Apple want to stop you filming gigs

Fans using their smartphones to record a concert
Fans and artists have spoken out against the use of smartphones to record gigs (Image credit: Getty)

Apple has been granted a patent which could temporarily disable iPhone cameras at gigs.

The technology giant first applied for the patent in 2011 and it was granted this week by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

According to 9to5Mac, the technology has the potential to block an iPhone from recording video or taking a photograph via an infrared signal within a certain range – such as at a concert or in a cinema.

The patent paperwork reads: “An infrared emitter can be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited, and the emitter can generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes commands to disable the recording functions of devices.

“An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device’s recording function based on the command.”

Artists including Slipknot’s Corey Taylor, Kate Bush and Peter Frampton have all spoken out against fans using camera phones at gigs.

Music fans have also expressed anger at other gig-goers filming at shows. In an open letter to “people who record gigs on their phones,” Kate Crudgington of Gigslutz writes: “You do not need to use your smart phone – or whacking great tablet – as a substitute set of visual and auditory organs.

“Little details, like the way a particular singer smiled as she sipped her water water in between songs, and how one guitarist’s hands sped like demons up and down the neck of his guitar as he played my favourite riff….these are the moments of raw, live, musical experience you’re missing out on if you choose to live your life through a lens. It’s not worth the sacrifice.”

Artists including Guns N’ Roses have gone further, asking fans to lock their phones in a sealed pouch during their gigs. The pouches are only removed once the performance is over, the Guardian reports.

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Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.