Photo finish

IT has been so unusual for common sense to over-rule petty officialdom that such rare occurrences, when they do happen, are genuine causes of celebration.

This is prompted by the Information Commissioner's Office ruling, with belated justification, that the Data Prevention Act should not forbid parents and friends taking photographs at school plays and nativity concerts this Christmas.

It is, nevertheless, ludicrous that such a statement is required to nullify the "bah humbug" brigade of party poopers who have allowed such a "myth" to be applied at face value.

School performances are not normally Hollywood affairs where copyright issues, and such like, determine whether a prima donna performer can be photographed or not. They are normally cherished occasions that normally provide a lifetime of memories for proud parents and relatives – and it is only right that they have photographs of these treasured events.

Having taken such a stance, the Commissioner's challenge is now to ensure that this welcome ruling is applied with some much needed, and long overdue, common sense.