MBTA photo permit

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MBTA photo permit

Postby MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 » Sun Mar 21, 2004 4:10 pm

i know this was in the old RR net forum, but i didn't get a chance to print the directions. Can someone give me reall good directions to the building where i can obtain a MBTA photo permit. Thanks :D
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Postby jdreed » Sun Mar 21, 2004 5:08 pm

I should add this to my FAQ :-)

Go to 10 Park Plaza (State Transportation Building - Green line to Boylston, walk west on Boylston for 1/2 block, then turn down alley to your left - you'll see "Transportation Building" at the end of the alley). Go through the food court to the escalators - get your bag searched at the security desk, and get a visistors permit - tell them you're going to Room 6720. Then go through the security desk to the elevators, take one up to 6. Walk to the left when you get off the elevators until the hallway ends. That's room 6720. There's never been anyone at the reception desk when I've been in there, but turn to the left as you go in, and look for PR & Marketing (or wait for someone to ask you what you're doing there). Tell them you want a photo permit - they'll want a photo ID from you (driver's license is fine). They may ask you why you want it, they may not. 'railfan' is an acceptable answer :-) Then 5 minutes later they'll come back with your license and a yellow photo permit. They'll want you to sign it, and the photocopy. And then you're all set. The permit is good for 3 months. (Make sure the expiration date is correctbefore you leave - I went in january, and they marked it as expiring in march 03, not march 04!)

And even though I got a grumpy response last time I posted this, i'll say it again, as there may be people here who don't know, or have never gotten a permit before. The permit is not carte blanche. If you act like it is, you're not going to endear yourself to the staff :-) You still need to leave or move if asked by a cop or inspector. Yes, some of them like to throw their weight around, but if you are polite and not endangering yourself or anyone else, they usually won't give you a hard time. And no tripods or flashes obviously.
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Postby MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 » Sun Mar 21, 2004 8:39 pm

thanks a lot jdreed :D
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Postby ST214 » Sun Mar 21, 2004 9:32 pm

And i am going to ask again. This photo permit only applies to the subways, right??? Also, when will they enforce it. Noone besides the office knows what one is. I even asked a senior inspector at Park St once, and he told me to keep taking pictures, as he had no clue as to what i was saying.
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Postby jrc520 » Sun Mar 21, 2004 10:23 pm

it applies everywhere. Keep one, just to be safe. It's free.

to get there, Boylston T stop, cross Boylston st. to the building with the Dunkin's in it. then, turn right, walking down Boylston st, until you see a gate and alleyway to your left. tons of people will be walking through it. take that left, go into the City Place building. Up the escalator, present ID, state MBTA Marketing, get sticker, go to the right of the guards, where the coke machines are in the glassed confrence area, then elevator, floor 6. at floor 6, take a left, all the way at the end on the right. go in, turn left past the open stairwell, ask the desk for a photo permit. enjoy
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MBTA Photo Permit

Postby ThinkNarrow » Sun Mar 21, 2004 11:40 pm

As a further embellishment to this discussion, here is the text that appears on the back of the permit immediately above where you sign your name:

"DISCLAIMER

By the acceptance of this privilege, the named photographer and the employer agree to relieve the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority of all responsibility for accident and injury and, further, by the acceptance of this privilege, the named photographer agrees not to trespass on any portion of the property of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority which is not ordinarily used by passengers and not to use strobe flash, floodlights or tripods. This pass is the property of the MBTA and must be returned on demand."

The front includes a bold box that says "All lines - Public areas only"
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Postby Xplorer2000 » Mon Mar 29, 2004 10:49 am

On a semi-related note, I was traveling inbound on the Blue Line this past Sunday, 3/28/04, and when we stopped at Maverick, an MBTA official that had been on board got on the trains P.A. syatem, and started bellowing at some one on the platform to: " put the camera away, sir. Photography is not allowed on MBTA property."Prior to that , he had laid on the horn entering the station for some reason , probably to disrupt the cameraman's activities.(The platform wasn't THAT crowded.) Strikes me as a tad on the rude side.
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Postby efin98 » Mon Mar 29, 2004 9:30 pm

Fear of getting caught doing something againt the rules or illegal cause them to blurt out something as stupid as that. Surprising for the Blue Line, the inspectors are usually tame compared to other places.
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Postby vanshnookenraggen » Tue Mar 30, 2004 1:36 am

Whenever I take pics on the T I try to be quick and subtle. I was taking some pictures at Broadway when someone walked up to me and told me that it was illegal. It wasn’t a cop but someone who knew a lot of people at the T.....interesting fellow...to say the least.

I don't like to take pics when there are a lot of people around, but you can never really plan on that. Also, I look to see if there are any T personnel around. If there are I usually hold off.

It is a shame, I see people taking pictures all the time yet they usually yell at tourists.
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Postby jwhite07 » Tue Mar 30, 2004 10:22 am

Whenever I take pics on the T I try to be quick and subtle. I was taking some pictures at Broadway when someone walked up to me and told me that it was illegal. It wasn’t a cop but someone who knew a lot of people at the T.....interesting fellow...to say the least.


Well, there's your problem right there. A whole lotta people have somehow been ingrained with this fantasy that photography on the T is "illegal", and by God they know what they're talking about. Such people have apparently successfully indoctrinated a high number of MBTA employees with this folly.

Well, if it's illegal to take photos on MBTA property, I challenge anyone, especially the folks that are so zealous in perpetuating and enforcing it, to point out to me the Massachusetts General Law that specifically states that it is against the law to take photographs on MBTA property. Good luck trying to find such a law, because THERE ISN'T ONE.

Photography on the MBTA is legal. Period. Now, the MBTA does have a policy that photo permits are required. I don't think there's any real legal teeth behind that requirement either, but I'll play along. Why? It's a courtesy gesture to the MBTA to let 'em know who's out there aimimg a camera at their stuff... and it is a great way to blunt confrontations with those who have bought into the "photos are illegal" fantasy. And besides, in this day and age you are far more likely to be called in as a suspicious individual. Having a permit on you might be enough to make a very long conversation with authorities into a much shorter one.

ST214 - I assume the photo permit is and has always tehnically is meant to apply everywhere on the MBTA system. In practice, however, it has long been really necessary, as in to head off the high likelihood of being challenged, only on subway lines and perhaps at the major commuter rail terminals. Commuter Rail folks are generally far more acclimated to and tolerant of railfan activities, and there is an entirely different culture there as well. But again, in this day and age who knows when, and by whom, you may be challenged? It cannot do anything but help if you get a photo permit and keep it with you no matter where on the system you are.

The following was posted from time to time on the old forum... it's probably not a bad idea to reference it again here and now (and maybe add a link for it to that MBTA FAQ that someone is working on?):

THE PHOTOGRAPHER'S RIGHT
http://www.krages.com/phoright.htm

IMHO this is a must to carry around with you when taking photographs!!
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Postby jwhite07 » Tue Mar 30, 2004 10:26 am

Whenever I take pics on the T I try to be quick and subtle. I was taking some pictures at Broadway when someone walked up to me and told me that it was illegal. It wasn’t a cop but someone who knew a lot of people at the T.....interesting fellow...to say the least.


Well, there's your problem right there. A whole lotta people have somehow been ingrained with this fantasy that photography on the T is "illegal", and by God they know what they're talking about. Such people have apparently successfully indoctrinated a high number of MBTA employees with this folly.

Well, if it's illegal to take photos on MBTA property, I challenge anyone, especially the folks that are so zealous in perpetuating and enforcing it, to point out to me the Massachusetts General Law that specifically states that it is against the law to take photographs on MBTA property. Good luck trying to find such a law, because THERE ISN'T ONE.

Photography on the MBTA is legal. Period. Now, the MBTA does have a policy that photo permits are required. I don't think there's any real legal teeth behind that requirement either, but I'll play along. Why? It's a courtesy gesture to the MBTA to let 'em know who's out there aimimg a camera at their stuff... and it is a great way to blunt confrontations with those who have bought into the "photos are illegal" fantasy. And besides, in this day and age you are far more likely to be called in as a suspicious individual. Having a permit on you might be enough to make a very long conversation with authorities into a much shorter one.

ST214 - I assume the photo permit is and has always tehnically is meant to apply everywhere on the MBTA system. In practice, however, it has long been really necessary, as in to head off the high likelihood of being challenged, only on subway lines and perhaps at the major commuter rail terminals. Commuter Rail folks are generally far more acclimated to and tolerant of railfan activities, and there is an entirely different culture there as well. But again, in this day and age who knows when, and by whom, you may be challenged? It cannot do anything but help if you get a photo permit and keep it with you no matter where on the system you are.

The following was posted from time to time on the old forum... it's probably not a bad idea to reference it again here and now (and maybe add a link for it to that MBTA FAQ that someone is working on?):

THE PHOTOGRAPHER'S RIGHT
http://www.krages.com/phoright.htm

IMHO this is a must to carry around with you when taking photographs!!
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Postby CSX Conductor » Tue Mar 30, 2004 9:11 pm

"Insepectors" and "Cheif Inspectors".....now theres some $$$ going to waste. (In my opinion). Seems that all they do is right down car numbers suring rush hour. Anyone know their specific job description according to the MBTA?

Jonathan, perhaps you have any info?
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Postby jwhite07 » Wed Mar 31, 2004 9:56 am

I don't know what an Inspector or Chief Inspector's actual job description looks like, but their job is a bit more than jotting down car numbers! They're also the troubleshooters responsible for dealing with service disruptions, adjusting headways to fill service gaps, being the on-scene responders for incidents, and so on. It's always sounded to me that an Inspector's job is pretty much akin to, say, a railroad trainmaster. Unlike trainmasters, though, Inspectors are union employees.

I believe "The Collector at Court Street" is one... perhaps he can comment if he wishes to.
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Postby Robert Paniagua » Mon Apr 05, 2004 5:58 am

That's right, but they also get to "play policeman" too. I've seen it before a few times, so I guess you don't need a badge, handcuffs, guns, or radio capabilities to run a WMS/BOP to police the T propreties, according to these inspectours.
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Postby efin98 » Mon Apr 05, 2004 8:56 am

Robert Paniagua wrote:That's right, but they also get to "play policeman" too. I've seen it before a few times, so I guess you don't need a badge, handcuffs, guns, or radio capabilities to run a WMS/BOP to police the T propreties, according to these inspectours.


uh Rob I think they actually have the power to do that, but they have to turn over offenders to the T Police though.
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