The Citizen Journalist’s Legal Guide to the Inauguration

There is no doubt the four-days of events for this Presidential Inauguration will be a shit sandwich. Well, let me rephrase. Pack light and don’t drink liquids. With 2 million people (plus locals) – do you really expect a place to pee?

All kidding aside, this post is for you, for us: citizen journalists. Come hell or high water we are determined to bring gear and capture the moments. Watching Obama on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial – pinched between hundreds of thousands of people en masse before him. We will witness a political awakening in our neighborhood, on our steps, in our country. And the world will be watching.

Thanks to the Citizen Media Law Project and the ruthless research of the one Harvard Law Student, we have the Guide to Documenting the 2009 Presidential Inauguration. This legal primer has been put together with information from (1) the Secret Service, (2) DC Metro Police, (3) U.S. Capitol Police and (4) National Parks Service.

Here are some highlights from the report:

You should have no problem if you bring small, handheld equipment and carry it in a small bag (but not a backpack). 

Tripods, backpacks and large bags (exceeding 8″x6″x4″), including camera bags, are not permitted.  A non-exhaustive list of additional prohibited items is available at the website of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and the Secret Service Presidential Inaugural webpage.

Now, where does it say anything about a flask? Get the full report here!

Happy documenting!





2 thoughts on “The Citizen Journalist’s Legal Guide to the Inauguration

  1. Barb

    I am so excited that you are going to be experiencing this, Erica. Enjoy every minute, and do try to find a place for that flask!


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