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Videotaping with cell phone in a public park in maryland during a game

Columbia, MD |

I umpire leagur games. During one game a fight broke out and verbally abusive words were used. I took out my cell phone to document these. The abusive player knew that I may be videotaping him but did not stop from cursing etc. This incident took place in a public location with zero expectation of privacy and things were not being said in a private conversation. Is it ok for me to record this?

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Attorney answers 3


Yes, it's okay to record that. - This is not legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. This is for education and informational purposes only. It is always recommended that you contact an attorney with any concerns as each individual case is unique.


Yes. You were being prudent and documenting an incident which could have escalated into something more.

DISCLAIMER: Brandy A. Peeples is licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland. This answer is being provided for informational purposes only and the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. For legal advice relating to your specific situation, I strongly urge you to consult with an attorney in your area. NO COMMUNICATIONS WITH ME ARE TO BE CONSTRUED AS ARISING FROM AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP AND NO ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP WILL BE ESTABLISHED WITH ME UNLESS I HAVE EXPRESSLY AGREED TO UNDERTAKE YOUR REPRESENTATION, WHICH INCLUDES THE EXECUTION OF A WRITTEN AGREEMENT OF RETAINER.


Yes, this was fine.

I focus my practice on (video) gaming industry, casino gambling, and complex internet law issues, electronic free speech, entertainment law, copyright and trademark law, and computer fraud. I primarily represent game developers and founders of emergent internet technologies. The author is a Maryland attorney; however no answer given on Avvo is intended as legal advice or intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

Daniel Gary Rosenthal

Daniel Gary Rosenthal


However, note that in general Maryland is a two-party consent state, and in this case it was acceptable due to the lack of expectation of privacy. In a different factual situation, the answer could be different -- you do not have free license to record everything willy-nilly in Maryland under the Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Act. You also cannot use the recorded content for blackmailing or extortion purposes. Not suggesting that you are or that you will, but I'm just pointing out that there are limitations on what you can do.

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