See a lot of jobs doing this to photographers nowadays.


Reportage

Senior Member
Nov 24, 2008
5,785
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#1
You may or may have not kanna before so whats below-mentioned might be just in time or too late.

What happens is that they call and would like you to help cover their event for a pittance or pro bono. It is a "charity" event and thus no way to pay your normal rates and etc etc including saying you will be the only photographer.

When you turn up at the venue, its more like a full blown gala event with budget around tens of thousands and whats more already have a event photographer paid about many times your pittance doing he same job. In most cases, not the only pittance paid photographer for the photographer as well. When ask the person who contacted you regarding this, apparently there were some last minute changes and apologises for not informing earlier of the changes.

Asked around and apparently its catching on...what HR or Events services do is that they have a list of competent photographers and so will call each one in the list or post up in forums with lures/baits of opportunities to take portfolio pics to attract as many photographers as needed to make the event more glam. What they have done earlier is contracted their own photographer to take the pics they want. They do this because its more impressive having a troop of photographers since it makes the event more impressive to the stake holders and guests. Example for fashion its not really that impressive when all you have is one photog and one videoman at the end of the runway. Stakeholders like brand reps usually would question why so little media attention.

what they dont know is usually i am acquainted with their paid photographers so i know what they are getting for the amount they are paying. i note this down on my calendar and next year will use it for reference if they call me again. Most of the time if i keep reminding them about their paid photographer, they dont call back already.

has anyone kanna similar or a variation of the above scenario?
 

catchlights

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
21,903
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Punggol, Singapore
www.foto-u.com
#2
thanks for sharing.

I guess this only happen is when the photographers are so hard up to take up any jobs with little pay,
usually the photographers won't be bother so much if they are being paid in full rate.

So even if have 10 photographers shooting the same event, who cares?
 

Oct 19, 2009
1,669
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#3
I gotta agree with Reportage, especially when you are talking about events, where some felt that MORE photographers = IMPRESSIVE, MASSIVE events.

I would say, attend this or that event as an "un-paid" photographer and enjoy it, not to complain about the "paid" photographers. This is one thing, do things that would make yourself happy and enjoyable, doing things that you love comes first.

If not, just decline the offer of the particular assignment, and move on.

Another problem, is not with the "un-paid" photographers, that is only one thing, the other thing is about "paid" photographers. Oh gosh.. That is even worst is some scenario. Firstly, both parties agreed about a certain sum of money, shoot and wait for payment. The thing is that some companies / organizations love to play the "dragging" game. ie, When you call them, they would say they are not free, busy, haven't got the approval from the above, etc.. " If the initial agreement was to collect 50% first and 50% after was still fine even though photographers, in the end, could not retrieve the other 50%...

I used to put money $$ first, but later finding myself, not enjoying what I really want to do. I as a both hobby and freelance photographer, did not feel happy about it. I became happy only after I put Photographer first, Money second, where I have the mindset of, "clients engaged me, I do my best. If they don't pay me, I try my best. If not, I take it as a lesson learn. My purpose is to be happy and not to quarrel over money"

My about point of view as part of my experiences.. no offence or bad intentions to anyone.
 

Jul 20, 2008
345
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North
www.flickr.com
#4
Kudos to TS for pointing this out. Same thing happened to me too.

But I did not felt disappointed with the monetary issues, instead I was disappointed when places in that venue was off-limits. I attend one event like this recently.

I did not felt cheated when I was not promised with any pay or allowance, as I signed up voluntarily. But when they did not allow us the non-paid photographers to get close to the stage and better places to take photos (the places that we were allowed was shitty)
I asked myself: "wtf am I actually doing?!". And so I just kept my gears, held my camera and treated myself to the show instead of acting like clown.

I really felt disappointed and TS finally enlightened me that they are actually dressing us up as clowns to their target audience.

But I was able to enjoy the show and get free tickets for my friend, haha so on that account I don't really blame them after all.

Though said, to all the photographers who are interested in such events next time, don't bother to bring your usual gears, treat your camera with respect and take photos with dignity. Unless, it is really a REAL charity event.

Otherwise leave it to the specific paid photographer and videographer, am I right to say that?
 

Reportage

Senior Member
Nov 24, 2008
5,785
2
0
#5
thanks for sharing.

I guess this only happen is when the photographers are so hard up to take up any jobs with little pay,
usually the photographers won't be bother so much if they are being paid in full rate.

So even if have 10 photographers shooting the same event, who cares?
depends...if their budget for hors d'œuvres actually supersedes their willingness to pay for quality photos then thats a lot to swallow for any photographer who took the job on initial impression the event really needed a "free" photographer. There are those who simply shrug it off...there are those who make an issue of it...so just be prepared and research thoroughly like calling the venue and enquiring on the scale of the event beforehand before agreeing.
 

catchlights

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 27, 2004
21,903
46
48
Punggol, Singapore
www.foto-u.com
#6
the bottom line is
if you shoot for fun, do whatever pleases you.

if you are shooting for a good cause, you only need answer to your God, and not anyone else,

if you are shooting for money, do whatever you need to do and get the compensation you entitle.
 

pasay

New Member
May 13, 2010
508
0
0
Singapore
#7
the bottom line is
if you shoot for fun, do whatever pleases you.

if you are shooting for a good cause, you only need answer to your God, and not anyone else,

if you are shooting for money, do whatever you need to do and get the compensation you entitle.
i like this, covers a lot with so little words. :thumbsup:
 

Jan 3, 2008
823
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0
SG
#8
@catchlights well said

however humans do get emotional at times, especially when they "feel" cheated.
 

sjackal

Senior Member
Jul 9, 2008
4,490
10
38
#9
Kudos to TS for pointing this out. Same thing happened to me too.

But I did not felt disappointed with the monetary issues, instead I was disappointed when places in that venue was off-limits. I attend one event like this recently.

I did not felt cheated when I was not promised with any pay or allowance, as I signed up voluntarily. But when they did not allow us the non-paid photographers to get close to the stage and better places to take photos (the places that we were allowed was shitty)
I asked myself: "wtf am I actually doing?!". And so I just kept my gears, held my camera and treated myself to the show instead of acting like clown.

I really felt disappointed and TS finally enlightened me that they are actually dressing us up as clowns to their target audience.

But I was able to enjoy the show and get free tickets for my friend, haha so on that account I don't really blame them after all.

Though said, to all the photographers who are interested in such events next time, don't bother to bring your usual gears, treat your camera with respect and take photos with dignity. Unless, it is really a REAL charity event.

Otherwise leave it to the specific paid photographer and videographer, am I right to say that?
You reminded me of a past incident I observed and I would like to share it.

I was covering a certain glamor/invited-only charity event, as part of the many invited medias both local and regional. When I reached the event, I saw a lot of young photogs, students age, ie Poly or JC. Quite obvious they are innocent hobbyists with no idea but they were polite nice people and when chatted said they were indeed volunteers for the charity event. In my mind I go "For real?" With that kind of budget for such events, do they really need student volunteers? Or its someone trying to maximize their profits?

Exactly as you said, they were there to volunteer their time but were made used of by whoever was the events company managing it. After the first hour, the big shots and some international stars arrived (along with their security who are very sensitive towards photogr/paparazis/crazy fans) and the group of young photogs all disappeared. Its quite obvious that they were made to leave by the very same events company who asked them to volunteer. My guess is that their purpose is glam up the event during the initial hour but once the real thing starts their presence is no longer wanted and they were conveniently dumped. If they were lured by the chance to take pics of/with big shots and made to leave exactly once the big shots arrive, they must be feeling sad and angry. That is no way to treat people.

They are still plenty of good events company to work with, but just that amateurs/hobbyists usually end up with the bad ones coz its usually these type who ask for free work.
 

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JasonB

Deregistered
Jun 2, 2009
871
9
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#10
A reservist friend of mine runs an advertising firm that also do some events management. He told me he me his very willing to pay my rates for commercial photography but for events he prefers to come here on Clubsnap to hire affordable photogs for $10 per hour and if he can find goondoo doing for free his even happier. Since amatuers on clubsnap often have better and more showy gear than real pros it makes his company look good too. To him as a business man it makes sense. He knows his getting crap from the wannabe photogs but that is why he always hire 2 or 3 amatuers and use the best shots out of their collective effort. If he find a good photog that is stupid enough to be manipulated by him, he will squeeze that goondoo again and again and again till the poor guy wakes up and then he will come here on clubsnap to find new goondoos.

From a photog stand point I wanna punch his face. From a business point of view his just trying to keep his company. The cheapo photogs are responsible for their own mistreatment too.
 

Agetan

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2004
4,669
15
38
www.tomato.sg
#11
Generally, I do charge at full amount but I will donate every cent of it to the same charity. That way every cents that raise for charity will reach the charity.

For the second year, if I have worked with them and knowing their genuine intention, I am happy to help the true charity without any payment.

This is how I will shield myself from this type of situation.

A non genuine charitable organisation will avoid these. So don't fall into the victim of such people.

Regards,

Hart
 

sjackal

Senior Member
Jul 9, 2008
4,490
10
38
#12
Generally, I do charge at full amount but I will donate every cent of it to the same charity. That way every cents that raise for charity will reach the charity.

For the second year, if I have worked with them and knowing their genuine intention, I am happy to help the true charity without any payment.

This is how I will shield myself from this type of situation.

A non genuine charitable organisation will avoid these. So don't fall into the victim of such people.

Regards,

Hart
This is a great idea.
 

#13
A reservist friend of mine runs an advertising firm that also do some events management. He told me he me his very willing to pay my rates for commercial photography but for events he prefers to come here on Clubsnap to hire affordable photogs for $10 per hour and if he can find goondoo doing for free his even happier. Since amatuers on clubsnap often have better and more showy gear than real pros it makes his company look good too. To him as a business man it makes sense. He knows his getting crap from the wannabe photogs but that is why he always hire 2 or 3 amatuers and use the best shots out of their collective effort. If he find a good photog that is stupid enough to be manipulated by him, he will squeeze that goondoo again and again and again till the poor guy wakes up and then he will come here on clubsnap to find new goondoos.

From a photog stand point I wanna punch his face. From a business point of view his just trying to keep his company. The cheapo photogs are responsible for their own mistreatment too.
so true.
 

Reportage

Senior Member
Nov 24, 2008
5,785
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#14
Also another trend is that event managers are spamming the email boxes of school photography clubs that are well known to have big big cameras or very well reputed schools and then offer them "opportunity" to shoot a high end event with exciting possibilities for photos. Unless the club president is very practical in the business sense, most of the time its a freebie job with meals provided and points given for a morning till night asignment but in the end their access is like the same as any public photographer on that day itself.

i wouldnt be surprised if by now these photography clubs have a blacklist of jobs not to take.
 

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Sep 13, 2011
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Tiny Red Dot
www.blitzwerkz.com
#15
Hi,

Reminds me of a charity event held at Takashimaya 3 years back then. My friend told me she was a volunteer in organizing the event too. She told me to help out the event as event photographer, and since I drive, the organizing committee would reimburse me the transport charge of S$50/-. As a friend and for a clause of charity, I agreed to help. Then came the event, which to my astonishment, saw some other event photographers. Well since I went there I took all the necessary stuffs till event ended. By chance, I sat down and chatted with 2 of the photogs to share our experiences and some discussions!

After sometimes, the chairperson came and handed the photogs the namecard. When it's my turn, the chairperson mentioned that he didn't recall any transport claims as I had claimed to be. Well then I didnt want to mention name of my friend, so I told him it's fine, I would send him the CDs as well since I took the full event. I passed him my namecard too as he asked for one.

Then after approximately 10 months later, his secretary emailed me to ask me as a volunteer photog. I saw a whole list of other photogs... I was like dot dot dot... So I replied to say I was busy. This kind of daji once is enough!

Regards.
 

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Sep 13, 2011
42
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Tiny Red Dot
www.blitzwerkz.com
#16
Generally, I do charge at full amount but I will donate every cent of it to the same charity. That way every cents that raise for charity will reach the charity.

For the second year, if I have worked with them and knowing their genuine intention, I am happy to help the true charity without any payment.

This is how I will shield myself from this type of situation.

A non genuine charitable organisation will avoid these. So don't fall into the victim of such people.

Regards,

Hart
I admire your style :) good example for others to follow :)
 

2100

Senior Member
Mar 3, 2004
3,591
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#18
Yep Reportage, actually this kind of thing already happened like quite a while ago, i was contacted by an event company to take up (1) Official PG and (2) to enlist at least 5 PGs to glam up the event. Plus they also can cover me if i cannot get the good shots. Pay is like $100 for 3hrs. I told them can up a bit or not, last time 8 years ago when i super part time it was also $100 per hour (but only for 1 hr - but hey that's already v good as a HDB 5-room at JW top floor unit you can get for well under 200k! LOL!)...and it was like very minor editing like i run batch file processing for curves only.

I rejected them. Don't believe this kind of thing is the way to go.... and I never accepted any more jobs from that company already.

Thanks for posting the info Reportage. It's high time i think. I think PGs at the low and even middle end need to protect themselves nowadays.

I am sure for those who are working in the corporate world as day-time job knows that is some lousy pathetic sectors like IT, it really is not easy to earn money. From what i see in weddings, some people are quite hard-up, but of course as you all know from the Y or Z gen, they do want quality, they do compare, and they do WANT.

Maybe i am getting old....LOL! Knees giving me problems already....last nite i woke up with my left knee feeling as if it's having arthritis! WTF...
 

2100

Senior Member
Mar 3, 2004
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#19
So far for those charity events i have not been asked to do all these....but seriously also no time, since most weekends except 7th month are booked. LOL!

But maybe i will try to do some charity work next year, volunteer or something. I have decided to stop taking weddings and my last booking is 12/12/12, believe i have less than 30 jobs next year as of now so it's all good not too many, do my other biz and concentrate on day jobbie and catch up with my hobbies and family. What I really miss is Sat/Sun to have a weekend off and just chill out! Maybe get some good karma. heh... Remember, in 2004 in this biz say $800 then is ~1.6k now. More eg, my own wedding then at Intercontinental it was $688 weekdays for a 9-course dinner (just v standard dishes though)....but remember standard PG/VG also at the same price range of 1 table. One of my clients i casually asked how much was his 5-rm which is within walking distance from Pioneer MRT now (then still no MRT) it was below 200k, IIRC it was 175k. Even the houses at P@D were 292k to just over 400k. Now how much....
 

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