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  1. #1
    twc
    twc is offline Junior Member
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    Can my Landlord point a video camera into my front door?

    OREGON. My wife and I live in Clackamas County, Oregon. We have weekly card games where we invite friends over to play cards. My landlord approved of this until recently. She now claims she didnt realize it was a regular weekly event.

    We rent a guest house behind her home. She now points a video camera from behind the window screen of her bedroom window 15 feet away directly into our front door. Our front door is in her back yard.

    When the front door happens to be open, this peers into our bathroom and dressing room area, as well as the living room. Once when I returned from the store my wife had just come out of the bathroom nude to get dressed and was recorded without her consent (obviously). To make matters worse, the landlord has never provided the bathroom door installation as promised over a month ago, so there is no door at all to provide privacy.

    We strongly feel that our landlord's action is quite outrageous and extrememly invasive of our personal privacy and deeply disturbs us (and our friends who visit).

    Besides asking her to stop (which we've done to no avail), what are our options? We moved here as a temporary situation due to zero savings, and cannot afford to easily move just yet.

    Please advise, do we have any options, or is she (our landlord) within her rights, as she claims, to continue videotaping us in this manner, into our private rental unit through the front door, at all hours of the day and night?

    Thanks, in advance, for any and all help!

    Jeff
  2. #2
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    I suspect that there is nothing illegal about it. If she has the camera in a place where she has a lawful right to stand, what possible violation of the law could there be?

    You can ask her about it if you want. And if there IS such a great view into the bathroom from the front door, maybe you need to close the bathroom door or something.

    In any case, there is almost certainly nothing unlawful about her actions.

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  3. #3
    bigbarkingdog is offline Junior Member
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    You should host a swinger party and leave the front door wide open.
  4. #4
    ENASNI is offline Senior Member
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    um

    Um Bed, bath and beyond.. Home Depot.. Macys... Friggin Target


    Curtains, Blinds.. Tarps... Shoot... HELLO?
  5. #5
    twc
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    We were hoping for more helpful replies.

    We have, in fact, put up a curtain to cover the bathroom door (though, it really should have been the landlord's responsibilty to install the door long ago, as promised).

    I feel I should NOT have to worry about WHEN I come home and open the front door, however. Or, whether or not my spouse is dressed inside the privacy of our rental. A camera should not be 15 feet away from anyone's front door peering inward 24/7 every time you open it.

    I feel one should be able to have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their own place - and not have to worry about whether opening the (only) door might allow someone to invade someone's privacy in this manner.

    The whole thing seems a little rediculous.

    Since her video camera points directly toward our bathroom through the living room/dressing area from outside, I presume it will be perfectly fine for us to reciprocate in kind, and then point ours toward her bedroom windows (from which she is spying and videotaping us), right? Seems fair enough, yes? I presume, also, that since she insists she is doing nothing wrong, us reciprocating would not only be perfectly legal BUT also give her no room to complain about the same. ....I think we're on to something here.... I knew I would learn SOMETHING from this posting!

    The replies to the original posting we're, to say the least, a dissappointment. Sigh.....
    Last edited by twc; 06-30-2005 at 12:22 AM.
  6. #6
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by twc
    We were hoping for more helpful replies.
    No, you were hoping for replies that told you what she was doing was somehow against the law. This is not the case.


    I feel I should NOT have to worry about WHEN I come home and open the front door, however. Or, whether or not my spouse is dressed inside the privacy of our rental. A camera should not be 15 feet away from anyone's front door peering inward 24/7 every time you open it.
    What you "feel" is not a concern of the law. As it is, this is currently an issue between you and the landlord. If you have a problem with her camera, you need to talk with her about it.

    The alternative is to pay a lot of money to consult an attorney who may have some legal angle for you to TRY and force the issue. But, there is really no way you can likely compel her to move the camera.

    As long as the camera is in a place where she has a right to stand anyway, then there is likely nothing unlawful about it.


    I feel one should be able to have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their own place - and not have to worry about whether opening the (only) door might allow someone to invade someone's privacy in this manner.
    I might agree with you. However, this is a civil matter and not one for the criminal courts, and not likely one that would go anywhere in a civil court either.


    Since her video camera points directly toward our bathroom through the living room/dressing area from outside, I presume it will be perfectly fine for us to reciprocate in kind, and then point ours toward her bedroom windows (from which she is spying and videotaping us), right?
    Sure. Why not? Set a recorder up inside your house and tape her right back.


    The replies to the original posting we're, to say the least, a dissappointment. Sigh.....
    Sorry. We'll get right out there and change the law to accomodate you ..

    What has she said when you have talked with her about this matter?

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  7. #7
    outonbail is offline Senior Member
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    Rather than going through all the trouble and expense of purchasing a video camera, hang a mirror on your front door. This way she will be watching herself most of the time.

    You know, fighting over petty things with your landlord is a no win situation. You need to look for another residence to move into. Stop losing all your money in poker games and you'll be able to afford this.

    After all, to continue being this lady's tenant and continue with this silly game of you tape me so I tape you, is only postponing the inevitable. Move on and forget about her**************


    As a side note, if you really like drama and want to fuel the fued,,,, one of those cheap lazer lights that are sold at most convenience stores, and novelty shops, the ones that shoot a lazer light seen as a red dot on the surfaces it hits for considerable distances. When pointed directly into the lense of a camera they will blind the camera and prolonged viewing of the lazer will lead to the destruction of the camera's optical components, as will most bright light sources pointed directly into the lense. Maybe you need a real bright porch light?

    You should also realize that you would be held legally responsible for any intentional destruction of another's property.....
  8. #8
    jamied66 is offline Member
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    No law is being broken. Just common courtesey and good taste.

    So have a little fun and run with it. Walk around "sans ropa". Dress yourself in Christmas lights or something.

    In short, let her know how ridiculous it is. It worked for the woman on Bewitched in the 60's with Gladys Kravitz.
  9. #9
    twc
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    Yes, we are looking for another place, and have been for a couple of weeks now.

    Interestingly, the landlord protested loudly and threatened to lock us out, keep our deposit, etc...., after we put up OUR video camera. Then she called the police, who then came by and knocked on our door, and, politely, but in NO UNCERTAIN TERMS, informed us that we were violating HER privacy by pointing the camera at her bedroom windows (the same windows from which she videotapes us everytime we open and close the front door). She, however, according to these Oregon officer morons, has the right to point her camera into our rental unit. What a load of BS!!

    To make matters worse, we discovered someone rifled thru all of our personal things in the apt. while we were gone one day. My landlord is up all night long, and works 2 jobs, NEVER has any money. She's acting pretty damn weird if you ask us. We noticed she went thru all our medicine stuff/prescriptions, I guess looking for somehting of interest to her. At this point, it seems to us she is probably on speed/crack/whatever (how else can she stay up all night on top of working two jobs, and still find time to spy on us).

    We feel what the police told us is total and complete BS, and, after giving it a great deal of thought, have decided to put OUR camera back up and let them take it BY FORCE.

    I guess we shall see we'll see WHAT THE LAW REALLY IS NOW!

    My wife will record on video all further interactions with the landlord and the police (since I do not believe either have been reasonable or trustworthy with us).

    I think the best way to deal with this is to recording everything, make detailed notes and recordings, and continue our search for another place to live.

    I hope no one else has to go thru anything like this but I'm sure, in this drug infested state (Oregon), many others probably have. I've watched the news since I've lived here, and see that this appears to be the crack and meth capitol of the world. With the local yocals as dumb as rocks, also, we plan to get the hell out of dodge asap. Good luck, and God help you, to everyone who lives here!!
    Last edited by twc; 07-01-2005 at 02:06 PM.
  10. #10
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    It would seem that by pointing it at her bedroom, you might have run afoul of THIS section:
    163.700 Invasion of personal privacy. (1) Except as provided in ORS 163.702, a person commits the crime of invasion of personal privacy if:

    (a)(A) The person knowingly makes or records a photograph, motion picture, videotape or other visual recording of another person in a state of nudity without the consent of the person being recorded; and

    (B) At the time the visual recording is made or recorded the person being recorded is in a place and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy; or

    (b)(A) For the purpose of arousing or gratifying the sexual desire of the person, the person is in a location to observe another person in a state of nudity without the consent of the other person; and

    (B) The other person is in a place and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy.

    (2) As used in this section:

    (a) “Makes or records a photograph, motion picture, videotape or other visual recording” includes, but is not limited to, making or recording or employing, authorizing, permitting, compelling or inducing another person to make or record a photograph, motion picture, videotape or other visual recording.

    (b) “Nudity” means uncovered, or less than opaquely covered, post-pubescent human genitals, pubic areas or a post-pubescent human female breast below a point immediately above the top of the areola. “Nudity” includes a partial state of nudity.

    (c) “Places and circumstances where the person has a reasonable expectation of personal privacy” includes, but is not limited to, a bathroom, dressing room, locker room that includes an enclosed area for dressing or showering, tanning booth and any area where a person undresses in an enclosed space that is not open to public view.

    (d) “Public view” means that an area can be readily seen and that a person within the area can be distinguished by normal unaided vision when viewed from a public place as defined in ORS 161.015.

    (3) Invasion of personal privacy is a Class A misdemeanor. [1997 c.697 §1; 2001 c.330 §1]


    How a court might interpret some of this is questionable. But you could end up in jail or court as a defendant.

    I wouldn't think the potential legal costs would be worthwhile ... how about just moving?

    - Carl
    Last edited by CdwJava; 07-01-2005 at 02:25 PM.
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  11. #11
    twc
    twc is offline Junior Member
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    Carl - Then, surely, her recording us is illegal as well. After all, her camera points directly into our bathroom (for which she has failed to even provide a door) every time our front door is opened.

    I think if the police insist that we remove our camera - she must also remove hers. Which, of course, is our point. We'll be happy to remove ours if she also removes hers - this is what instigated this whole thing in the first place.

    We agree about moving, and are making plans as fast as we can. But we must insist that the law apply equally to all parties concerned.

    I think the police are missing the obvious facts. And, I think they will find themselves in trouble on this one.
  12. #12
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by twc
    Carl - Then, surely, her recording us is illegal as well. After all, her camera points directly into our bathroom (for which she has failed to even provide a door) every time our front door is opened.

    I think if the police insist that we remove our camera - she must also remove hers. Which, of course, is our point. We'll be happy to remove ours if she also removes hers - this is what instigated this whole thing in the first place.

    We agree about moving, and are making plans as fast as we can. But we must insist that the law apply equally to all parties concerned.

    I think the police are missing the obvious facts. And, I think they will find themselves in trouble on this one.
    The fact that your lalndlady MAY be violating the law doesn't mean that you can. And all because they fail to take action against her is not a defense if you are charged with the crime.

    You can "insist" all you want, but it may not result in a satisfactory result.

    It might be that your aiming the camera at her bedroom is violating an area in which there is an expectation of privacy ... her aiming of her camera at your front door (an area open to anyone and not one where you would expect to find people undressing as per the section) may be okay.

    You can dig in your heels if you want, but is it worth $5k to $10k in attorneys fees just to prove your point?


    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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