Friday, May 19, 2017

The Photo Ban Story

If you gaze across newspapers and news media sites in Germany, you will notice this odd trend.  Various public pools (not all of them, and I have doubts that it's even approaching half of them) are now enforcing a no-camera and no-photo rule at the pool.  This is also being used at public lake swimming areas as well.

Being a non-German and having never seen a rule like this....I had to go to an authority on this and ask the question....why.  So, I went to my German wife, a keen pool advocate.

The wife listens to the question intently and then responds...."Refugees".


A trend started up in 2014, at least as she observed it, where a fair number of immigrant guys were showing up at indoor and outdoor pools.  It was mostly immigrant guys....not immigrant women.

Her impression was, that while they might have come for a swim.....this was mostly a visual-thrill type visit and German women felt that they were being observed too much.

I didn't want to say much, but generally...most all guys (even German, American, and even Russian) sit around at the pools or lakes and gaze at women.

She says that the trend went a step up and they started to photograph women at the pools and lakes.  The immigrant guys would photo young women, older women, and even young ladies.  So the women went to the pool 'bosses' and harped on the trend.  Across not just Germany, but several other countries....the trend is starting to take root.

It's an odd rule.  For decades, Germans have photographed action at the public pools.  Some of it was innocent....some probably provocative.  Now?  My guess is that some guys will sneak in their cameras or try to sneak in a smart-phone photo.....get caught....and face the pool suspension (getting kicked out).  Fights might erupt.  Frustrations might be expressed.

It's an odd social problem.  If you had suggested a decade ago that a no-photo would occur....people would have laughed at you.

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