Rights of MSNBC predators?
December 8, 2007 12:49 PM   Subscribe

Don't the Predators on "To Catch a Predator" have any rights regarding their image being used on TV?

I'm sure you all have seen MSNBC's Dateline show "To Catch a Predator." I have seen other shows where people who do not want their image used on TV have their face blurred, I am assuming this is because they didn't give permission to the network? If permission is required from the individual, why don't the predators have an say-so in having MSNBC use their image? I am not defending these monsters, but I sure as hell would do all I could to make sure I am not on TV in that capacity! I assume Chris Hanson isn't handing over a release form for them to sign =)
posted by princeofpersiaxz to Media & Arts (16 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Previously.
posted by pravit at 1:02 PM on December 8, 2007


Heh, if Chris Hansen hadn't have stepped in, they would have not had sex with a nonexistent child. What monsters indeed!

Seriously though, I think the reason they can be shown on television sans signed release is the involvement of the authorities, and the predator's subsequent arrest. You can show the photograph of a felon or suspected felon on television without their consent, unless they're a minor.
posted by tehloki at 1:14 PM on December 8, 2007


My answer, the first one in that previous thread, was damned good.
posted by jayder at 1:21 PM on December 8, 2007


I think it's more embarrassing to get caught watching a show like this than to get caught being a child molester. It's amazing this show airs on NBC, amazing anyone watches it, and amazing the intellectual level of some of the responses this issue provokes.

for example: "Hopefully, the dirt bag low lives scum of the earth predators get eaten up in jail."

As was said in the previous thread, I assume the ones on the episodes that air are the who got convicted. The ones who get the charges dismissed because of the meddling of the tv network in the legal process, then go on to molest more kids- I assume those never air.
posted by drjimmy11 at 1:44 PM on December 8, 2007


I really think a big part of it is that they venture onto private property. It's not like (minus that one guy they met at McDonalds, where the whole "expectation of privacy" thing comes into play) they're in a public place, they're inside someone's house.
posted by TomMelee at 3:14 PM on December 8, 2007


i thnk that people convenienly overlook that fact because the person involved intended to have sex with a minor. i, however, think they have certain rights. the real question is: shouldn't they garner some of the advertising proceeds from their appearance on the show?
posted by Davaal at 3:43 PM on December 8, 2007


I always assumed that they were offered a shorter sentance for appearing on the air.
posted by thebrokenmuse at 3:44 PM on December 8, 2007


...shouldn't they garner some of the advertising proceeds from their appearance on the show?

That would probably run smack into those "you may not profit from your crime" laws many states have, that forbid a convicted individual from, say, writing a book about the crime and profiting from the sales.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:08 PM on December 8, 2007


That would probably run smack into those "you may not profit from your crime" laws many states have.

Even though one could probably present a case, I don't think it's a crime to appear with Chris Hanson on television.
posted by rokusan at 4:24 PM on December 8, 2007 [2 favorites]


shouldn't they garner some of the advertising proceeds from their appearance on the show?

That's like saying O.J. Simpson should garner some of the advertising proceeds that accrued to CNN and other news channels due to the intense public fascination with his killing of his wife and Ron Goldman.

What these people are doing is "news." The subject of a news story is not entitled to any of the proceeds.
posted by jayder at 6:40 PM on December 8, 2007


I think it's more embarrassing to get caught watching a show like this than to get caught being a child molester....
posted by drjimmy11 at 4:44 PM on December 8


*keeps kids away from drjimmy11 ....
posted by caddis at 8:01 PM on December 8, 2007


I'm wondering if some of these people wouldn't sign releases anyway. I recall hearing one of the producers of Cops asked the same thing, since there is some blurring of faces on that show, but not nearly as much as you'd think. Apparently with their show's format, they do need to get permission, but it's apparently very easy to get. After the suspects are caught/apprehended/wrestled to the ground/pepper sprayed/tazed, etc., many go through a very strange transformation when they find out that their chase/arrest is going to be on TV. The producers said some of them start whooping, laughing, crying like they won the lottery and they're only too happy to sign a release. The sudden arrival of "your 15 minutes" and all that seems to distort peoples' judgment in many cases.
posted by barc0001 at 9:31 PM on December 8, 2007 [1 favorite]


Jayder- Technically it's not news if you're setting it up and paying for it to happen.
posted by TheGoldenOne at 9:34 PM on December 8, 2007 [2 favorites]


so, given the reliable, objective nature of the current news media, one can assume that everything on this show is accurate?
posted by edgeways at 2:41 AM on December 9, 2007 [1 favorite]


They don't directly answer the specific question of "how can Dateline use a person's image without their consent?" but this Metafilter post and this Esquire article offer lots of info on how the segments are produced. Strangely, the issue of whether NBC has the right to show footage identifying the predators on camera doesn't seem to come up; usually the focus is either on entrapment, or else Dateline's cozy arrangement with local law enforcement and Perverted Justice.
posted by chrominance at 6:52 AM on December 9, 2007


Interesting related story from On The Media:

Release Getters, 07/06/2007
posted by activitystory at 1:55 PM on December 9, 2007


« Older Does anybody know where I can purchase posters /...   |   How do I back up my iPhoto library to my .mac... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.