Steven Tyler to Testify at Hawaii Anti-Paparazzi Bill Hearing

The Wrap

Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler will testify at a legislative hearing in Hawaii on Friday, lending his support to a bill bearing his name that would allow celebrities to collect damages from people who take offensive photos of them in private, the Associated Press reported.

It will be the first time Hawaii's lawmakers discuss the so-called Steven Tyler Act, introduced by state Sen. Kalani English of Maui, where Tyler owns a mansion.

While English hopes the bill could attract more celebrities to the islands -- providing an economic boost to the state -- opponents say it limits First Amendment rights.

The American Civil Liberties Union has said lawmakers should support stronger enforcement of existing stalking laws rather than pass the new legislation. The proposal would open up photographers, videographers and distributors to civil suits.

It's unclear whether the bill would make public places, such as beaches, exempt, but it would punish those who take photos from boats.

Tyler has said paparazzi hide in the bushes outside his home to take candid photos of him inside the house.

But in an editorial headlined "Anti-paparazzi bill goes too far," the Honolulu Star Advertiser -- Hawaii's leading newspaper -- raised concerns that the bill could affect both journalists and ordinary people who accidentally snap a photo of a celebrity.

"It could also make lawbreakers out of anyone taking photographs in public places, be it an ordinary photojournalist or someone with a camera phone," the editorial said.

View Comments