A Camera Silencers Mandate

Cameras are noisy.

Which ones will Ito approve?

All must use sound blimps.


By September 1, 1994, Simpson judge Lance Ito had decided that the pool cameras in his courtroom were too noisy and needed to be silenced with rather pricey equipment called hard blimps or he wouldn’t let them in. The photographers weren’t happy, even those with news organizations that had hard blimps. Most professional news photographers had the much less expensive soft blimp, which is a sort of leather sack the camera can be put in. Soft blimps muffle, but don’t do as well at deadening the sound of the camera shutter as hard blimps.  It’s harder to operate cameras that are encased in ridged hard-sided hard blimps, and the opening for lenses isn’t large enough for their longest lenses.  But hard blimps became the ticket for camera access to Simpson courtroom proceedings.

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