Chicago Sun Times Photo Dept

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I went to a MIPA meeting and a Sun Times Photog gave a talk and you would not believe how they hustle all over town all hours of the day and night carrying heavy equipment to get the Pulitzer prize photos.

If they think they will get a reporter with a cell phone to do it, they are mistaken. But that is bean counters for you.
 
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Here's a blog that compares the Chicago Sun Times (which cut photo staff in exchange for reporter iPhone coverage) vs the Chicago Tribune (with a real pro photo staff):

http://suntimesdarktimes.tumblr.com/

You can still arm real pros with iPhones and they'll snap infinitely better photographs.
 
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The difference is remarkable.

But is it worth the extra cost? The pretty pictures by the pros are nice, but I think in this age of instant gratification and sound bites, most readers don't really care too much about the picture and focus on content of the article.

Take for instance the Chik-fil-A articles in the blog. The one on the left shows a very sterile product shot of one of their sandwiches, while the one on the right shows the emotion and enthusiasm of the customers waiting to go in. The reality is the shot on the right doesn't stand on its own because it still needs a narrative. This could be a stock photo that can be used for Starbuck's or McDonalds.

And here's is what one of the readers on the blog said, which I agree mostly with, except the part "Sun-Times screwed up". I still say these types of decisions made by corporations are going to be the norm to adapt to the ever changing landscape. Another way to look at it is if the Sun-Times kept the photog staff in place they probably would have been so financially strapped that failure is imminent. Which would still result in the same people not having jobs.

Anonymous asked: I would love to see side-by-side screen shots instead of scrolling. A coworker sent me the link to this site. I didn't understand it at first. The gray type below the page headline/name - it was hard to read and I didn't see it at first. I loved the comparisons though. I think if there was a way to do side-by-side images - it would have even more of a punch and drive the message home that the Sun-Times screwed up. I hope all the photo staff have found better jobs. ~ waynette traub (arkansas)
 
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Wonder how long Playboy would last, if they laid off all the photographers? Nobody looks at the pictures anyway....they only buy the magazine for the articles.
 
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An issue not addressed is access to good shooting points. Public shooters from a distance aren't going to be in position to take the same shots as credentialed pros.

I was thinking this exact same thing looking at the confetti photo.... seemed to likely be a great photo thx to a great location that the "average Joe" photographer would not have been able to be in.
 
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An issue not addressed is access to good shooting points. Public shooters from a distance aren't going to be in position to take the same shots as credentialed pros.

If you have media credentials, access should be the same. It's the lack of proper equipment and photojournalistic training that makes all the difference. Like I said earlier, even a trained photog with an iPhone would still pull off better shots.
 
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Wonder how long Playboy would last, if they laid off all the photographers? Nobody looks at the pictures anyway....they only buy the magazine for the articles.

That is an irrelevant comparison. One can point out that, without any illustrations, the novels of Stephen King sell very well. So your point is?
 
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Wonder how long Playboy would last, if they laid off all the photographers? Nobody looks at the pictures anyway....they only buy the magazine for the articles.

They would fold just as quick as the pornography industry has.:rolleyes:

That's another good example of why none of this is relevant to pro photogs livelihood being threatened by amateurs or that people really care about the content being snapped with an iPhone. Bottom line, there really is no issue here.
 
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If you have media credentials, access should be the same. It's the lack of proper equipment and photojournalistic training that makes all the difference. Like I said earlier, even a trained photog with an iPhone would still pull off better shots.

The real question, is the extra cost for all of that REALLY worth it? If you are not ready to admit that is a key consideration than the discussion is really not worth having. From an aesthetic and emotional standpoint, I enjoy the great photos and art these photogs produce and am sad they got laid off, but I must look at the big picture. And if you or they believe this layoff was a surprise came out of the blue that happened when they came to work the next day, the blinders were on. I'm betting they saw the writing on the wall a couple years ago, but didn't want to see the warning signs.
 
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They would fold just as quick as the pornography industry has.:rolleyes:

That's another good example of why none of this is relevant to pro photogs livelihood being threatened by amateurs or that people really care about the content being snapped with an iPhone. Bottom line, there really is no issue here.

It actually does. Free and good enough is the norm in the porn business too. With good video equipment and cameras available to the masses combined with an exhibition society, entertainment is being provided by the end user now.

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-fi-ct-porn10-2009aug10,0,3356050.story

http://alvin.foo.my/2007/06/user-generated-porn-content-hurting.html
 
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It actually does. Free and good enough is the norm in the porn business too. With good video equipment and cameras available to the masses combined with an exhibition society, entertainment is being provided by the end user now.

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-fi-ct-porn10-2009aug10,0,3356050.story

http://alvin.foo.my/2007/06/user-generated-porn-content-hurting.html

Not really, what point the LA Times article drives home is it is more about stagnation and the short window an "actress" has by her own design. Going from making $150K a year to only $50K means there is a small window of opportunity for each actress. Yes, there are only so many movies she can make before the audience tires of her or she ages to the point where she doesn't bring in the big coin. Of course while she might be only bringing in $50K the new girl on the block is bring in that $150K figure. It's competition and natural selection. Adapt or die.
 
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Not really, what point the LA Times article drives home is it is more about stagnation and the short window an "actress" has by her own design. Going from making $150K a year to only $50K means there is a small window of opportunity for each actress. Yes, there are only so many movies she can make before the audience tires of her or she ages to the point where she doesn't bring in the big coin. Of course while she might be only bringing in $50K the new girl on the block is bring in that $150K figure. It's competition and natural selection. Adapt or die.

That's what you got out of it? You didn't read the part about declining salaries because of all the free porn? Or the business owner who saw a 50% decline in business?

The article isn't about the small window of opportunity for an actress but the industry as a whole trying to compete against free.

"The death of the DVD business has been more accelerated in the adult business than mainstream," said Bill Asher, co-chairman of adult industry giant Vivid Entertainment, who estimates that his company's revenue is down more than 20% this year.

"We always said that once the Internet took off, we'd be OK," he added. "It never crossed our minds that we'd be competing with people who just give it away for free."
 
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That's what you got out of it? You didn't read the part about declining salaries because of all the free porn? Or the business owner who saw a 50% decline in business?

The article isn't about the small window of opportunity for an actress but the industry as a whole trying to compete against free.

"The death of the DVD business has been more accelerated in the adult business than mainstream," said Bill Asher, co-chairman of adult industry giant Vivid Entertainment, who estimates that his company's revenue is down more than 20% this year.

"We always said that once the Internet took off, we'd be OK," he added. "It never crossed our minds that we'd be competing with people who just give it away for free."

The DVD business has nothing to do with. It was just another vehicle or vessel to deliver the product or content. What you are seeing is just another industry that got lazy and complacent and sat there while the world passed them by. They didn't grasp the power of the net and give their customer base what they want and now they are crying sour grapes because someone else did, same tune we heard from B&M camera stores and.....
 
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The DVD business has nothing to do with. It was just another vehicle or vessel to deliver the product or content. What you are seeing is just another industry that got lazy and complacent and sat there while the world passed them by. They didn't grasp the power of the net and give their customer base what they want and now they are crying sour grapes because someone else did, same tune we heard from B&M camera stores and.....


Yes, and they have to figure out how to compete against free. It creates less opportunities for paying jobs. I don't recommend anyone trying to be a pro photographer. Photography is a commodity and there isn't much value in it. When Pulitzer prize winning photographers are loosing to free pics on iPhones the profession is dead.

Photography in general is booming. Photography as a profession is dwindelling with fewer opportunities because free is good enough. Yes, you can be succesful but there are fewer people wanting to pay for content.

You keep saying in all these type of discussions the photographer has to adapt or die. There isn't anything to adapt to. The opportunities are shrinking. Pro photographers are getting out.
 
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Yes, and they have to figure out how to compete against free. It creates less opportunities for paying jobs. I don't recommend anyone trying to be a pro photographer. Photography is a commodity and there isn't much value in it. When Pulitzer prize winning photographers are loosing to free pics on iPhones the profession is dead.

Photography in general is booming. Photography as a profession is dwindelling with fewer opportunities because free is good enough. Yes, you can be succesful but there are fewer people wanting to pay for content.

You keep saying in all these type of discussions the photographer has to adapt or die. There isn't anything to adapt to. The opportunities are shrinking. Pro photographers are getting out.

I wonder where Annie Leibovitz would be if she were reading this forum? I'm sure she isn't the norm, but there are a lot of aspiring photographers that are doing really well for themselves. Frankly, what I see out of all of this the only thing holding these complaining "pros" back is the negative attitude they have. Of course it is easier to feel sorry for yourself and whine about how the world is against you and how everyone is putting you down. Photography is not dead, nowhere near it, the only thing dead is drive, desire, and worth ethic when everyone thinks they are entitled to a paycheck instead of craeting opportunity.
 
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I wonder where Annie Leibovitz would be if she were reading this forum? I'm sure she isn't the norm, but there are a lot of aspiring photographers that are doing really well for themselves. Frankly, what I see out of all of this the only thing holding these complaining "pros" back is the negative attitude they have. Of course it is easier to feel sorry for yourself and whine about how the world is against you and how everyone is putting you down. Photography is not dead, nowhere near it, the only thing dead is drive, desire, and worth ethic when everyone thinks they are entitled to a paycheck instead of craeting opportunity.

Annie isn't a photojournalist competing against free photos from readers or iphone equipped reporters.

Do you not get there are fewer opportunities? It doesn't matter how driven you are, or how creative, or your work ethic. It is very difficult to compete against free.

This isn't "feeling sorry" for oneself nor is it "negative". It is the reality for anyone wanting to be a photographer.
 
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Annie isn't a photojournalist competing against free photos from readers or iphone equipped reporters.

Do you not get there are fewer opportunities? It doesn't matter how driven you are, or how creative, or your work ethic. It is very difficult to compete against free.

This isn't "feeling sorry" for oneself nor is it "negative". It is the reality for anyone wanting to be a photographer.

Doesn't matter, she's still a photographer. I'm sure there are iPhone weilding individuals that can compete with Annie's work.

There are always opportunities, it is just a matter of finding them.

But everyone can't be a winner all the time. Might have to look at the game rules from a different perspective.
 

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