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Sortir du cadre think wider, future of photojournalism

Bulb | 2010


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The death of journalism is bad for society, but we’ll be better off with less photojournalism. I won’t miss the self-important, self-congratulatory, hypocritical part of photojournalism at all. The industry has been a fraud for some time. We created an industry where photography is like biggame hunting. We created an industry of contests that reinforce a hyperdramatic view of the world. Hyperbole is what makes the double spread (sells) and is also the picture that wins the contest. We end up with cartoons and concerned photographer myths (disclaimer: yes, there are photographers doing meaningful work) Of course I am worried about how I will make my living now, and I worry for my friends and colleagues too, but I don’t really care about the future of photojournalism. The soul of it has been rotten for a while.

Chris Anderson - Magnum


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Introduction

PART I

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All publishers

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Monetization

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The Newspaper industry

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Graphic

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Photojournalism

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Bio

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Economy of photojournalism

PART II p .20

Introduction

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Product & Process

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Cross & Transmedia

N.B: Click on the menu to jump to the page you want to read.


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INTRODUCTION The year 2010 will probably be remembered as the year during which the Newspaper industry definitively switched to Internet. The year when innovation has been the most needed and when discussions about Journalist economic model have been more virulent and its future tainted with such uncer tainty. Never has this industry been impacted as much from the lack of funds and the disaffection of adver tising. Never, have photojournalists suffered as much to finance their work and play their role as witnesses. The multiplication of battle fronts has weakened photographers all around the world and despite their will to embrace technologies they have been torn apar t between modernism, corporatism and conservatism. Today, Photojournalism, still in its infancy, tries to reinvent itself and struggles to find a new path. When a photographer writes with light, a journalist writes with the light of truth. Since Enrich Salomon, the meaning of our profession didn’t change at all. In a way, even if we are the heirs of ancient photojournalism we still do have a role to play by perpetuating this way of life and this approach of humanity. Our mission to bear witness of this changing


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world doesn’t necessarily have to be translated into printed photo stories in Magazines or Newspapers. It can be as efficient in a digital world as long as we put in it the same dedication and passion. But truth to be told, digital brings us such a new variety of tools, that we would be crazy not to try them all. We would be irresponsible not to try to master these new ways to communicate and test new approaches. This dynamic of research and innovation, star ted by some among us, should be increased and extended to everybody in this community. Because the traditional model is dying, we have the imperative necessity to evolve in order to survive. Photojournalists actually must challenge the status quo and be courageous enough to stand for new behaviors. This should neither be considered a rejection of the past, nor a questioning of the fundamental rules of ethics. But in contrary, this should be perceived as a chance for us to preserve an ar t which produced the most incredible pictures in the world and still provide light where there is darkness in this world. G.H December 2010


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We all know that Newspapers are dying. From the United States to France, from Great Britain to Spain, the old economic model is pushing them to the tomb. For quite a while, the creation and distribution of news has been largely impacted by the rise of TV and radio. A phenomenon amplified by the changing habits of consumers, already star ted before the Internet era.

A - The Newspaper Industry

But since 5 years ago, thanks to an exponential multiplication of free News sources on Internet (even if they were published by pure players or by the old guard) and substantial erosion of readership, combined with the disengagement of adver tising in the traditional revenue stream, has led to an unprecedented collapse of Newspaper’s healthiness in OCDE countries. As Clay Shirky and Jeff Jarvis have analyzed it, we’ve seen most publications suddenly facing a much higher competition and declining incomes, after years characterized by high performances and rising revenues. If we take a look at the numbers, two third of OCDE countries have seen their audience melt significantly. A pattern, even more present among young people below 35yrs, who are less likely reading a newspaper than their counterpar ts of 50yrs and more. As a matter of fact, the growth of the whole Newspaper market has slowed in 2004, stopped in 2007, and star ted to decline in 2008 and 2009 in every segment of the market. National or local newspapers, in France or in the USA, Italy, Greece or Spain, nobody was spared.


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In France, structural factors, a lack of private funding, enormous print and distribution costs (caused in par t by a monopolistic position of the NMPP, a public distribution service for Newspapers and magazines) and adver tising declining revenues, have weighted on the market and made it weaker than it was meant to be. When you look at the annual budget of a middle class household, Newspapers and Magazines represent a small percentage compared to mobile phone and internet access. Recent researches show that Newspaper’s sales have declined faster between 2006-2007, and even faster in 2008 (-2.3% compared with the previous year, -16% compared to 2000). The biggest losers are obviously National papers with a 4% setback in sales, and only 6% of their revenues coming from classified adver tising (when it was 26% in 1990). “Le Monde� recently acquired by a trio of businessmen Berge-Pigasse-Niel, was actually the first National newspaper to even consider filing for bankruptcy. Those numbers are nonetheless to be looked at with caution because some sectors are showing more robust health, like Regional and Local Newspapers undergoing a 1.2% setback in 2008.

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In USA, readership undergoes a constant erosion at every level of the social spectrum. The numbers speak for themselves: in 1960, almost 81% of the population was reading a Newspaper on a daily basis. In 2008, those who were still claiming to be a News reader (print and internet) were only 30% of the total population, after losing about 8% of its mass in only two years (2006-2008). One of the main factors of this debacle is disinterest. On average, an American reader spend only 165hr/year reading the news (at a declining rate of 20 hours per year), compared to 1022hr/yr (almost 2.8h/day) wasted watching TV. And if you consider the Adver tising revenues of Newspapers and Magazines, the setback is even more impressive with a 28% loss over the last 2 years (12% on Internet). It represents almost $10 billion in losses for publishers and surely the biggest crisis in the history of News.

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Clay Shirky, professor at the New York University, has analyzed the reasons of this unprecedented crisis. To him, the main cause is the emergence of Internet, not as a potential competitor for the Newspapers industry, but as a sharing platform. The crucial revolution here is that Internet has connected people in way that has never been done before, and has allowed them to communicate more easily. What was, back in the day, a very well-guarded for tress controlled by a cast of elite, became a large free market owned by everyone of us, defined by few rules. News on the Internet quickly became a commodity, blooming everywhere for little or no cost. Incidentally, the industry lost its control over broadcast news and failed to recognize that its monopoly was ending. The economic structure which suppor ting the rise of giants, like Time Inc., and The New York Times during the 19th and 20th century slowly collapsed and was replaced by a new one based on shareability and credibility.

…It was an accident. There was a set of forces that made that possible. And they weren’t deep truths — the commercial success of newspapers and their linking of that to accountability journalism wasn’t a deep truth about reality. C.S

The facilitation of communication and the possibility to target a specific audience more receptive to the adver tising contribute to the depletion of adver tising revenues for Newspaper industry. Classified adver tising also has escaped from a silly logic where an individual who wanted to buy a car was forced to read stories about Afghanistan, the crisis in Darfur or the last Milan Fashion show. Again, Clay Shirky explains it: Best Buy was not willing to suppor t the Baghdad bureau because Best Buy cared about news from Baghdad. They just didn’t have any other good choices.

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The mix of these two main factors – massive loss of traditional revenue streams and rise of Internet – has shaped the fatal fate of our business model. Never theless, new models don’t rise up to replace the obsolete ones. Just like a deer caught in the headlights, the publishers, paralyzed by fear, didn’t anticipate the mutation. Despite numerous analysis conducted by some of the most prominent exper ts in this field, no actions was taken to change the path of the industry. Sadly today, those who are waking up are either too slow to take any kind of decision or too old to understand the very principles behind the changes. One of the best examples is the reaction of the media magnate Rupper t Murdoch – owner of News Corporation -, who decided, in 2009, after years of indecision, that it was time for him to raise pay walls around his proper ties. Followed by other major publishers, the long and costly strategy has failed to be put in place so far (except for News Corp). In a digital world ruled by Moore’s conjectures, the Print industry doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to find out what could be its next move. Therefore, Newspapers and Magazines loose the oppor tunity to save what remains. Shirky declares:

I think a bad thing is going to happen, right? And it’s amazing to me how much, in a conversation conducted by adults, the possibility that maybe things are just going to get a lot worse for a while does not seem to be something people are taking seriously. (…) I don’t think there’s any way we can get out of that kind of thing. So I think we are headed into a long trough of decline in accountability journalism, because the old models are breaking faster than the new models can be put into place.

“There is so much media now with the Internet and people, and so easy and so cheap to start a newspaper or start a magazine, there’s just millions of voices and people want to be heard.” Ruppert Murdoch


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It’s a no brainer that the “tablet revolution” is about to take over the “print” revolution. The iPad and its successors seem to be on track to profoundly change our habits and relation to News content. Widely distributed around the world, these new devices will definitively question the imagination and the reactivity of decision makers, as well as their editorial and economic approach. If the ecosystem created by the tablets, and especially the iPad with the apps and the iAds, attracts a lot of attention we’re far from a breakthrough in terms of innovation. A closed environment where only curated and formatted content can possibly emerge is non-sense. If we consider the amazing openness of the Internet and the plethoric amount of websites far more advanced and interactive than apps are. This is actually more of an attempt to recreate the old model in a digital form, preventing us to think about what could be a fundamental new model, sustainable and stable for decades to come. The possibility to see Internet, as free as it is today is relatively thin, and indeed there’s a good chance that evolution and development will need cash to take place for the future of a highly competitive and dynamic market. In that case, it is not absurd to think that soon enough, freemium content (a mix between free and premium content) will be the norm, when totally free content and premium content will be relegated to the margin. Information will no longer be the proper ty of someone, or a company, but rather, the common currency by which we will create a new added value through analysis, digital creation or content development. With that said, everyone will have the responsibility to find a way to monetize that new added value, by any means, to survive and prosper. Obviously the public will continue to prefer free content over premium subscriptions, especially if you consider

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the troubled time we are living in. But not only that, they won’t be encouraged to migrate to a paid formula if the content is average and findable somewhere else for free. Without per tinent or original content able to attract new readers, the next generation of publishers will struggle even more. That’s why the industry needs to invest in R&D, risk taking if priority isn’t set to match this very ambitious goal, but rather to protect conservatism, ideology and blindness of decision makers. By the way, if the Newspaper industry slowly wakes up and experiments with new ways of doing journalism (collaborative, crowd sourced, or interactive journalism), or to finance it (through crowd funding or NGOs contribution) it won’t be the same for photojournalism – with the exception of some sharp mind lurking around new trends and new ideas, waiting for the best time to appropriate them.

L’agence VII a lancé en avril dernier un magazine consacre au travail de ses photographe et espère développer un nouveau business model autour de cette nouvelle création.

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Different factors have caused the biggest crisis photojournalism has ever had to face. The rise of digital culture and Internet development had facilitated creation, storage and distribution of pictures for a fraction of the cost this would have been 10 years ago. The exponential rise of volume has mechanically pulled down the price of photos (photography being considered as a commodity) and the revenue of thousands of photographers.

How did we go there?

It’s obvious that the market 50 years ago wasn’t ruled the same way as the market we know today. Actually, today’s market is the result of transposition of commercial strategies learned by young businessmen during the 80’s what was essentially a trade built since the 50’s.

B - Photojournalism

On the US side of the Atlantic ocean, when no internet connection was available anywhere in the world, very few photo agencies were in business – AP has a photo service, Blackstar was preponderant – and a legion of photojournalist were working for daily newspapers (like The New York Times) or prestigious magazines (like Life or Look). On the other side, the European market was literally crowded by a complex network of photo agencies (Magnum, Sipa, Sygma, Gamma etc…) and of course a fair amount of newspaper staffers working for publication such as Liberation, Paris Match or Die Berliner Illustrier te Zeitung. From the 70’s to the 80’s, European agencies were geographically best positioned, very dynamic and powerful. They were able to expor t their economic model overseas and to put themselves ahead of the pack, dictating how the business was supposed to be conducted – sales were made mostly on the case by case basis depending on the exclusivity and/or the exceptional quality of the story.


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But when the digital era rose up, the world of photography - which was so far more like a market place than a real industry - had radically changed. The dominant position of the three “A” (Sigma, Gamma and Sipa) were challenged by their U.S competitors. The old fashioned techniques to sell pictures, which were built upon slow technologies and hand crafted negotiations, were quickly outdated by the globalization of the market and the development of fast delivery automated systems. There was no need to wait anymore, half a day to receive a picture, everything was faster and easier. For the first time in our history, photographs were made available on Internet for worldwide distribution, only minutes after they were taken. This “speed factor” combined with statistic tools and performance tracking systems allowed new development perspectives, increased efficiency and profitability. Seduced by this new sector where investment oppor tunities were suddenly huge, investors decided to position themselves in the hope to make big bucks. That oppor tunity was in fact a dream, the core reality of the business being blurred by the remains of our golden era. When Getty, Corbis and the myriad of stock photo agencies progressively appeared, the two sides of the business star ted to fight one against each other, with the consequences we know today: ultra-cheap pictures, a production based on quantity and not quality, exclusive par tnership with major publications, subscription plans and very low annual fees for unlimited licensing. Clearly, the Goliaths won the battle. But after two decades of gigantism and exponential structural growth, this model reaches the limits of sustainability. The printed press industry is severely impacted by the largest crisis in its history and photo agencies - no matter their size – are

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facing the same problems. Studies conducted by Jeff Jarvis and Clay Shirky (NYU) clearly depict a collapsing structure, where traditional revenue streams (adver tising & classified) are shifting to Internet, forcing structures like Getty or Corbis to adapt to a new environment. Despite the effor ts deployed by these structures, Shirky and Jarvis are predicting unavoidable damage for many publishers who will not shrink the size of their businesses to adapt to the digital environment. This disintegration – which, by the way will accelerate over the next decade – won’t save the world of photography and these giants who are facing the same problems: loss of income streams and increased fixed costs. This is almost an impossible equation to solve without cutting into the char ts, going back to smaller, more flexible and competitive structures. Surprisingly the reaction of these giants seems relatively measured considering the speed with which their income base is melting and the issues they face are great. Getty’s strategy for example, is buying one competitor after another, increasing the pressure on prices and stifle smaller players to recover market shares and reap new revenue. Left: Clay Shirky, professor in NYU’s graduate Interactive Telecommunications Program Right: Jeff Jarvis, associate professor and director of the interactive journalism program and the new business models for news project at the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism.

It’s just like the policy of the scorched ear th. That headlong rush seems to be pointless as the disintegration of the ecosystem becomes more and more severe. The alternative which is easier for the small structures to implement – is based on innovation that aims to change the status quo. The questioning of values and concepts that underlie the photo market should redefine our goals and practices. No one can accurately predict who will win today’s battle, but it’s safe to assume that the little ones, who survive in the end, will do better than large ones.

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Before discussing new monetization oppor tunities that open to the photo industry, we should consider how specifically ar ticulate the current market is. Photographers and agencies now essentially have a role of content provider. They yield a license to an editor or a client at a negotiated price for a specific publication or cer tain kind of use. In the case of rights-managed (RM) there are three criteria governing the calculation of a price: the nature of the media, the space occupied in the media and the audience for this media. If these criteria made sense for a very long time, they don’t respond to the reality of production anymore.

C - Economy of photojournalism

During the analog era (pre 90’s), publications were constrained by the space offered by the pagination of magazines and newspapers - finite, limited by a cer tain number of pages - and the relatively small audience that they were able to reach. These limitations have evaporated with the advent of digital technology and the Internet. The new technical constraints, infinitely more flexible, have created a kind of bottomless pit in which the boundaries of space and audience have more sense. Moreover, photography which was limited to a 2D feature opens itself enthusiastically to the video format (including motion and sound) and will cer tainly move to the 3D in the next decade, the augmented reality or even vir tualization. Yet paradoxically, we still apply to this new digital environment, traditional methods of pricing which seems inadequate to suppor t long term growth. Amazingly, the press industry and agents continue to ignore what basically constitutes the fundamental value of a photograph: the very subjective notion, yet very real quality. The added value of an image, induced by long-term involvement from the photographer in his/ her story, well documented researches or unique intellectual approaches don’t lead to


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a better monetary value of that work. Every one of us is equal in front of the system and we see our pictures published at the same rate, (which are decreasing from year to year under the pressure of content inflation) regardless of the amount effor t and the professional level we’re at. Another criteria ignored by the contemporary system, is the emergence of new delivery formats - multimedia, video - and new marketing strategies - Crossmedia, Transmedia etc.. - that defy conventions and therefore, are constantly devalued.

When the tool doesn’t fit to the thing that we measure, all deviations are possible and the credibility of all can be questioned and challenged. We must change the tool, and thereby, the way we define the term “photojournalism.”

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Redefining photojournalism brings a significant number of advances, in terms of practice, and opens the door to new opportunities for monetization. The format - generated by a tool that, in a perverse way, has defined a practice - is becoming an accessory, and its rejection in the periphery refocuses the value of photojournalism on the mastery of narrative and informative process. It recreates a new scale of values in which each production is assessed not according to a market, but according to its intrinsic value and its final expression (integrity, honesty, responsibility, ethics, accuracy, visual quality etc‌). We’re shifting from the measure of a tangible product to the evaluation of an intangible one, which implies the establishment of a new methodology and new marketing strategies to reflect those changes.

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What is referred to as photojournalism is in fact a twisted definition of its etymological meaning. Photojournalism today, means photo (photography), the two-dimensional object, in color, or black and white, in which an image was fixed. It doesn’t refer to the writing process (photo graphos) by using light to form a visual message and in our case, to create information. By broadening the perception of what photojournalism is supposed to cover, we expand its natural range of exercise to video and future visual capture tools.

A - Product & Process

Consequently, we can spare ourselves from getting stuck in an old-fashioned conservatism, which shapes the entire ecosystem created around photography from almost half a century. By opening the way, we understand the term “photojournalism”, there’s no more reason to deprive ourselves of integrating all areas of visual creation in the same activity. There’s no point to avoid the integration of new tools into our workflow and our marketing strategy. The new approach of defining what is photography, offers an oppor tunity to rethink the way we monetize our work and how we connect it with the rest of the world. Basically, the core and central value of our profession is journalism. By getting rid of the format’s dictatorship, we can embrace them all and refocus our attention on the intellectual value of the information. We can shift from the economy of product to move to an economy of process.


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This economy of “process” implies that we reinvent tools for assessing the intellectual value provided through the “repor t” and that we find a consensus about new criteria to determine a monetary value of our work, i.e.: Credibility and Authority, Ethic and Responsibility, Commitment and Quality. • Credibility and Authority: The ability of a photojournalist to build a professional identity based on the truthfulness and accuracy of the information relayed, his/her ability throughout time to provide relevant & original content. The authority – or exper tise – of the photographer in the area he/she is covering, the experience gained over the years on a par ticular topic. • Ethic and Responsibility: The ability of the photojournalist is to exercise their profession in an ethical framework, governed by the professional conventions and their consistence to follow these rules without compromising them. • Commitment and Quality: The commitment of a photojournalist in the stories he/she covers, the capability to feed the democratic debate through their work. The use of his/her skills which allows one to offer rich content and provide a clear and original point of view. This migration from the product to the process, absolutely essential, is in itself a trigger for a series of major adjustments especially when considering how to market our products.

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Photojournalism is definitively about Storytelling. The emergence of HDSLR combined with the consolidation of Internet and the development of social networks in our lives, have allowed photojournalists to switch from a linear narrative to a nonlinear one. From Newspapers and Magazines, photography has gone digital and now uses Multimedia and Web-documentaries to finally extend its sphere of influence to an ultimate form.

B - Cross & Transmedia

Therefore, the future of photojournalism cannot be considered without an enriched content or an integrated multi-platform distribution strategy, which wouldn’t be based upon the media consumption habits of the Generation Y. This is for example, the point argued by Stephen Mayes, Director of the Agency VII, and many other players from the broadcasting and new technologies worlds. Nicoletta Iacobacci, Director of the Interactive TV at the Eurovision Broadcasting Union says, “that nowadays the web allows the emergence of new multiplatform interactive and mobile contents. Today, the Media convergence and the lower production costs make the flow of content available across multiple media inevitable.“ So, what’s the difference between Crossmedia and Transmedia storytelling? Both strategies are based on multi-platform distribution. Both use the Internet as a central gathering space. In a Crossmedia strategy, the same content is distributed through various platforms (books, internet, TV, newspapers) to attract the largest audience possible. It is a 360 degrees marketing strategy, which doesn’t involve storytelling, just a de-contextualized replication of the same product everywhere. A Transmedia project develops the content across multiple platforms to generate as many different entry points in an overall narrative scheme. This is basically the modern adaptation of the concept of Gesamtkunstwerk, invented by Richard Wagner in his essay, “Ar t and Revolution”


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in 1827, which is expressed through the synthesis of works of ar t in a coherent and understandable whole embracing all ar tistic expression. This is what he called the Total Ar twork. Photographic narration is sequential. It brings us a series of events, which are supposed to be connected, but it often fails to create a bond between them and the public. We lose track of the context in which the event happens. Transmedia storytelling, whose theoretical definition is still very recent (between 1991 and 2003 according to sources), implies that different par ts of a story are told through different kind of platforms (web, film, novels, comics, exhibitions, Augmented Reality Games etc...) in a non-redundant and complementary manner. The new narrative form, implies that the web platform breaks off, and that all known materials potentially become a par t of the Transmedia story, linked together by a general context. Therefore, a Transmedia story can star t by a web documentary, and then be adapted for a TV series, then be extended through a book and finally be completed a little more through discussions on social networks, or through an application such as iPhone or Android. This fancy way to tell stories must not be seen as an absolute method which can be applied to all photojournalism work. Good stories will keep strength and relevance through a purely photographic medium. On the other hand, some stories will take advantage of a web documentary narrative style. For a fraction of them, Transmedia storytelling will bring par ticularly effective narrative mechanicals, enabling photojournalists to considerably enrich their work. As we can see, the revolution of Transmedia Storytelling has nothing to do with technologies (even if it’s largely based upon their use), but more with the appropriation of different narrative codes, through new practices and new collaborations.

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David Campbell, Professor of Cultural and Political Geography at Durham University explains in Photojournalism in the New Media Economy (Nieman Repor ts Spring 2010),

C - Publishers

Success will depend on seeing oneself as a publisher of content and a participant in a distributed story - the form which helps reshape the content of the story.

The concept isn’t new, but its adoption is still relatively rare. Everything began nearly 5 years ago with the emergence of a new breed of paparazzi agencies on the West Coast of the United States - X17 and Splash News among others - who understood very early in their development the interest of creating “magazine blogs.” Although the format was still very close to a classic blog, each one of them used it, and made extensive use of their exclusive content, and developed a Crossmedia strategy (photo, video, mobile, and print). It’s easy to see the benefits that follow from self-publication. Fur thermore, it allows greater control over the pictures and their use. It also induces a strengthening of the brand, the acquisition of new audiences, and the emergence of additional income. In the area of enter tainment, however, the picture is used more as a single shot, than a real developed story (for the rare exceptions) which limits the expression of this type of publication. In the case of photojournalism, this model extracts the photographs for the role of mere illustration and allows them to be par t of a more complex narrative flow through various media. It also allows greater control of the destination and the presentation of the final story. It eliminates the barriers of paper and offers the oppor tunity to use

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the pictures, along with videos, sounds and texts, in order to provide a deeper context and richer analysis. The multiplication of entry points - which implies a greater segmentation of the story line - enables interactivity and reconnects the documentary genre with a younger audience. The photo essay becomes a visual story and the web platform a converging point for links, comments and references, transforming the whole into a new object described by Fred Ritchin as “new Visual Journalism”. The most recent example of that is the attempt to create new spaces for pictures, initiated by agencies like VII or Magnum, or by photographers like David Allan Harvey and his web publication “Burn.”

Magnum is one of the first to have build a Multimedia Magazine platform on Internet. Despite a huge amount of traffic, it’s still unclear what the business model of “Magnum in Motion” really is.

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The outstanding issue remains obviously, the state of the oppor tunities that are linked to a revitalization of the online and offline press, as well as the dynamism of adver tisers. For now, the ways of monetization for the photojournalism industry is hardly obvious, but are wor th exploring fur ther.

D - Monetization

Adver tising will still be for the next couple of years the predominant model to finance web publications. Even if the entire ecosystem struggles to find its balance, encouraging signs are showing that the adver tising revenue is a promising model on Internet, as it will surpass the print adver tising revenues in 2011. With that said, we really need to consider the new oppor tunities in that domain and promote the adoption of new technologies. The recent advent of tools such as Embedar ticle.com – which allows embedding Ads banners with a picture - can inspire us to reconsider the relationship between the user and the image, avoiding the trap of creative commons, while preserving freedom of private use and ensuring the viability of the creation. The funding of photo agencies’ web magazines implies more classical methods of monetization including adver tisement placement or targeted marketing. It’s wor th noting that the rise of social networking and SMO (social media optimization) will empower any kind of platform, even the smallest one, to build a solid community, which could be later monetized through adver tising. Crowdfunding will also play a bigger role in the next few months for photojournalism’s funding as “Emphas.is” – a platform similar to Spot.us, founded by established and world-renown photojournalists – will be launched at the beginning of 2011.

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Other tools like Kickstar ter.com or Ulule.com already encourage private fundraising (crowdfunding), opening new horizons for independent professionals and for truly par ticipatory media. From B2B content provider, we’re moving to a more public and opened space to engage ourselves in a co-producing relation with the audience. This is a paradigm shift we need not be afraid of. We’ve been kept away from the people we’re supposed to talk to for too long now, and it’s time to engage in a more direct and frank dialog with them. The interagency co-production, the sponsorship deals or the backing with nonprofit structures will also be some of the main promising solutions to develop financially sustainable structures. Progressively, modern agencies or collectives will have to think of the development of third par ty services (training, outsourcing, or consulting exper tise) premium subscription to access an exclusive content, or products sales to stabilize their resources and develop their business. Last but not least, the rise of the tablet market, combined with the “All publishers” strategy and new products, such as the InDesign Publishing suite edited by Adobe, gives to any collective or agency the chance to publish dedicated apps on the iPad and the for thcoming Android tablets for a very small entry fee. This should also be a powerful leverage to reach a new public and gain new revenues to produce more great stories without worrying if, when, and where they will be published. As you guessed it, the capital words here are “innovation” and “experimentation.”

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The year 2011 shouldn’t be seen as the year when photojournalism died – again – but as a year of oppor tunity and courage. A year where a new generation of photojournalists, young professionals, all sharing a common digital background would be able to create the next “Gamma” or “Sygma” or some kind of “Viva agency 2.0” if you will.

The year 2011 should be considered as the first year of a rebirth for photojournalism, the first step which will take us on the path of recovery. I’m sure there’s plenty of guys out there excited at the idea of taking a fresh approach and engaging in new challenges. It’s time to shift, it’s time to let go the so called “Golden age,” we are going to create our “Golden age”, and we just have to believe in it!

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Microstock - 20,000,000 Alamy - 19,270,000 Shutterstock - 11,332,581 Fotolia - 9,056,403

ImageShack - 20 billion Facebook - 15 billion Photobucket - 8.2 billion Flickr - 4 billion

= 47 billion

Dreamstime - 8,556,710 iStockphoto - 6,837,000 Newscom - 40,000,000 Reuters - 25,000,000 Getty Images - 8,500,000 AFP - 8,000,000

= 173 million

DPA - 7,500,000 AP - 6,000,000 Corbis - 4,000,000 Bloomberg - 290,000 Shared pictures Licensed Pictures

Src: Blackstar rising


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Bio This e-book is published by Gerald Holubowicz, NYC 2010. Text © Gerald Holubowicz 2010 License Creative Commons

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Sortir du cadre

I’m a French freelance photojournalist based in New York since 2006, specializing in news, portraits and event imagery. After studying Law and Journalism in France, I worked with the photo agency Abaca Press as staff photographer for almost 3 years in the 2nd largest city of France. I used to cover major French political rally, the last presidential campaign, social and economic news as well as entertainment events. In September 2006, I moved to New York and, after a brief stint with Abaca USA and Gamma Press, joined Polaris Images as Contributing Photographer for two years. I covered the U.N General Assemblies, the Pope visit in New York, the economic crisis and Wall Street, the Presidential Campaign, and a lot of Movie Premiere amid a lot of other different stories. My work has been published in the main magazines and websites in USA such as Life, Business Week, Sport Illustrated, Newsweek, Portfolio, Vanity Fair, the New York Magazine, Rolling Stones, Us Weekly, In Touch, and several other publications in the world. I spent the last five years working as news photographer, looking every day for the best story and the best way to report it. I love the perfect shot, the very famous “instant décisif” invented by Cartier Bresson, my eye has been influenced by his sense of sharpness and geometry. I’m always looking for the neatest composition, working mainly with ambient light to preserve the atmosphere of my subject. I balance my work, between news and long term stories, in order to develop a narrative construction adapted to new tools like multimedia productions. This work gave me experience and knowledge. It made me a versatile photographer, comfortable in various circumstances, ready for new challenges. As a responsible professional, I also try to contribute to a better understanding of this industry and its improvement. In the series “Sortir du Cadre” (Think outside the box) I explore the economy of the new media and the photo industry, looking for the new opportunities offered to our generation and analyzing the different economic models we could or should embrace to significantly change the status quo. To me, future of photojournalism is brighter than ever and I’m deeply committed to find the possible exit strategies ahead of us.


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www.gholubowicz.com www.o2creation.org twitter @gholubowicz

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Sortir du cadre

Sortir du Cadre (Think Wider) Future of photojournalism - Eng  

Sortir du Cadre is a series of posts written about future of photojournalism.

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