Break Out the Cell Phones

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A few days ago I posted an item about a sign in the new Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle that forbid visitors from taking pictures of one of the pieces there. Along the way I informed the world that photos were also banned in the New York City subway. Wrong!

In 2004, the Metropolitan Transit Authority, which runs the system, made a highly publicized proposal to ban photography as a security measure. Protests were loud enough however to make the MTA rethink the idea, which never came to a vote and was dropped a year later. But to compound the confusion, police were apparently instructed for a while to enforce the not-quite-official ban anyway. There’s a story about the collapse of the attempted ban here. And another one here about enforcement measures that went forward anyway while the ban was still just a talking point.


Thanks to an alert reader for setting the record straight and for putting my mind at ease. As I mentioned in my earlier post, I helped some tourists take a subway cell phone pic last summer and I’ve been waiting ever since to be hauled away by Homeland Security and waterboarded.