CONTROVERSIAL: A photo policy from the ARC has caused a stir.
CONTROVERSIAL: A photo policy from the ARC has caused a stir. Jacob Carson

Gympie centre's photo policy stirs up online criticism

A CONTROVERSIAL photo policy adopted by Gympie's Aquatic Recreation Centre has been met with criticism online.

The policy attempts to police photographic behaviour of patrons, despite many mums and dads insisting they are just after a family snap at the pool.

With patrons now required to wear a lanyard and show staff any images that are taken at the facility, Australia's leading civil libertarian Terry O'Gorman said the rules were an "infringement of the privacy of the vast majority of people doing the right thing.”

He said it was an issue that had been brought before the Standing Committee of the Attorney General about five years ago. It was subsequently considered to be an "overreaction”, according to Mr O'Gorman.

One of the world's foremost legal minds, Mr O'Gorman did not hold back in his assessment.

"We really have to avoid the situation where we become a nation of spies,” he said.

"The real way of dealing with the problem is the common sense approach.”

Sarah Gosling agreed and thought the policy was "way over the top.”

"I'm sure they can work out a mother taking photos of their child in the water park is different to a pervert taking photos,” she said.

"I once did the right thing and followed their rules then spent 10 minutes waiting at the desk to hand back the lanyard while they continued to serve people that came after me.

"I ended up leaving the lanyard on the desk and walking away.”

Ira Areora asked "what right do they (ARC) have?”

"There is no laws against a private citizen taking photos in a public place,” she said.

Krystal Hardie asked if the ARC were going to do police checks.

"Are they going to do a police check on every patron upon entering as well to stop pedophiles from accessing the pool?” she said.

Elisha Treasure believes the policy promotes healthy interaction.

"On the other side of the scale, how nice is it to see parents watching their children and interacting with them than on their phones the whole time they are there?” she said.

In an online poll, 87 per cent of 250 readers said the ARC's photo policy was overly strict, with 13 percent endorsing it.

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