Monday, August 31, 2009

Visa pour L'image


Visa is upon us and shortly I will be heading up to Perpignan. For those who would like to know more about this legendary event, here's a nice survival guide over at Dominick Tyler's blog on what to expect and bring, a part from cigarettes and your scarf.

See you up there!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Americans need the media to give us the truth in the healthcare debate.

'Truth' vs. 'facts' from America's media
Americans need the media to give us the truth in the healthcare debate.

By Neal Gabler
L.A. Times
August 23, 2009

T.S. Eliot was wrong. August is the cruelest month. As we head toward next month's congressional face-off on a national healthcare bill, the news media are infatuated with town hall meetings. Over and over, we see angry citizens screaming about a Big Government takeover of the healthcare system, shouting that they will lose their insurance or be forced to give up their doctors and denouncing "death panels" that will euthanize old people.

Of course, none of this is even remotely true. These are all canards peddled by insurance companies terrified of losing their power and profits, by right-wing militants terrified of a victory for the president they hate and by the Republican Party, which has been commandeered by the insurance industry and the militants. But the lies have obviously had their effect. Recent polls show that support for healthcare reform -- reform that would insure more Americans, would force insurance companies to cover preexisting conditions and prevent them from capriciously terminating coverage, and would provide competition to drive down costs -- is rapidly eroding.

Maybe Americans should know better. Maybe they shouldn't fall for the latest imbecilic propaganda and scare tactics. Maybe. But a citizenry is only as well-informed as the quality of information it receives.

(continue)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Constantly Looking Over Your Shoulder




Here is a recent follow-up story on the state of African migrants in Spain using some of my images from Living in the Shadows. You can find the actual story in Flemish at Belgium's De Standaard and a Google generated translation here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cryptic email from Intl Photography Awards


Anyone else get this crazy cryptic email?

Hello charlie mahoney,

Your entry 'Maldvies' into the 2009 International Photography Awards.

Has been selected for ROUND 1 Judging .

Sincerely,

The Int'l Photography Awards

What is that?!?!?!

Monday, August 10, 2009

New York Times Laments the Death of Photojournalism



PARIS — When photojournalists and their admirers gather in southern France at the end of August for Visa pour l’Image, the annual celebration of their craft, many practitioners may well be wondering how much longer they can scrape by.

Newspapers and magazines are cutting back sharply on picture budgets or going out of business altogether, and television stations have cut back on news coverage in favor of less-costly fare. Pictures and video snapped by amateurs on cellphones are posted to Web sites minutes after events have occurred. Photographers trying to make a living from shooting the news call it a crisis.

To continue reading click here.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Publishers: Doh! Creating a desireable product!

Publishers and editors just don't get it: it's the quality that counts. Here is a well expressed argument with some real solutions by Samir Husni at his blog Mr. Magazine.com.

Innovation in Print: The Answer to Print Suicide… Create a Necessary and Sufficient Print Product

Here is a simple, doable solution for print people to utilize so that they will stop killing their printed products: create a necessary and sufficient print product.

It is that simple. I kid you not. If you want to ensure the survival of your printed product, you need to create a product that is both necessary and sufficient. Publishing 360 or publishing plus has been greatly misinterpreted and misused. Print people understood Publishing 360 as the need to be in print, on the web, on television, etc. shuffling from one medium to the other. You read excerpts of an interview in the magazine, then you go to the web to read the entire interview and watch the video. You pick up the newspaper and almost after every story there is a link to go to the web for more. Print folks keep on pushing people to put down the newspaper or the magazine down and head to the web for more. What type of reading experience you are going to have if you have to stop reading and head to the web after few paragraphs, and how often are you going to come back. On the other hand, very few publishers use the web to send people to print and to encourage them to pick up a printed copy of their products.

Print folks have lost confidence in their printed product and they are trying to create a hybrid product that sooner or later will eliminate the need for the same product they are attempting to save. If I do not need something, then for sure it is not going to be sufficient for me. You can’t be satisfied with something you do not need or want. Our dying newspapers have eliminated the need or even the want to be picked up and have ignored, albeit with few exceptions, the simple answer to the question What Is In It For Me (The WIIFM factor).

It is not the first time that I say print is not dying, just the folks who owns it are committing suicide. I firmly believe that our salvation is going to be in ensuring that each and every product, we media people produce, must be necessary and sufficient. Whether it is the newspaper, the web site or the video, each and every one of these products must provide readers/viewers with a self-satisfying experience that folks will lose themselves while interacting with that product. Publishing 360 should not mean that our readers/viewers are going to hop from one medium to the other in order to get the complete picture or experience. We are not in the business of hopping, but rather of reading or viewing. Leave the hopping to the rabbits, and give the humans reading or viewing relevant materials in the relevant medium that they desire.

(continue)