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Old 12-28-2012, 06:19 AM   #5
New User
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 23

Again, I apologize for the length of this post. This subject has been a sore spot for me for years.

I pushed this issue in my section, and all the way up to White Plains legal dept. Their decision, predictably, is to defer to the complainers. You can put your camera up, but if anyone complains, you have to take it down. I asked the USTA to make a decision either allowing any parent to video their own kid's match, or deny all video. They would never ban all video since they derive a profit from the video of national championships, so I was hopeful they would do the right thing and allow us to video to make our players better, thus advancing the sport as a whole.

They came back with ridiculous rationale for limiting our right to film our own kids with things such as "what if there is an objection on religious grounds?" Really? Its a voluntary event, in mostly public venues. If you don't want to participate you don't have to. What if my opponent objects to tennis attire on religious grounds? Do I have to clothe my player in a burka to satisfy them?

Every football, soccer, and baseball game is filled with parents filming the game, but tennis is different? Why? There is no law prohibiting the filming of minors with or without their parent's permission as long as you do not disclose any personal information about them, or otherwise defame them. You don't have to ask everyone's permission when you take a video or picture at Disney do you? Or the beach, or at any group event.

The USTA is afraid of being sued by the whiners. We who only want to help our player improve are unlikely to cause a stink, so we are kicked to the curb.

Ever notice that to participate in national championships you have to sign a release allowing the USTA to video or take pictures of your player, or you can't play? But they won't extend that right to you taking video of your own kid.

Some psychotic parents think that you will use the tape to gain an advantage over their player. Please. I have so much to work on with my player, I don't have time to worry about theirs. I am not trying to video their player. I am taping mine. It is unfortunate that theirs keeps getting in the frame.

All the USTA would have to do is put it in the Code that you can tape your own player. There are already laws that apply to misuse of video of minors. The USTA doesn't have to do anything but allow you to live within the existing laws, but they won't.

If any of you know a tennis enthusiast who is also a lawyer, perhaps they could file a suit on our behalf asserting that our first amendment rights are being infringed.
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