ASA photography guidance

RWB Otters follows the guidance set out in Wavepower 2016-19.

This guidance applies to all images and videos taken on any type of camera or recording device (including mobile phones) and applies to all training sessions, activities and events run by the club.

It should be acknowledged that although the majority of images taken are appropriate and in good faith, images can be misused and children can be put at risk if common sense procedures are not observed.

Best practice

  • The publishing of a photograph of a member under 18, either on a notice board or in a published article or video recording (including video streaming) of a competition (‘Publication’) should only be done with parental consent and in line with ASA guidelines.
  • A parent or guardian has a right to refuse to have their child photographed. The exercise of this right of refusal should not be used as grounds for refusing entry into a competition. Therefore, any photo that may go to press or on a notice board, be it through a member of the organisation or an official photographer, should receive parental consent before being published or displayed, preferably in writing.
  • In the case of any event or competition where the host organisation has an official photographer, all parents /guardians of members attending should be made aware of this in the event details. If photos are to be published anywhere, each individual parent should be given the opportunity to withhold their consent. Their right to do so should be specifically drawn to their attention.
  • Leisure centres and events hosted by other organisations may have their own policies in place in relation to the use of photography, which will need to be adhered to by parents/guardians.
  • All photographs for publication must observe generally accepted standards of decency, particularly:
    – Action shots should be a celebration of the sporting activity and not a sexualised image in a sporting context.
    – Action shots should not be taken or retained where the photograph reveals a torn or displaced swimming costume.
    – Poolside shots of children should be above the waist only in a swimming costume, though full length tracksuit shots are approved.
    – Photographs should not be taken from behind the starting blocks or that show young participants climbing out of the pool.
  • Published photographs may identify the individual by name and organisation but should not state the member’s place of residence or school attended. The ASA does not wish to stop parents photographing their child if they wish, but all organisations must ensure they do all they can to safeguard each child’s wellbeing.
  • If a swimmer wishes to upload any image onto social media of their having taken part in training sessions or official swimming events, they should ensure the image does not include any other swimmer under 18, unless they first seek the advice and consent of their own parents and the consent of the other young person(s) and their parents.


The official photographer 

When taking any image, they should be asked to:

  • Focus on the activity rather than the individual child.
  • Include groups of children rather than individuals, if possible.
  • Ensure all those featured are appropriately dressed.
  • Represent the broad range of youngsters participating in swimming – boys and girls, children with disabilities, members of minority ethnic communities, etc.
  • Organisations should screen applicants for their suitability (just as they would check any other member of staff or volunteer working with children) and then provide training and information on the organisation’s child safeguarding policies and procedures.
  • The official photographer (whether a professional photographer or a member of staff) should receive clear instructions, preferably in writing, from the organisation at an early stage.
  • The organisation should provide them with a copy of this guidance and a clear brief about what is appropriate in terms of content.
  • Images should not be allowed to be taken outside the activity being covered.
  • Images should be stored securely by the official photographer and deleted after they have served their purpose.


Guidance on filming children during training sessions

The filming of children during training sessions must be justified by the club e.g. to assist in stroke development.

Written consent is required from the parents of each child who should then be invited to attend the filming and to subsequently view the video.

The individual responsible for filming should ensure the content of the footage is appropriate and filming should cease and/or the footage destroyed should any concerns be raised or if consent is withdrawn.

Once the footage has served its purpose, it should be destroyed, unless the need to keep it can be justified.


Mobile phones

The ASA does not support the banning of phones, as children need them to keep in touch with parents/guardians, particularly in emergencies, however, phones should emit a ‘noticeable sound’ if the camera facility is used.

Any photographs taken on a mobile phone fall within these guidelines and if phones are taken into changing rooms, the facility to take photos or videos must not be used.

This policy should be read in conjunction with the Changing Room Policy and relevant sections of Wavepower covering guidance on child abuse images, the use of electronic information and social networking.