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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 41220
Experience:  I assist my clients with IP questions that arise in their daily course of doing business.
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I ride a bike in a public park in Pennsylvania. I have seen

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I ride a bike in a public park in Pennsylvania. I have seen other cyclists wearing sport cameras that record what they see during their workouts. I have been considering doing the same, but mainly for self-protection. On a number of occasions, some pedestrians have been somewhat inconsiderate or even verbally hostile towards me because they feel more entitled to use the designated bike path than cyclists. Furthermore, I have seen people breaking the law by riding motorcycles & ATVs and driving cars in the park, illegal dumping, etc., and endangering pedestrians. I have done my best to discreetly report these violations to the police, but have found it difficult to provide a thorough description that they could use to track the violators down at a later time, if necessary. In Pennsylvania, recording people without their consent is supposed to be illegal. How does this square with tourists using cameras, as well as cyclists like me using sport cameras? Would it be legal for me to print out images of violations I capture during a workout, if I was providing them only to law enforcement personnel?

Thank you for your question. I am a licensed Pennsylvania professional. Please permit me to assist you this afternoon.


The law in Pennsylvania pertaining to recordings is indeed an "all-party" consent statute. That means that all parties to a recording must consent to being recorded. There is, however, an exception based on situations where there is no 'reasonable expectation of privacy'. In other words, if someone is in a public place such as a public part, it is reasonable to assume that parties are filming one another so the law pertaining to consent does not apply. As a consequence images taken while in public are most definitely able to be taken, and can be shared with law enforcement without liability to the party taking the images for violating state law. If, for example, you are at the "Liberty Bell" pavilion and you see someone defacing it, as the pavilion is in open space where there is no reasonable expectation of privacy, you are free to take that image and share it with police.


Good luck.

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