06-08-2012 09:31 AM
Does anyone know what constitutes a legal audible camera shutter sound?
I need to write a camera app that can be used in ultra-quiet settings like nature capture and classical concert use. But if the legal requirement forbids silent operation, what is the lowest minimum sound level that the shutter sound needs to be? What about the frequency? (Some animals are not sensitive to certain frequencies audible to human beings. And some noise could be filtered out in a classical concert recording.)
Any information is greatly appreciated.
06-08-2012 09:40 AM
06-08-2012 10:26 AM
For concert use: consider allowing the user to select a key for the shutter sound, so it blends in nicely with the music. Or monitor the mic for a loud passage, sound the shutter then, and claim it's shutter sound lag.
06-08-2012 10:33 AM
That's a nice suggestion (recording a real analog camera). I should ask what those National Geography people use.
For concert use, I was just thinking of using a sound at 18kHz or 25Hz (still within audible range but hardly noticeable by anyone older than 25) at MAXIMUM volume. This will NOT be heard in concerts but it will still be, according to measurements, louder than any shutter sound from any current camera on the market.
BTW, I'm surprised that my old Sony digicam has an option for turning off shutter sound.
06-08-2012 10:45 AM
Please anyone finding material on the background to this one, post links here.
Here are a couple:
It also sounds like there was an impending law in South Korea in 2003, which required a "loud clicking sound" but only on phones. Regular digital cameras were exempt.
Actually the text of that silly CPPA Act is short enough, assuming this is really the full thing, that it's worth posting here for laughs. As the article notes, this won't actually stop anyone who wants to take silent pictures, but it will annoy all non-criminal users of these devices... sigh. I don't know the actual status of this particular bill... I sure hope it got shot down.
To require mobile phones containing digital cameras to make a sound when a photograph is taken.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
06-08-2012 11:26 AM
Great news! That means my solution of generating a click at 18kHz (or 19kHz just to be safe) at max volume will fit the bill (pun not intended) since children and adolescents with normal hearing can hear at that frequency (even 10 feet away).
06-08-2012 01:28 PM
I have not delved into the legalese myself, and do not take this as legal advice, however the particular phrase "audible within a reasonable distance" seems to be the key take-away point there.
I would argue that if you are using macro-focus, or are measuring focus-distance, for example, that you may be able to bend this wording to suit your use case.
Again, do not take this as any sort of legal advice. For most use cases, we're hoping to be able to provide an unmutable audio channel over which you can play your custom shutter sounds.
06-08-2012 01:50 PM
06-08-2012 02:10 PM
06-08-2012 02:10 PM
laws are purposely vague so that they can be left up to interpretation by lawyers and judges.
My non-lawyer argument would probably extend that 'reasonable distance' to include the subject of the photograph, given that the intent of the law would be to alert the person being photographed that they are being photographed in some high degree of detail. If the person is 100 feet away, then I would probably consider that to be beyond a 'reasonable distance' as they will only occupy a few pixels in the image anyway. If you happen to have a telephoto lens, then you are probably not using a camera-phone and would not fall under the influence of this law.
Again - this is not any form of legal advice!