Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Travel&Dining > Travel Safety/Security > Practical Travel Safety and Security Issues
Reload this Page > PV Alert: Can I Take Photos at the Checkpoint and Airport?

PV Alert: Can I Take Photos at the Checkpoint and Airport?

Reply

Old Apr 2, 09, 8:56 am
  #31
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
Is it wrong to publish contact info for public relations staff of public agencies?

Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
It amazes me that the moderators here would allow Phil to post personal contact information for our Customer Support Managers.
If I have posted any personal information, it was a mistake -- please bring it to my attention and I will promptly take action. Best I can tell, the only contact information that these representatives provided in their e-mailed responses to questions posed via TSA's "Got Feedback?" program was their work contact information. It seems that in their jobs as public contacts for TSA, publication of their contact information would be part of the job.

What I published were copies of e-mail sent by these "customer support" staff to a member of the public -- me. I would be surprised to find that anything in those messages was considered private. If I didn't publish the information, anyone who wanted it could get it via FOIA request. You at TSA seem to have a warped sense of what is private information.

Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
These folks have taken the time to help Phil only to have their e-mail addresses and phone numbers posted for public view.
Bob, "helping" me by providing information about airport regulations that should have been published in the first place, then, since it wasn't, should have been gathered by you and included in your blog post about airport regulations, isn't exactly something that these people needed to go out of their ways to provide. We employ them to do this. They're paid to help people.

I cringe every time I use the word customer in relation to TSA, who do not sell goods or services and thus have no customers, but if contact information for TSA's "customer support managers" was not previously published, then my doing so should be considered a service to TSA's "customers".

Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
I'm sure they'll appreciate being spammed and pranked.
Please cut the sarcasm, Bob. It seems you're implying that I should feel responsible for something that might happen with information that is available in a phone book, on federal government "contact us" Web pages, and attached as the signature to every e-mail sent by federal government "customer support" staff in response to public inquiries.

Last edited by pmocek; Apr 2, 09 at 9:21 am Reason: note that this was all sent in e-mail
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 9:11 am
  #32
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: An NPR mind living in a Fox News world
Posts: 11,374
Originally Posted by pmocek View Post
If I have posted any personal information, it was a mistake -- please bring it to my attention and I will promptly take action. Best I can tell, the only contact information that these representatives provided in their e-mailed responses to questions posed via TSA's "Got Feedback?" program was their work contact information. It seems that in their jobs as public contacts for TSA, publication of their contact information would be part of the job.
Phil,

Have no fear -- you published zero information protected by the privacy act. Since the TSA rubs our noses in the Privacy Act, I wouldn't expect any of their employees to know the first thing about it. There are specific categories of personally identifiable information (PII) protected under the privacy act. For Blogdad Bob to assert that official contact information for a government employee consisting of their email address, name, and office phone number is "personal" is beyond laughable.

Anybody who sends an email to anyone else -- government, private sector, or personal -- has no expectation of privacy that their message content and/or their name and email address will wind up all over the internet.

Also, the federal government is migrating to a common IT desktop standard. If you use this format: <first name>.<last name>@<agency>.gov for anyone in the government, you will be correct over 90% of the time just guessing. Many federal agencies, including mine, post their entire personnel directories including names, email, phone, office, room number, on their public web sites.

Blogdad Bob is just blowing smoke and trying to publically intimidate you. But, now that I think about it, that's the TSA's job.

Keep doing what you're doing. But, expect the word to get around and for your responses to suddenly dry up. Also, for everyone, expect to see this information redacted from future email responses from the TSA.
FliesWay2Much is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 9:16 am
  #33
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
TSA's moderators deleting & disallowing comments that comply with their own rules

Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
I had to delete one instance on the TSA Blog where Phil included one of the manager's addresses.
Bob, please explain which rule was violated.

Quoting your blog's "what will get your comment deleted" page:

While we’re on the subject of deleted posts, it’s important to know why we do delete some posts. It all breaks down to the following reasons:
  • Personal attacks (on both officers and passengers)
  • Profanity (and I thought some sailors knew how to curse)
  • Long embedded url strings (only because it messes up the format of the blog)
  • Threats (enough said on this one)
  • Duplicate posts (hitting submit 12 times won't make the comment appear any faster)
  • Off-topic comments (and since we can't tell which topic a comment goes under when we moderate, we mean REALLY off topic, think plagues of locust off topic…)
  • Sensitive information (TSA folks explaining exact procedures that could aid someone wishing to do us harm)

Other than that, all's fair in love and blogging.
Bob, while you're here, could you please comment on the "TSA Blogger Bob refuses comments re: Paul's Nov 2008 project to gather list of rules" thread? Your colleague Paul said almost five months ago that he was working on a comprehensive list of rules that TSA requires people to follow at their checkpoints, and many of us would like a status update.
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 9:30 am
  #34
Suspended
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 4,952
This link was posted at PV in the photography thread:

Link

Note the comments - the second one reflects Phil's concerns about unpublished rules:

....there’s no way for me to acquaint myself with said law
doober is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 11:31 am
  #35
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 860
Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
It amazes me that the moderators here would allow Phil to post personal contact information for our Customer Support Managers. I had to delete one instance on the TSA Blog where Phil included one of the manager's addresses. Not cool.

These folks have taken the time to help Phil only to have their e-mail addresses and phone numbers posted for public view. I'm sure they'll appreciate being spammed and pranked.

Bob
Huh? These folks work in customer service positions at the government. What are you talking about?

Also, could you please verify whether the recording of the TSA goons harassing that guy for carrying cash is an authentic recording?
docmonkey is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 12:10 pm
  #36
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
sbm12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: NYC
Posts: 67,966
Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
It amazes me that the moderators here would allow Phil to post personal contact information for our Customer Support Managers. I had to delete one instance on the TSA Blog where Phil included one of the manager's addresses. Not cool.

These folks have taken the time to help Phil only to have their e-mail addresses and phone numbers posted for public view. I'm sure they'll appreciate being spammed and pranked.

Bob
This is FT's rule on the subject:
With the exception of public figures, do not post names, addresses, phone numbers or e-mails of other FlyerTalk members. This information will be removed by moderators. Respect the privacy of non-management travel service employees by not referring to them by name.
If you feel that the FT ToS is being violated please use the Report Bad Post button (little red triangle) adjacent to the specific post.

Personally, I would redact the information as I do not believe it actually provides additional value to the posts, but that doesn't mean it is a violation of the ToS. I'm not a moderator in this forum and I will judge whether I think these posts are a violation of the ToS unless one of the mods here asks me to.
sbm12 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 12:31 pm
  #37
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
TSA P.R. staff's e-mail sig lines are like letterhead: hardly private information

Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
Personally, I would redact the information as I do not believe it actually provides additional value to the posts, but that doesn't mean it is a violation of the ToS.
Thanks for the input. I've put a lot of thought into this, but multiple heads tend to be better than one.

Consider that the information I published is seemingly distributed by these federal government public relations staff to anyone and everyone who contacts them via TSA's "Got Feedback?" program.
Also consider that this information would likely be valuable to anyone who doubts the authenticity of the messages I published and wishes to contact TSA staff to verify the accuracy of the information, as well as to anyone who would like to inquire about related information.

To take this off the Internet and into meatspace, imagine that you contacted the public relations department for some federal government agency, and that the letter you received in response contained information that you felt would be valuable to others. Were you to photocopy that letter and tack copies on local community bulletin boards, would you feel the need to white out contact information on the letterhead used by the TSA staff when they responded to your inquiry?
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 12:43 pm
  #38
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 684
Originally Posted by TSA Bob View Post
It amazes me that the moderators here would allow Phil to post personal contact information for our Customer Support Managers. I had to delete one instance on the TSA Blog where Phil included one of the manager's addresses. Not cool.

These folks have taken the time to help Phil only to have their e-mail addresses and phone numbers posted for public view. I'm sure they'll appreciate being spammed and pranked.

Bob
Bob, what amazes me is that you think this information cannot be made public. He is not posting personal contact information, such as their home phone number; he is posting their professional contact information. If these people are Customer Support Managers than we should be able to contact them either through the TSA website or directly.

If they are spammed or pranked then you should go after the people doing and not assume that this is automatically going to happen. You can run the TSA website the way you see fit, but you don’t get to apply your standards here.

One of the 5 or 6
magellan315 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 12:44 pm
  #39
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: DFW
Posts: 12,901
Originally Posted by pmocek View Post
Thanks for the input. I've put a lot of thought into this, but multiple heads tend to be better than one.

Consider that the information I published is seemingly distributed by these federal government public relations staff to anyone and everyone who contacts them via TSA's "Got Feedback?" program.

Phil I see no problem with posting the names and other official business contact information that the TSA Customer Support employees freely provided. If it was personal information I would feel differently.

Bob has his knickers in a wad because it is very clear that what he posted on the PV Blog and what is happening out in the real TSA World are two completely separate things.

It is also clear that TSA field personnel have no clue on this topic.

I'm really surprised that we haven't seen an update post over at PV just yet.

You know that internal discussions are ongoing while they try to figure out which alibi they will go with.
Boggie Dog is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 1:02 pm
  #40
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
sbm12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: NYC
Posts: 67,966
Originally Posted by pmocek View Post
To take this off the Internet and into meatspace, imagine that you contacted the public relations department for some federal government agency, and that the letter you received in response contained information that you felt would be valuable to others. Were you to photocopy that letter and tack copies on local community bulletin boards, would you feel the need to white out contact information on the letterhead used by the TSA staff when they responded to your inquiry?
Maybe. There is also a notable difference when it comes to posting info online - particularly email addresses - as there are automated systems that harvest those addresses and use them nefariously. Such a parallel doesn't exist in the offline world. But this is a whole different discussion than the topic at hand.
sbm12 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 2:13 pm
  #41
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
avoiding exposure to spammers' address harvesting by obfuscating addresses

Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
There is also a notable difference when it comes to posting info online - particularly email addresses - as there are automated systems that harvest those addresses and use them nefariously.
I'm well aware of spammers' address harvesting. In this case, it seems that the addresses are so public that they're bound to be picked up elsewhere (such as from the inbox of someone using a Windows machine, most of which are infected with malware, often harvesting addresses), but it was a simple matter to edit each post to obfuscate all the e-mail addresses, so I did.
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 2:16 pm
  #42
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: An NPR mind living in a Fox News world
Posts: 11,374
Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
Maybe. There is also a notable difference when it comes to posting info online - particularly email addresses - as there are automated systems that harvest those addresses and use them nefariously. Such a parallel doesn't exist in the offline world. But this is a whole different discussion than the topic at hand.
Actually, the government has pretty good spam filters. I honestly can't remember the last time a Viagra ad made it through to my inbox. So, I wouldn't feel the least bit bashful about posting the TSA replies verbatim.
FliesWay2Much is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 5:43 pm
  #43
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: PHX
Programs: AA Ex Platinum, Marriott Gold, HH Diamond, SPG Platinum
Posts: 2,337
Originally Posted by magellan315 View Post
Bob, what amazes me is that you think this information cannot be made public. He is not posting personal contact information, such as their home phone number; he is posting their professional contact information. If these people are Customer Support Managers than we should be able to contact them either through the TSA website or directly.

If they are spammed or pranked then you should go after the people doing and not assume that this is automatically going to happen. You can run the TSA website the way you see fit, but you don’t get to apply your standards here.

One of the 5 or 6
What he said

Sorry, Bob, but you are way off base on this. I know accountability is a 4-letter word in the TSA's world, but most of us live by it because both our employers & customers demand it.
txrus is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 5:51 pm
  #44
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
update: TSA re: airport photography policies: Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW)

Comment #19 "TSA re: airport photography policies: Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW)" has been updated with additional information received today. This includes further comments from Chuck Sloan, TSA Customer Service Manager at DFW, as well as information from Leslie Young, Legal Assistant to DFW International Airport Board, who relayed information from the General Counsel for the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Board (DFW rules and regulations speak only to commercial photography, and an explanation of how the commercial nature of photography is judged).
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 09, 6:26 pm
  #45
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 1,438
airport photography policy survey status

Current status:

My "Got Feedback?" submissions were made at approximately 2009-03-31 21:30 -0700.

I have received initial responses, requested specific information from, and now await replies from these people:
  • Denver International (DEN): Robert Kapp
  • Indianapolis International (IND): Rene Harris
  • Ontario International (ONT): April Ellis
  • Orange County John Wayne (SNA): Cheryl Paine
  • Phoenix Sky Harbor International (PHX): Philip Kaiser
  • Pittsburgh International (PIT): Laura A. Snell
  • Port Columbus International (CMH): John Dipaola
  • Portland International (PDX): Tina A. Blake
  • San Diego International (SAN): Leslie Adlam
  • (airport unknown; didn't say): Joy V. Martinez

I have received referrals to specific outside contacts from these people, whom I thank for their assistance:
  • Chicago Midway International (MDW): John Devona
  • Chicago-O'Hare Inational (ORD): Barbara Hornbach
  • Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW): Chuck Sloan
  • LaGuardia (LGA): Guy Lainis
  • Logan International (BOS): Marina Blanciforte
  • Raleigh-Durham International (RDU): Amy Humpherson (EDIT: was erroneously in other list, but provided contact on April 2)
  • Sacramento Metropolitan (SMF): James Robert Smith, Jr.
  • Washington-Dulles International (IAD) and Ronald Reagan National (DCA): Susan Rohde

I have not yet received any response from CA Los Angeles, CA Oakland, CA San Francisco, CA San Jose, FL Ft. Lauderdale, FL Miami, FL Orlando, FL Tampa, GA Atlanta, HI Honolulu, LA New Orleans, MD Baltimore, MI Detroit, MN Minneapolis/St. Paul, MO Kansas City, MO St. Louis, NC Charlotte, NJ Newark, NM Albuquerque, NV Las Vegas, NY New York (John F. Kennedy), OH Cincinnati, PA Philadelphia, PR San Juan, TN Memphis, TN Nashville, TX Dallas (Love Field), TX Houston (Intercontinental), TX Houston (William P. Hobby), TX San Antonio, UT Salt Lake City, or WA Seattle-Tacoma.

Last edited by pmocek; Apr 3, 09 at 12:18 pm Reason: correction: Humpherson at RDU provided contact 4/2
pmocek is offline  
Reply With Quote
 


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 5:19 pm.

Home - News - Forum - Hotel Reviews - Glossary - Contact Us - Airport Code Lookup - Terms of Use - Privacy Policy - Cookie Policy - Advertise on FlyerTalk - Archive - Top

This site is owned, operated, and maintained by Flyertalk.com. Copyright © 2017 FlyerTalk.com. All rights reserved. Designated trademarks are the property of their respective owners.