In the days following the TUC “March for the Alternative” anti-cuts protest on Saturday 26 March 2011 some media outlets published rogues galleries of 18 people sought by police for questioning, with some of the images gathered from news outlets, not just CCTV. One television news report freeze-framed on a masked protestor, the narrator saying: “Do you recognise this person?”
The Metropolitan police force have requested all of the BBC’s footage of the day to use in their investigation into the disorder.
On Tuesday 5 April 2011 motion the LPB committee overwhelmingly passed a motion condemning in the strongest terms news-gathered images and video used as police evidence material and the publication of police rogue galleries as news reports.
Covering protests, both nationally and internationally, is already difficult and often dangerous. The danger to photographers and videographers is increased dramatically when protestors fear the images and video gathered whilst reporting events could be used by the state. With many accounts of injuries and equipment damage already reported from March 26, the actions of these news outlets only increases that risk for journalists working in the street.