Censorship?: Concern over no Gaga pics

2012-11-30 00:00

“GOT my flash on, it’s true; Need that picture of you.”

Lady Gaga’s fans may be reminded of the lyrics to her famous song Paparazzi, after a ban on press photographs at her shows in South Africa.

The South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) has expressed its concern about what they call press censorship for her concerts in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Mpumelelo Mkhabela, Sanef’s Media Freedom Committee chairperson, said in a statement that the decision to only make available selected publicity photographs was a form of press censorship, and it was in conflict with the Constitution.

“Previous accepted practices at such events has been for accredited news photographers to be allowed to take pictures during the first three songs and then to withdraw,” said Mkhabela.

Organisers have said no news photography will be allowed at the concerts.

“This appears to be the first time that such a ban has been imposed, and Sanef will be seeking an urgent meeting with the organisers to explain the negative implications of their move to media freedom.”

When contacted by The Witness, Big Concerts’ John Langford declined to comment on the ban. He also said that he was not aware of a meeting with Sanef.

Another spokesperson, Dionne Domyan, said cellphone cameras will be allowed, but no professional cameras.

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