Killing Journalists Should Be a Crime of War

In a terse statement, appropriate in both it’s tone and style, the president and CEO of the Associated Press, Gary Pruitt, says:

… we believe the assassination of a journalist in wartime should be considered an international crime of war.

I would add that the killing of any journalist, at any time, should be considered, if not a war crime, akin to a hate crime.

NPPA Attorney Headed to Ferguson

It’s never a good thing when the lead attorney for a national press organization has to go somewhere, but it’s happening – the National Press Photographer Association’s Mickey Osterreicher is en route to Ferguson, Missouri, to help journalists deal with the escalating problems of press freedoms.

THIS is why we pay our annual dues to the NPPA.

Is Humans Dehumanizing New York?

A significant number of my students love Brandon Stanton’s Humans of New York project. And I’ll admit I dip into it from time to time, as well.

But something about it never felt quite right. Daniel D’Addario has a piece up at Gawker that gets to the issue, I think – it’s the lack of depth, a skimming of the people, that has troubled me. These are fascinating slices of life, but that’s all they are – little, tiny, controlled slices.

Who Pays Photographers?

Great web site that launched this summer that tracks what photographers are being paid.

A caveat: You need to know what you’re in for before you do a shoot. There are several posts in here where it is clear the photographer didn’t have a contract before hand (or just didn’t read it) and is a little bitter after-the-fact. Everything is negotiable and that includes your ability to say no.

(Thanks to Dylan Wilson for the link.)

Photoshelter Deal for Students

To all the students heading back to campus, PhotoShelter has a deal for you – a year of free services and a massive 70% off the second year.

If you don’t have a solid web presence yet, this is the time to get working on it.

Morel Verdict Upheld

I am not a legal expert, but my reading of the just-released Agence France-Presse v. Daniel Morel appeal indicates that the bulk of Daniel Morel’s verdict is being upheld - Agence France-Presse and Getty Images owe him $1.2 million in copyright damages.

Waiting for the experts to start chiming in …

UPDATE: Photo District News has the story.

(Thanks to Vin Catania for the link.)

The Imagery of Ferguson

A good thought piece by Randy Kennedy and Jennifer Schuessler at the New York Times about the similarities and dissimilarities of the images coming out of Ferguson, Missouri, and how they mimic those from the Civil Rights movement fifty years ago.

The closing paragraph quoting University of California Santa Crus Professor Martin A. Gerger should give us all pause:

“We can look at these pictures and say that Ferguson is the same as Los Angeles or Birmingham, because it looks the same,” Dr. Berger said. “But we have to ask not just, ‘What is the same?’ but also, ‘What are the ways in which America has changed?’ To just have another conversation that stops at the level of police brutality doesn’t really get us very far.”

In the same way we can be enraged or engaged by an individual image, we must look deeper than just what is before us. One moment in time can stop us, but if it does not make us look deeper, then what did it matter?

NPPA Protests Ferguson Police Tactics

As journalists have come under fire and been detained, the National Press Photographers Association’s has sent a letter of protest to the Ferguson, Missouri police.

Many Faces of the Same Man

There has been a lot written about the death of Robin Williams over the last few days, much of it touching upon nerves that run deep within me.

As a visual journalist, one of our challenges is sharing the personality of our subjects with our audience and Krystam Grow over at Time’s Lightbox blog has given us six images of Mr. Williams and snippets from the photographers who made them.

On Them, Us and We (Briefly)

Slate has posted a short video from a panel discussing the late photojournalist, Chris Hondros. It’s a little under six minutes and in now way is enough about him or his work, but this one quote from Hondros stuck out:

We place these layers of culture and ethnicity on ourselves and it really doesn’t mean that much compared to the human experience.

As I get ready for the fall semester, I’ve been thinking a lot about the framework I’d like to work within, understanding and expounding upon the idea that photojournalism is just a tool and a platform, that it’s what you do with this tool and from this platform that matters.

I’m not there yet, but I’m close …

(Thanks to Sara D. Caldwell for the link.)