Sunday, 5 August 2012

Happy for snaps at Fairlynch

In line with a growing tendency by UK museums to allow the use of cameras on their premises Fairlynch has decided that photography by visitors will be permitted under certain circumstances. 

For many years there has been a ban on any kind of filming in galleries and museums but with the growing use of technology such as smartphones many institutions have abandoned the attempt to impose an absolute rule.

The Tate galleries, the National Museum of Wales and the National Maritime Museum are among institutions which permit non-flash photography without the use of a tripod for personal use only.

Others, like Cambridge's Scott Polar Research Institute, rule that photographs taken by visitors must not be reproduced or published in any form, including on the internet, without permission.  Nearer home, the Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter is even more liberal in permitting flash and tripods, although consideration for other visitors is expected and a ban on photography still applies in some of its temporary galleries.

Smaller museums are showing themselves to be more than ready to follow such trends.

Sam Elliott, Transition Manager at Bolton Library and Museum Service,  believes that the traditional ban on any type of photography is too hard to police.

"The majority of people have cameras on their phones," she said. "It's a compliment that they want to take pictures in the museum."

Dartmouth Museum was one of the Devon museums which changed its rules this year to allow photography except for flash and tripods. Fairlynch has now adopted the same policy allowing cameras for non-commercial use, although our Museum is happy for tripods to be used provided that a steward is consulted. A donation is appreciated.

The issue has caused much scratching of heads among museum professionals. Click on  for an insight.

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