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Planned ban of underwater cameras in Sipadan


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#21 ajay

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 06:28 AM

Personally, I don't want to think of the relationship of greenhouse emissions with diving: every one of my favorite dive destinations requires major amount of flying and motor-boating to reach (and often using local airlines that fly the less fuel efficient planes). :(

 

Ajay.



#22 Drew

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 08:27 AM

... this News is that currently officially the ban is Not going ahead according to the Authorities. If there are changes Im sure we will be made aware. My thoughts on the original article is that its irresponsible and it should not have been written unless the News was made official and a date released.

 

I've sent a query to Sabah Parks for confirmation.


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#23 gee13

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 05:59 AM

Drew let us know what you get as a reply because there is nothing presently listed on the Sabah Parks site as to any photog ban on Sipadan. And there have been other people who have contacted Sabah Parks and the information received have been negative to such a ban at this point.

 

Travis Ball in the article writes "The government authority in charge of Sipadan has already declared that an underwater camera ban will go into effect, but will not give an implementation date."

 

Incidentally there is no reference to this effect on the Sabah Parks site.


Edited by gee13, 01 April 2013 - 06:03 AM.


#24 Drew

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 09:43 AM

Well, seeing how the Sulu "gentle" insurgents even got as far as Semporna, I think underwater cameras are pretty low on the list of things to worry about in Sabah for the Malaysian government! :)


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#25 gee13

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 11:01 AM

Exactly, the lahad datu 'invasion' must have seen a recent drop in tourist numbers, local and international. Coupled with a camera ban 'rumour' it wouldnt take much to slash the numbers even more.

#26 tdpriest

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 03:23 AM

Maybe they should make a minimum certification level of rescue diver+peak performance buoyancy and +100 logged dives, now that would make sense.

 

Not everyone is PADI...

 

... other Wetpixies can speak to my own bouyancy control, but I've never done "peak performance bouyancy", just my BSAC and IANTD training.

 

There are times when I think that it took me 1000 dives, rather than 100, to get it right!



#27 MortenHansen

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 12:15 PM

Not everyone is PADI...

 

... other Wetpixies can speak to my own bouyancy control, but I've never done "peak performance bouyancy", just my BSAC and IANTD training.

 

There are times when I think that it took me 1000 dives, rather than 100, to get it right!

 

Funny enough, neither am I anymore, I'm now only CMAS and SSI, but since most people are PADI I thought this would be the best type of cert to suggest. 

 

I also never did a peak performance buoyancy course, but I conducted loads of them, Perfect buoyancy they are called with SSI. 

I think that for beginners (<100dives) the courses help tremendously.

 

From my personal experience its quite often the divers that never take their time to learn things right from the start (Basic course and then no training after that) that take a long time to get a grasp on things, i've seen plenty of divers with thousands of dives who dive a lot worse than most of my newly certified students, but thats an entirely different discussion.

 

Oh yes, and If its not that the divers didn't take their time to learn it right from the beginning, then its their instructor who didn't. 

 

Now that you mention that you're BSAC, I believe you have an equivalent course available: http://www.bsac.com/...d Trim Workshop

 

-Morten



#28 gee13

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 11:52 PM

Im going to throw a spanner in the works here to consider that none of these courses deal with training a student to have good bouyancy whilst having to take certain types of photos uw let alone handling a rig from a compact to fully blown DSlR setup?

#29 ErolE

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 12:16 AM

There are two seperate things at work here. Lack of bouyancy control and mindset.

 

With lack of bouyancy control unfortunatly experience is not good yard stick for competancy. You can spend a life time doing something badly and still be bad. In this sense I have seen divers with 1000s of dives that have no bouyancy control and likewise divers with <50 with great control.

 

This is an indictment on training levels, agencys and instructors more than indivdual divers.

 

A far better yard stick is a pratical one. Can you maintain trim and bouyancy to +/-1m whilst taking a photo? If not you have no place near the substrate with a camera and should have to do mandatory additional trainning. This would put the pressure on trainning agency to implement more rigourous trainning standards.

 

The mindset thing is all together more difficult. Certain photographers feel that the goal of getting a good photo trumps everything and thus are happy to break coral, move subject, lie on fragile substrate. We have all seen this time and depressing time again. Again certain pros seem to be the worst with video showing them lying accross coral which in my mind is a disgrace. Whilst we all have an impact, not trying to mitigate those is unethical.

 

The most depressing part of this arguement is that good bouyancy control really is not that hard to learn. A couple of days with a good instructor and you ll come away with excellent bouyancy, trim and propulsion. Given the amount we spend on travel and gear, not to mention the benefits to safety and actually getting in position to get good shots, this really is a tiny investment.

 

Erol


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#30 MortenHansen

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 03:50 AM

ErolE, on 04 Apr 2013 - 15:09, said:
The most depressing part of this arguement is that good bouyancy control really is not that hard to learn. A couple of days with a good instructor and you ll come away with excellent bouyancy, trim and propulsion. Given the amount we spend on travel and gear, not to mention the benefits to safety and actually getting in position to get good shots, this really is a tiny investment.

Amen! :)

Say you go on a diving holidays, you'd do maybe 20 dives. If your buoyancy control is bad, you'll only be doing short dives, say 45 min.

Normally there is a max. dive-time of 1 hour, everyone with decent buoyancy control can make that!

So that means that over the course of 1 holiday, they loose 5 hours underwater. If that can be avoided by doing two training dives with an instructor at the beginning of the holidays, they will loose 2 hours of fun-diving but in the end they will have more time for fun-diving on that trip, and all trips to come.

These courses are always getting a lot of badmouthing as just a reason to earn more money and so on and so forth, but in my opinion its one of the best courses anyone can do. That is if you didn't already spend hundreds of dives learning it by yourself, like I unfortunately did when I started out.

-Morten

Edited by MortenHansen, 04 April 2013 - 04:11 AM.


#31 newmanl

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 01:39 PM

The part I don't get is why good buoyancy skills are not a requirement to pass a course that certifies you to enter a liquid environment. IMHO, the peak performance buoyancy course is a money grab - regardless of agency, as I believe good buoyancy skills are mandatory for the sport/activity. Double the length (duration), and cost, of the open water course and save the impact of "<100 dives" on the environment.

 

Lee



#32 MortenHansen

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 11:33 PM

Well, thats the thing, buoyancy is actually a requirement to pass a basic course. As far as I remember (and this is the way I teach) you must be able to master the following skills:

Hover (without any movement for a minimum of 30 sec)

Fin-pivot

Regulating buoyancy while diving (wetsuit compression and gas weight-loss)

 

Unfortunately a lot of instructors don't put any effort into these skills. 

You'd be surprised how high a ratio of the newly certified cold-water divers cannot control their buoyancy even though they have just done a basic-course over a full winter season. That means that the duration of the course is not whats important, rather the quality control of the instructors them selves. I know a lot of people who never mastered or even attempted the hover/fin pivot skills on their beginners course.  

 

Send quality control questionnaires out to all certified students and kick out any instructor who does not follow the training standards, easy.

 

-Morten

 

Oh, yearh, this thread totally took a new path, any news on the camera-ban? :D 


Edited by MortenHansen, 04 April 2013 - 11:34 PM.


#33 pdemaagt

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 11:30 PM

Does anybody know which NGO has conducted the research that led to the conclusion that UW photographers are a problem? Where can I get a copy to read it?



#34 MortenHansen

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 04:42 AM

Just sent off an e-mail to Sabah Parks asking for some clarity on the matter, hopefully we can get a reply. 

 

Drew, any luck? 

 

-Morten



#35 Drew

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 03:13 PM

The reply from Sabah Parks isn't forthcoming. However, my insider information has told me that the proposed ban, IF instituted, is going to be in place by Jan 01 2014.  This is part of a plan to increase the number of divers on SIpadan to 240 a day, as the big resorts in Mabul are being built.  Details of the ban are yet to be ratified.
Reefcheck was the NGO whose studies on diver per reef ratio were used,  There was no full research done on Sipadan as of yet, so I'm told.

So to recap,  THERE IS NO OFFICIAL WORD on the ban of cameras in Sipadan. However, the ban seems to be in supported by many operators.


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#36 DamonA

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 08:06 PM

While I abhor anyone trashing the environment just as much as I abhorred tourists chipping away bricks from the 1000-year-old White Tower of the Tower of London as they did in the '50s, the fact of the matter is that these things are much more complex than a simple solution would suggest. For example, we in the West have fuelled the shark-finning industry by buying cheap goods from those countries that want the end-product, enriching them and pushing up the price, thereby making shark fins so much more valuable. We are ALL to blame. Modern industrial society in which we live and benefit brings with it many negatives.

I like what you're saying here John!

 

 

Along while ago, I came to the conclusion that the only real tangible power I have in our "democracy" was in my comsumptional behaviour- who received the money I spend (big corp or little family operator- more likely to care- personally).

 

If you give wealth to bad people/non people and enable them to get rich, nothing good can come from it, it only increases problems, both environmentally, culturally and socially.

 

 So Idea's like linking PADI/etc tickets to regulations, just opens the corruption possibilities and damages the sport's integrity.

 

For me social awareness is priority here, commercialisation of recreational activities isn't making anything better; only more elitist, classist and corrupt.

 

Until the individual accepts that the onis is truly on them, the damage will continue- so making environmental impact education a foremost priority is key to this issue.

 

Commercial operators that train divers in fragile environments should be exposed, beratted and boycotted- dives conducted in such places should have a pre-dive briefing which headlines the issue of damaging the site.

 

I dive firstly because I love the marine environment, "the shot" comes way down in the order of priorities- in that I let karma bring things to me and concentrate on minimalising my impact and making my presence an overall benifit to that environment, via my out of water influences on consumerism and politics.

 

Big Oil and it's political influence is the biggest enemy this planet has, making this industry more transparent and accountable internationally is paramount.


Edited by DamonA, 21 April 2013 - 08:24 PM.


#37 DamonA

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 08:20 PM

 

Funny enough, neither am I anymore, I'm now only CMAS and SSI, but since most people are PADI I thought this would be the best type of cert to suggest. 

 

I also never did a peak performance buoyancy course, but I conducted loads of them, Perfect buoyancy they are called with SSI. 

I think that for beginners (<100dives) the courses help tremendously.

 

From my personal experience its quite often the divers that never take their time to learn things right from the start (Basic course and then no training after that) that take a long time to get a grasp on things, i've seen plenty of divers with thousands of dives who dive a lot worse than most of my newly certified students, but thats an entirely different discussion.

 

Oh yes, and If its not that the divers didn't take their time to learn it right from the beginning, then its their instructor who didn't. 

 

Now that you mention that you're BSAC, I believe you have an equivalent course available: http://www.bsac.com/...d Trim Workshop

 

-Morten

I got your drift with the PADI comment, but don't agree 100% with what your driving at

 

People that scuba dive before seriously getting the hang of skindiving(correct weighting, equalising and duck diving to a depth which requires equalising) are a real problem for this issue- alas the vast majority of europeans........

 

 

I like this guys artical- http://home.gwi.net/..._skin_dive.html


Edited by DamonA, 21 April 2013 - 08:21 PM.


#38 Mark K

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 10:46 PM

Just came back from Sipadan in Jan. Comparing to my trip three years ago, underwater environment around Sipadan is seriously polluted. I cannot think of anything but diving. However, among our 20 dives there, none was made dedicating to photography. If you have a chance to tour around Mabul Island, you will still see local village people and how they blast fish for their food :sick:



#39 MortenHansen

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 02:55 AM

I got your drift with the PADI comment, but don't agree 100% with what your driving at

 

People that scuba dive before seriously getting the hang of skindiving(correct weighting, equalising and duck diving to a depth which requires equalising) are a real problem for this issue- alas the vast majority of europeans........

 

 

I like this guys artical- http://home.gwi.net/..._skin_dive.html

Actually, I think you're right, some snorkeling/skin diving experience is awesome to have when you start diving, its even part of the beginners course to do snorkeling (or swimming, I teach snorkeling). What I don't understand is what you don't agree with, I don't think that I insinuated anywhere above that I thought people who are comfortable in the water make bad divers or that general water skills are not important?  



#40 DamonA

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 05:22 AM

Actually, I think you're right, some snorkeling/skin diving experience is awesome to have when you start diving, its even part of the beginners course to do snorkeling (or swimming, I teach snorkeling). What I don't understand is what you don't agree with, I don't think that I insinuated anywhere above that I thought people who are comfortable in the water make bad divers or that general water skills are not important? 

 


 

You all start diving as a skindiver!!!!

nobody starts diving any other way- it's just some are good divers before they learn to do scuba, some aren't- the cart before the horse !!

 

 

What I am saying is tickets don't necessarily means proficency, It helps if you have no other access to the information- but really, reading up, using forums such as this(asking questions) and regular diving with experienced divers is the best way to gain the skills.

 

I see the proliferation of different type tickets more as being the commercialisation of the sport, and yes PADI has a lot to answer for, putting dollars(profits) before common sense and being fair!!!

 

This so common in a second generation corporation like what PADI is now- the way it teaches to make divers dependent on "the PADI ticket" and the charter/guided dives scene is retarding the abilities of divers-

 

It used to be a blue collar thing, here in australia at lest(spearfishing started it all) and now we see people who aren't physically comfortable at diving making up the statistics of dead scuba divers all with under 25dives. If they had of done skindiving seriously- like at lest a year of regular diving(once a week), they might stil be alive, even if they never bother to try scuba, after discovering the effort required to become good at skindiving(diving)..........

 

 

 Maybe doing some manual labour would be more useful to some people then a speciality ticket.