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SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau

House approves bill penalizing personal intrusion for commercial purposes
Writer: Jazmin S. Camero, Media Relations Service-PRIB
21 August 2014 08:31:50 AM

The House of Representatives has approved on second reading a measure that will penalize photographers and videographers who intrude on people’s privacy for profit or commercial purposes.

The House Committee on Public Information, chaired by Rep. Jorge T. Almonte (1st District, Misamis Occidental), sponsored and endorsed for plenary approval House Bill 4807, which substituted House Bill 3548 authored by Reps. Rufus B. Rodriguez (2nd District, Cagayan de Oro City) and Maximo B. Rodriguez, Jr. (Party List, ABAMIN).

"The measure shall curb acts of trespassing and other intrusions on personal privacy committed by any person in order to capture visual or sound impressions of an individual with intent to gain or profit," Almonte said.

Rodriguez said the privacy of individuals and their families has been violated by people who trespass through intrusive modern visual or auditory enhancement devices, such as powerful telephoto lenses and hyperbolic microphones.

"Such harassment and trespassing threaten public and private persons and their families whom personal circumstances beyond their control create media interest," Rodriguez said.

House Bill 4807, also known as the Protection Against Personal Intrusion Act, shall promote and protect the personal privacy of every person by preventing intrusion for commercial purposes, and enjoining everyone to respect the dignity, personality, privacy and peace of mind of every person.

Under the measure, it is unlawful to capture, or to trespass on private property in order to capture, any type of visual image, sound recording, or other physical impression of any individual, personal or family activity for commercial purposes and even if no physical trespass has occurred.

The measure also allows the person whose visual image or auditory impression has been captured to file a civil action or proceeding to obtain any appropriate relief including compensatory damages, punitive damages, and injunctive of declaratory relief.

Co-authors of the measure are Reps. Gwendolyn F. Garcia (3rd District, Cebu), Linabelle Ruth R. Villarica (4th District, Bulacan), Jose L. Atienza, Jr. (Party List, BUHAY), and Leopoldo N. Bataoil (2nd District, Pangasinan).