Chicago Paper laying off photography department - News Photographers Redundant?


kei1309

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Apr 12, 2010
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#2
perhaps they're only laying off the local news photographers who take pictures of subjects that can be easily iPhotographed.

but if it's the entire photography department... everyone will be laughing when they can't get a good shot :bsmilie:
 

An drew

Senior Member
May 27, 2005
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#4
perhaps they're only laying off the local news photographers who take pictures of subjects that can be easily iPhotographed.

but if it's the entire photography department... everyone will be laughing when they can't get a good shot :bsmilie:
Looks like all got retrenched.

the Chicago Sun-Times laid off its entire 28-person photography staff — including Pulitzer prize winner John White — yesterday.
Portrait of Black Chicago

 

An drew

Senior Member
May 27, 2005
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#5
They getting "citizen journalists" to do the jobs lah.

Free Photos from Free Labour.
I also notice that the quality of photos in our local papers is no longer like in the past.



 

ricohflex

Senior Member
Feb 24, 2005
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#8
This is due to the confluence of several developments:

• improvement in camera technology - even a child today can point & click and get a good photo.
• advances in mobile phones - that allow photos taken to be sent remotely to a website or the newspaper's editors.
• coupled with drop in prices that made it accessible to almost everyone

A long time ago (say, from 1930s to 1970s), cameras and film were expensive equipment that required training to use.
Photographers learned about proper exposure, films, how to focus, apertures, shutter speed, ASA, darkroom film processing, enlargement to get prints, motor drives, spot metering, push & pull techniques in processing, dodge & burn, etc....
The people who knew how-to were called Photographers.
Once upon a time they were esteemed as Professionals.
Those who made a name for their style were even considered Artists.

Unfortunately in 2013, not anymore.

For newspapers, what counts is not the beauty and composition of the photo.
What counts is being on the spot at the right time when a big news event happens - and taking a photo.
The newspapers used to rush their staff photographers to the place where big events happened.

Nowadays, that is replaced by EVERYONE.
Because mobile phones with cameras are cheap, almost everyone on the street have it ready at all times.
Any person who happened to be there on the spot when a big news event unfolds, can take out their mobile phone and snap a photo.
Then send it instantly to a website.
Of course they can be paid a small sum for the photo by the newspaper.
That is very much less expenditure for the newspaper than employing a big group of staff photographers.

In future, digital cameras that have WIFI capabilities will become common.

For less time sensitive news articles, the OMO concept kicks in.
Staff reporters/journalists will be trained on how to use their mobile phone cameras.
The writers are expected to write the news story/article and DOUBLE UP as the photographer as well.
This will mean big savings in labour costs for the newspapers.

By early 2000's when computers and word processing software became common place, companies and offices no longer needed TYPISTS. They became obsolete.

The same will happen to newspaper staff photographers from 2013 onwards.
 

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An drew

Senior Member
May 27, 2005
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#9
Thanks for the analysis.
 

Foxshade

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Jun 26, 2009
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#11
the quality of photojournalism has just taken a Great Leap Forward :D
.... and landed on the tile with a snake tail on it, like in the snake and ladder game...

In all jobs there are people who just do the bare minimum for the sake of doing their job. However, there are select few who are doing it because they are passionate about what they are doing.

The difference can be clearly seen in the result of their work.

Sadly, more and more people got the thinking: Why should I do extra if other who doesn't is paid all the same?

The key for me is: Do you take pride in your work?
 

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