ely ov er eac hing their power s pec ific
ally to s hut down jour nalis m…… all the other jour no folk s s eemed to jus t politely
leav e when r equir ed to by the polic e……. i think i was the only idiot phy s ic ally dr agged
off and dumped into the pr es s holding pen …… the BBC etc …… s hould r epor t on the fac t
that the polic e ar e r equir ing them to r epor t fr om a tightly c ontr olled holding ar ea away
fr om the r ally the way they ar e alway s k een to point out when they ar e not fr ee to wander
about in any r epr es s iv e s tate.
Cheer s J ez XXXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 14, 2013, 7:42 am
What fr ee pr es s ?…ther e’s a few blogger s ar ound the wor ld tr y ing to get the tr uth out,
the r es t ar e jus t r eading out pr es s r eleas es on 24 hour news c hannels who put mor e money
and effor t into whiz bang gr aphic s than they do to any r eal jour nalis m.
If they get c ontr ol ov er the inter net too, whic h they ar e deper ately tr y ing to do, we’r e
all well and tr uely fuc k ed. http://www.theguar dian.c om/media/media blog/2013/s ep/27/s ey
mour her s h obama ns a amer ic an media
Har v .! @ O c tober 13, 2013, 1:01 pm
“O ur job is to find out our s elv es , our job is not jus t to s ay – her e’s a debate’ our job is
to go bey ond the debate and find out who’s r ight and who’s wr ong about is s ues . T hat does n’t
happen enough. It c os ts money , it c os ts time, it jeopar dis es , it r ais es r is k s . T her
e ar e s ome people – the New Yor k T imes s till has inv es tigativ e jour nalis ts but they do
muc h mor e of c ar r y ing water for the pr es ident than I ev er thought they would … it’s lik e
y ou don’t dar e be an outs ider any mor e.”
I agr ee with the thr us t of s ome of this by SH ……. he is attac k ing the timidity of mains
tr eam jour nalis m es pec ially in Amer ic a……. but its als o an appeal to har dc or e news or
ganiz ations to r eally do it……… indiv idual blogger s har dly ev er hav e the power or r es
our c es to r eally inv es tigate and hold to ac c ount gov er nment or c or por ations ……. har
dc or e news or ganiz ations c an do it.
T he G uar dian on all thes e NSA leak s …… T he Daily Mail on the k iller s of
Stephen Lawr enc e etc ……… y ou dont hav e to lik e ev er y thing they do to under s
tand they hav e the power to look and inv es tigate ev en hold to ac c ount. But only if they ar e
and hav e mas s r eader s hip…… the Mail is mor e able to r un thos e power ful inv es
tigations than the G uar dian but pr obably les s inc lined…… but don’t let the fac t that
they ar e mos tly doing c elebr ity s tor ies or what hav e y ou mak e y ou think they hav e no r
oll in pr oper jour nalis m.
Ev en the News of T he Wor ld br ok e the s tor y of c or r uption in Cr ic k et. News paper s es
pec ially the inpolite Br itis h what us ed to be c alled ‘Red T ops ‘ ac tually ar e a pr
oper power bas e in their own r ight. You k now I lov e independent blogger s but I s
till feel news paper s and pr offes s ional media ar e v ital to mak e r eal jour nalis m. J our
nalis m that is s eper ate fr om r umour monger ing and gos s ip that is mas quar ading as news
on the net.
You ar e r ight to be war y of the PR abus es of jour nalis m…..
Its r ight to be s c eptic al of mains tr eam media but dont thr ow out the baby with the bath
water : ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Cheer s br o J ez XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 14, 2013, 8:05 am
T he pr oblem is that the baby ‘s c ov er ed in dir t and it is n’t c oming off ?
F or get tr y ing to hear the tr uth about ev ents if the ev ents ar e c ov er ed in the fir s t
plac e…dar k times for fr eedom of the pr es s and fr eedom in gener al.
Har v .! @ O c tober 14, 2013, 1:37 pm
T r ue enough br o : ) ) ) ) ) Cheer s J ez XXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 14, 2013, 5:03 pm
How nic e for y ou!..Mus t be lov ely , s pending all that time + money tr av elling to be able to
s tar e at the bac k of a polic eman for an hour or s o! What a totally r ewar ding job.. Deep br
eathes Mate..Apar t fr om that, I hope all is good Br o x x x
PaulS @ O c tober 13, 2013, 2:53 pm
Ah the joy of a gr im r ainy O c tober after noon in Br adfor d c ould nev er be diminis hed es pec
ially not by a depr es s ing mix tur e of EDL and Mus lim defenc e league ty pes fighting and name
c alling and c ops c alling photogr aphy illegal holding me in a c old wet pr es s penitentiar y
……. oh y eah……and the s light matter of pour ing r ain and jams both up and down on the
M1……… no ……. the glamour of the photojour nalis t’s life s hone thr ough this week end
br o……. : /// : ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) hehehehe…………. hope y ou wer e hav ing an ev en
better week end hehehe…….
Cheer s br o J ez XXXXXXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 14, 2013, 9:16 am
T otally depr es s ing mate, Stas i s ty le polic e c ens or s hip that would go down well ov er
her e, a bunc h of r ight wing thugs holding a r ally , and wor s e s till….being in Br adfor d
on a r ainy day ….aaaar gh gr imnes s …I on the other hand am off to the is land par adis e of
Phu Q uoc in two week s ..y ou s hould get ov er her e to c heer y our s elf up : ) ) )
Vo Nguy en G iap teeth @ O c tober 13, 2013, 11:41 pm
T he depr es s ing thing is the Br itis h Polic e hav e br ok en mor e of my c amer a gear than any
other ins titution……… and they r eally jus t don’t ev en think about it they jus t s hut down
pr es s fr eedom at the r eques t of the EDL? Whats goin on in their br ains ? Some one s hould
tell them in this bus ines s they ar e s uppos eded to be pr otec ting the population fr om the thr
eat of pos s ible fac s is t ac tiv ity not ac ting out a fac s it agenda………
Br adfor d……. man it was s o gr im….. the r ain nev er s topped it was c old…. the EDL
wer e gr im, the c ops wer e gr im, the mus lim defenc e league wer e gr im….. as I r etur ned
to my c ar a tax i pulled up s ome y obs jumped out laughing…. it bec ame c lear they had not
paid the dr iv er ….. they jus t r an off…….. the v er y polite mus lim tax i dr iv er got
out and watc hed them r un away he s eemed lik e the nic es t per s on i had met all day and jus t
got r ipped off bec aus e of it he was not gr im enough for that day in Br adfor d …….. y eah
that was a fittingly depr es s ing inc ident to hold in y our mind as y ou dr iv e away fr om Br adfor d
as the winds c r een wiper s s tr uggle to let y ou s ee into the gloom.
Dude I gotta c ome ov er ………. ah the is land par adis e of Phu Q uoc …….. now that s
ounds a tr ifle mor e appealing than Br adfor d I
gotta admit …….. : ) ) ) ) ) )
Cheer s Br o J ez XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 14, 2013, 9:37 am
If he’s managed to ac tually c hannel his inner Her c ule Poir ot, and s omehow managed
to mir ac ulous ly loc ate his own image in the blogos pher e…then I’d jus t lik e to let
him k now that he look s lik e a ty pic al ignor ant Yor k s hir e Pig…but then that would be c r
editing him with deduc tiv e gifts that he pr obably does n’t ac tually pos s es s ..poor pok ey
piggie : ( (
J ames Ander ton x x @ O c tober 15, 2013, 1:21 pm
He was r ight up ther e as leading c ontender bulls hitting away about how we ar e jus t gonna
walk down her e to dis c us s it befor e gr abbing y ou then dr agging y ou off……….. Mind u s
ome of thos e EDL blok es did not want any media c ov er age ??? ……. a demo wher e the pr es s
is banned by the demons tr ater s ?? …….. er ……. thats the point is n’t it??? T o demons tr
ate y our pos ition…… er y ou k now on a demons tr ation…… other wis e y ou c ould jus t s
tay at home and no one would k now…… but if y ou go out to demons tate the point is for people
to k now s ur ely ???? ….. er ????
Lotta wor k for Char ity …… Cheer s br o J ez XXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 18, 2013, 3:37 pm
I meant poor por k y piggie : ) ) And while I’m on the s ubjec t of the Wes t Yor k s filth..let’s
not for get their c r iminal mis management of the
Ripper enquir y and their c har ming habit of fitting up mentally ill people for c r imes that they
hadn’t c ommitted..
G eor ge O ldfield : ) ) @ O c tober 15, 2013, 1:25 pm
lotta wor k for c har ity …….
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 18, 2013, 3:31 pm
Dis gr ac eful ( though not a new Polic e tac tic J ez ) I think the photogr apher s c ould hav e
s tood up to the polic e on this oc c as ion if they had done s o together … without needing s
ome dr ac onian Roy al Char ter ! J ohn H
J ohn Har r is @ O c tober 16, 2013, 9:06 am
No one needs a Roy al Char ter ex c ept a per haps a r oy al c or gi ……. pr es s
need to s tand together agains t abs olutely all this r egulation s hiite …… y ou ar e s
o r ight about that J ohn…….. s adly in this inc ident the BBC and all the other Nor ther n c
r ews and c or r es pondents ( non of whom I k new) s eemed to think ther e was no is s ue ?
…. ev en though I liter ally c ould not s ee or ev en pr oper ly hear fr om wher e we wer e r
equir ed to s tand… and I s hot liter ally nothing fr om ther e……. I had s hot a ton mor e
befor e and s ome after I was c aptur ed …… mos t s eemed to hav e s pent their entir e day ‘pr
otec ted ‘ by the c ops god k nows what the s tills guy s ac tually s hot fr om the ‘pr es s
pen’??? But it did s eem that no one wanted to mak e a fus s ……. i was liter ally dr agged off
by the c ops c os I would not agr ee to c omply ……… but s adly mos t folk s appar ently pr
efer r ed a muc h politer appr oac h and appear ed to meek ly ac c ept the polic e pr es s ban :
Cheer s Br o J ez XXXXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 18, 2013, 3:30 pm
Did y ou s ee that Robin Hammond had won the Eugene Smith memor ial awar d? Dar k r oom dev eloper
: ) ) @ O c tober 17, 2013, 11:17 pm
Wow……. s till u got to hand it to him he has been c onc entr ating on s ome heav y s
hiite…… he des er v es it : ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) )
Cheer s J ez XXXXXXXXX
J ez blog : ) ) XXX @ O c tober 18, 2013, 3:11 pm
T his guy ‘s fac e is s tar ting to depr es s me..let’s hav e s ome mor e mad c olour !
Shtev oi F or r es tik oi x x @ O c tober 19, 2013, 6:53 pm