The Use of Cameras on Rides at Alton Towers

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Rob, 18th May 2018.

  1. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    So, there has been a lot of recent debate about what is and is not allowed with regards to taking photos and videos on various rides and attractions at Alton Towers. It goes without saying that it is a massive no no on rollercoasters and thrill rides. But what about things like the Rapids, Duel, Postman Pat, the Skyride?

    Alton Towers have apparently released the following statement:

    To ensure the safety of all our guests, we cannot allow filming on our rides and attractions. Our ride operators use CCTV to monitor guests and, where appropriate, are trained to stop some of our rides if they see a guest using their phone or camera.

    This is primarily for the safety of our guests, but also to reduce the risk of damage to our rides if a phone is dropped, and to ensure the availability of our rides is not disrupted for other guests.

    This is an issue that’s very important to us, and we will take any breaches of our ride rules very seriously.

    So you are not allowed to film on any rides or attractions. Although it does not strictly say that you cannot take photos.

    I'm pretty sure most people on here will have taken a photo on a ride at Alton Towers in the past; whether that just be the Skyride or Duel. So what do we think of all of this. And please let's keep to the topic in hand and not what other people/fansites etc. do or do not do.

    :)
     
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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  2. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    It does officially effect the the Skyride as Alton argue that the Skyride doesn't count as a ride or attraction.

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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  3. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    It is listed an an attraction by Alton Towers on their website; along with SeaLife, The Gardens and The Towers.

    :)
     
    Posted 18th May 2018
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  4. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    Yep, but they have said it doesn't count as well both in person at the RBO and on social media.

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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  5. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Which is what makes their policy even more ambiguous! Surely the best policy to have is to ensure that all signage at ride/attraction entrances is up to date, and follow whatever this says for each ride/attraction.

    :)
     
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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  6. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    Photos are allowed in Sharkbait Reef, just without the flash.
     
    Posted 18th May 2018
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  7. IanSR

    IanSR TowersStreet Member

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    I think they should allow a bit of common sense to prevail and someone who has the camera correctly fastened to themselves be allowed to film.

    However, I understand and appreciate the world is full of idiots who think "correctly fastened" would mean held in their hand without any form of tether, and we now live in a society of over-regulation where everything has to be lowest common denominator proof, so a ban it is. I also understand policing this would be beyond Towers present ability since half the staff don't even know the rules presently, so what hope have they to train people in what an adequate tether is.

    Having said that, Towers themselves need to seriously consider doing a Weatherspoons and shut down their social media dept as they are presently doing them more harm than good.
     
    Posted 18th May 2018
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  8. Croftybaby

    Croftybaby TowersStreet Member

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    I've lost count at the number of times I've filmed on rides like The Flume, Rapids and other 'Flats' around Alton Towers. Back in the earlier TTF Days it would be customary to film a Rapids POV, we had great laughs.
    The same goes with parks around the world. It's generally common sense.
    I remember filming my first coaster POV too! It was Black Mamber in Phantasialand in 2007 and I had a "State of the Art" Sony lipstick camera that was strapped to my wrist with the wire running through my coat sleeve to a recorder in my pocket. The video was awful 240p but it felt good knowing I had my own footage to use however I wanted. in my videos.

    This brings me on to modern day tech which is much more advanced and readily available.

    The controversial (see other TPWW thread) signage at Towers does indeed imply that it's at your own risk to ride with or use photography equipment but to be fair these signs were created many years ago before portable photography and video had become such a common place thing. Nowadays everyone has a camera and EVERYONE is trying to get unique films for Instagram/Snap chat likes. People will take risks to secure that unique image.

    There are two risks associated with using photography equipment on rides. The risk to the user and the risk to bystanders should something happen to the equipment. On coasters it's obvious that if the item could fall from a height or at speed and injure somebody. On rides such as the Rapids there is a much reduced risk and the risk (to bystanders) is somewhat limited due to the nature of the ride. Considering the self injury risk, it could be said that if you injure yourself then it's your own fault but as we know this could result in bad press or legal claims down the line if anything happened.

    I'd hate not to be able to film those special moments with friends and family on these rides but I feel the most sensible option for Towers is to ban all photography on rides. But turn a blind eye on rides such Rapids/Duel etc which is pretty much what they do already. As long as they don't encourage the practice I think they will be covered.

    I think enforcing the rule rigorously on these smaller/calmer rides would result in people trying harder to get that elusive shot and could lead to more dangerous acts taking place.

    :) :)
     
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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  9. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    IMO one should assume they can't film on a ride by default. Towers should add "photography allowed" to the entrance on any attractions which allow cameras. Permission to photograph on any other rides should be obtained from park management (not by asking a ride op).

    Towers have handled it really badly IMO, they need to make the rules clear and say exactly which rides photography is allowed.
     
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    Posted 18th May 2018
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  10. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    I would rather it be you have to ask staff for permission otherwise idiots would be saying "but I thought it said allowed" in reference to signage saying it's not.

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  11. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    Yes to be honest the only attractions I think it should be allowed on is the monorail, skyride and maybe Treetop Adventure. Everything else should have "no cameras" on it.

    Maybe I'm being too serious but after over six years as an enthusiast I never expected to be allowed to take photographs on a ride.
     
  12. Croftybaby

    Croftybaby TowersStreet Member

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    I think having a "Photgraphy allowed" would open up a huge risk for the park..

    Another think the park and all park could do is upload official professional ride footage ASAP after rides open. Both general shots and POV shots. Allow people to download it for their own fair use and it would make filming on ride pretty pointless for most people.
     
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  13. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    A 360 pov like they did with oblivion would be awesome

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    Last edited: 18th May 2018
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  14. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    I don't see how allowing photography on Skyride and the Monorail could be risky. All other rides I think photography should be banned.
     
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  15. Croftybaby

    Croftybaby TowersStreet Member

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    @speedy it produces an unnecessary exception to a rule which could confuse guests. Also if anything did happen on these rides then the blame could be placed on towers for allowing the activity.

    Of course you could still use cameras on these rides just not officially. As I stated above, towers would just turn a blind eye.
     
  16. Rojo

    Rojo TowersStreet Member

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    Maybe it's time for Merlin re-evaluate onride photos as well. For example could they attach camera's to the certain attractions trains/boats/cars etc for onboard selfie? Pricing it a lot more competively than the current Picsolve packages would need to happen to eliminate temptation for a quick free selfie though.
     
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  17. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    I believe picsolve actually have technology to do exactly that at scale.

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  18. Benzin

    Benzin TowersStreet Member

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    Is there much point taking pictures on Monorail anymore?
     
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  19. imanautie

    imanautie TowersStreet Member

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    Not really, they have been like many public transportation vehicles for a while now (check creating desire on Twitter for worse bad offenders)

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  20. Danny

    Danny Gugu Rides’ Number 1 Fan

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    In a previous role of mine, my team were made to give two warnings, then carry out a ride stop on a fairly simple dark ride if someone had a camera out or were visibly filming. This caused more faff than it was worth due to knocking the ride out of sync with the screens and would ultimately lead to the ride being spoiled for the rest of the guests on the actions of one or two, so some staff never abided by the policy simply to avoid the fallout.

    Either make a list of rides and attractions that can be filmed on (ie your gentle boat, tracked, flat rides) and those that can't, or blanket rule and enforce across all rides and attractions.
     
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