HONOLULU (AP) - Rock stars Steven Tyler and Mick Fleetwood are at a Hawaii legislative hearing to push a bill aimed at protecting celebrities’ privacy.
The so-called Steven Tyler Act would give celebrities or anyone else the power to sue paparazzi who take photos or video of their private lives in an offensive way.
The former “American Idol” judge recently bought a multi-million dollar home in English’s district on Maui.
National media organizations oppose the bill and say the law would infringe on constitutional rights.
More than two-thirds of the state Senate co-sponsored the measure. Britney Spears and Avril Lavigne are among more than a dozen celebrities who submitted testimony supporting the bill.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.
Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler plans to attend a legislative hearing in Hawaii on Friday on a bill that bears his name and would limit people’s freedom to take photos and video of celebrities.
Hawaii’s Senate Judiciary Committee plans to consider the so-called Steven Tyler Act on Friday morning, the first time lawmakers will discuss the bill publicly.
A publicist for the former “American Idol” judge told The Associated Press on Thursday that Tyler submitted written testimony supporting the proposal, which would allow people to collect damages from someone who photographs them in an offensive way during their personal or family time.
“The paradise of Hawaii is a magnet for celebrities who just want a peaceful vacation,” Tyler said in a statement emailed to The Associated Press. “As a person in the public eye, I know the paparazzi are there and we have to accept that. But when they intrude into our private space, disregard our safety and the safety of others, that crosses a serious line that shouldn’t be ignored.”
More than a dozen celebrities have submitted testimony supporting the bill, including Britney Spears, Avril Lavigne, Neil Diamond, Tommy Lee and the Osborne family. The letters all included the same text.
The stars say paparazzi have made simple activities like cooking with family and sunbathing elusive luxuries and the bill would give them peace of mind.
“Providing a remedy to the often-egregious acts of the paparazzi is a very notable incentive to purchase property or vacation on the islands,” the stars said. “Not only would this help the local economy, but it would also help ensure the safety of the general public, which can be threatened by crowds of cameramen or dangerous high-speed car chases.”
Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie said he supports the intent of the bill but said it may need to be refined. The state attorney general will testify about legal concerns concerning the bill’s language.