What Is Muni’s Photography Policy?? | WHAT IM SEEING dot comComment by zippy_monster

May 7, 2009 @ 9:01 pm
Somehow I feel better about giving the fare cops a piece of my mind today. While there was no inbound L service for an extended period of time this AM (I walked from ~30th Ave to West Portal without seeing a single inbound train), there were two teams of fare cops loitering at West Portal. In fact, the female team of fare cops was surprised that there were two teams laying in wait for a nearly empty two-car M.
I had one fare cop hold the doors of the train open, puff up his chest, and start spouting stuff at me at Van Ness because I took his picture. Why did I take the picture? There were about five or six of them doing absolutely nothing.
Anyhow. Fare inspectors don’t have much authority, and if they’re anything but polite, they haven’t done anything to deserve your respect. They’re not police officers, they cannot give you anything other than a citation (for fare evasion — if they even know what to do with your TransLink card — most I’ve seen won’t even run it through their handheld reader).
What I would recommend is this: find or create a photographer’s bill of rights type thing, print it out, and carry it with you. Maybe get a letter from whomever at the MTA about this. When one of the fare cops gives you a hard time about this, show them the card, and offer to call the real cops.
P.S. Baldie over there is usually a pretty decent person. If he’s the same obese, bald, white guy I’ve seen… he’ll actually try to be helpful from time to time.
P.P.S @hey-0: absolutely correct, however the fare “cops” that the MTA employs are not well known for being eh… smart or polite. For the longest time, I’d see them congregate around the easy targets (Powell for the confused tourists for example), and ignore situations where more effort might be required.