Bill Introduced in Florida Would Make Photographing Farms a Felony

A bill recently introduced by Florida state senator Jim Norman would, if passed, making taking pictures of farms a felony unless permission is granted by the owner.

A person who photographs, video records or otherwise produces images or pictorial records, digital or otherwise, at or of a farm or other property where legitimate agriculture operations are being conducted without the written consent of the owner, or an authorized representative of the owner, commits a felony of the first degree. [#]

Apparently the bill is meant to deter animal rights activists from secretly posing as farmworkers to make hidden camera videos of animals being abused. Needless to say, a lot of photographers aren’t very pleased.

(via Boing Boing)

Image credit: Webpage Farms? by ASurroca

  • anon

    all of those horrible animal rights activists secretly posing as farmworkers to make hidden camera videos of animals being abused. how dare they.

  • pffft

    only in america! what a sad country.

  • Daniel Austin Hoherd

    I’m kind of amazed at what other activities are on the list of most common felonies (, so it’s not such a stretch that a photographic crime would be on that list, but calling photography of any location that is visible to the public a crime is ludicrous.

  • videoflyer

    And yet, James O’Keefe can continue his hyper-manipulative, vigilante video capers unencumbered? The GOP are radicalized to a ridiculous degree.

  • A_dairy_cow

    Is this law really aimed at preventing animal activists from photographing farming practices?


    Is it intended to let farmers continue to employ illegal immigrant farm labor without this activity being photographed?

  • Norman

    Socialism ? I thought that this is a bad word in America ? Well this is certainly no liberalism. So go on Norman go and make your communistic land, where everything is instated for the rich (e.g. the farmers) and not for the activists who a country needs !

  • Article19

    that’s never gonna pass, contradicts the first amendment, even if it did pass it would be overturned in a heart-beat by the courts.

  • Anonymous

    O’Keefe didn’t go unencumbered, he did get sentenced to a few hundred hours of community service for his last “prank”.

    I can understand farmers not wanting to be O’Keefed, but this is terrible way to go. It won’t pass constitutional muster, but the only way to have standing is to be charged with this “crime”.

  • Dennis Strickland

    Taking a picture is becoming more of a crime than stealing from someone.

  • Joe Dyndale

    This is exactly why I feel, rather strongly, that there should be some kind of minimum IQ requirement for politicians. This Norman guy is just plain stupid if he indeed introduced a bill with that wording for that purpose.

    Anyway, couldn’t the laws prohibiting industrial spionage be used against these particular activists? Or the farmers could make their farmworkers sign NDAs and other restricting contracts…

    Not that I want these activists to be prevented in doing their thing.

  • Mold and Mildew Removal

    Pic came out amazing as always.thanks.

  • Read the Actual Bill be fair, the bill states, “A person who ENTERS onto a farm…without written consent…” Farms are private properties and often, people’s homes. Anyone who enters farms/private properties without permission are essentially trespassing. It would be if someone comes into your home without your permission and take pictures of your properties and post them on the internet.

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  • Mayanjatropha

    in our instance…code enforcement used a Special Ops detective to trespass on our property…break open a shed and a travel trailer to photograph contents..and the trailer then pass it on to Code Enforcement to fine us 50.dollars a day and threaten forclosure on private property….stating that it is environmental land which it is not…they use everything in the book to get rid of mom & pop farms…the other side of the coin…

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  • Just Visiting

    There are laws for trespassing, this is especially for photographing animals.

  • Anton Berlin

    It’s going to get harder and harder to document the Amerikan Police State but we still have a lot to learn from China and the North Koreans.