Blur license plates on photos - ethical or wrong?

Started Jun 13, 2012 | Discussions thread
Spurtz
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Re: Blur license plates on photos - ethical or wrong?
In reply to Sethboy, Jul 17, 2012

Sethboy wrote:

When publishing a photo (newspaper, online media, or even just uploading to Flickr, etc) is it ethical / good idea / not necessary to blur out the license plates of vehicles in the picture? Either a heavy blur; or cutting out the part of the image completely? I know this borders on Photoshop issues related to journalism. Anyone have any professional input?

It's not required because of three important points:

1. The owner of the car doesn't own the plates.
2. I don't need a camera to see a licence plate.

3. What could anyone do with knowing the number on the plate? Questionable ethics would come into play if someone could use the number to get more info.

And a point that drives me nuts: "Licence" is a noun, as in "licence plate". "License" is a verb, as in "to license a driver".

Same goes for "practice" and "practise".

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