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Atlanta to Repeal Ban on Photography in Public Spaces

The city of Atlanta will repeal an ordinance that forbids photography “on the streets and sidewalks of the city in front of any place of business other than the person’s own,” report Jennifer Brett and Katie Leslie for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The law, which dates back to 1977, drew attention recently when it was used to keep several photographers from taking pictures near the movie set for the upcoming film “Passengers,” which stars Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt. Legal experts regard the law as an unconstitutional violation of the First Amendment. Georgia First Amendment Foundation executive director Hollie Manheimer added, “This ordinance will not withstand a court challenge.”

A letter was sent to city authorities by an attorney for the National Press Photographers Association, after which the mayor released a directive saying the ordinance “should not be used or referenced as a possible charge,” and announced plans to have it repealed.