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Photo spots for sale....
Ian Halperin, Photographer
Plano(Dallas) | TX | USA | Posted: 9:39 AM on 11.16.05

According to the story this trend is growing;

"The Bruins are the latest Boston team to add up-close-and-personal seating in an effort to pump up the bottom line. The Sox plunked new field boxes on the first- and third-base lines and the Celtics moved some press seats and added courtside cribs. Last season the Patriots test drove on-field boxes along the sidelines but they didn’t get permission from the NFL to market them."
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Dave Rossman, Photographer
Houston | TX | USA | Posted: 10:01 AM on 11.16.05
->> Remember Ian,


Consider the photo spots as great real estate and the teams are the government using imminent domain to relocate you. It costs the team nothing to have you shoot from somewhere else but they lose ($5000 in the Boston case) if they don't sell those up front seats.

I'm actually surprised it took this long. Before you know it all the rich folks will be on the sidelines and we will shooting from the luxury boxes.
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Greg Bartram, Photographer
Dublin | OH | USA | Posted: 11:21 AM on 11.16.05
->> Freaking lovely. Decent spots to shoot the NHL are tough enough to come up with at a heavily-covered game as it is.

Thanks, y'all.

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Grace Chiu, Photographer
Toronto | ON | CANADA | Posted: 2:35 AM on 11.29.05
->> I'm in LA to recuperate from the World Gymnastics Championships in Melbourne, Oz.

The photo positions there were pretty bad. It is getting worse every world championships -- I will save that diatribe for another time...

On the first day of competition, men's qualifying subdivision 1, I took up a reserved photographer position in the stands that was beside some stairs with a railing on the other side, so the seat was in its own row. It was not a good spot because there were a lot of delegation/workforce people crossing by to get on & off the competition floor during the competition, yet it was a relatively central position with facial vantages to athletes competing on all six apparatus.

After that first subdivision, the photo manager notified me that the seat had been sold to a spectator for $500 for the remainder of the championships (5.666 more days)!! I was obviously exasperated.

There weren't any other photo seats allocated anywhere nearby. The photo manager proudly announced that some more seats were opened up at the top of the concourse. Yeah, right, no 600mm/f2.8 lens. No CPS. No rentals. No floor-level pool rotations. Bad. Bad. Bad.

It's getting to be that non-pool photographers will have to buy their own seats to secure their shooting positions. $500 is still less than the $5000+ it costs to cut out the backgrounds of all the shots in a gymnastics magazine taken from a crappy position.

The sadness of this all is that this setup is going to be the same for the Commonwealth Games gymnastics in March. Same venue, but sold out. Same bad deal.

The photo manager later said, not in an apologetic way, that it was a mistake. Unclear on whether that means that the photo positions will be sold or not in March ...
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Will Powers, Photographer
Phoenix | AZ | USA | Posted: 9:31 AM on 11.29.05
->> Four pool photographers should be able to cover any NFL game, don't ya think?
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Andy Mead, Photographer, Photo Editor
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 10:51 AM on 11.29.05
->> Grace, what do you mean by "cut out the backgrounds"?
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Michael Hickey, Photographer
Kokomo | IN | United States | Posted: 11:08 AM on 11.29.05
->> College basketball venues are quickly selling up floor seats that used to go to photographers for a couple of years now. It's almost impossible to get a credential at Indiana University unless you're the local paper or AP.
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Tom Ervin, Photographer
Palm Beach | FL | USA | Posted: 11:30 AM on 11.29.05
->> It will be like those press conferences. Eventually the photogrpahers will be assigned to the back of the auditorium near the bathrooms.
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Brad Wilder, Photographer, Assistant
Lexington | Ky | USA | Posted: 2:08 PM on 11.29.05
->> Like Michael said, college basketball is doing the same. Kentucky now has seats in what used to be the second row for photo on one end of the court.
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Andy Mead, Photographer, Photo Editor
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 3:18 PM on 11.29.05
->> Sorry for my previous off-topic post, but I digress.

Some soccer teams are now selling "behind the signboard" seating that is tradionally available to photographers.

But frankly, I can't really blame the teams. It's all about revenue streams, and all but on the court seating can definitely command a high ticket price.

My one question about basketball, though, is are these former photo positions among the ones I'm used to watching players land on when diving/getting knocked out of bounds? I wonder if there's a ticking time bomb of litigation when a "fan" gets maimed at a basketball or football game. Or a multi-million dollar/year athlete's career gets shortened due to a collision with a fan in an area that was formally either empty or filled with cameramen.
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Jamie Rhodes, Photographer
Louisville | KY | United States | Posted: 6:31 PM on 11.29.05
->> The University of Louisville has been doing this for years in Freedom Hall for basketball. There are only 4 positions available across from the home bench (these were banned during one game this season by an over zealous ref.) If it's a big game (and the visitors bring their cheerleaders) there might be room 8-9 photographers in the front row and 2-3 in the second row on the visitors end. To make things worse, the team benches may not be big enough to hold all of the visiting players and one or two of them will sit on the floor taking up at least one shooters position on the 1st and 2nd rows. Keep in mind that Louisville has been in the top 10 at some point in the season the last three years. I'm guessing that they think they don't need the extra print coverage in comparisson to the revenue that they get from the floor seating. Of course, the seats are always filled with fans who are willing to have a player dive into their laps or over them for a loose ball.
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Ron Scheffler, Photographer
Hamilton (Toronto area) | Ontario | Canada | Posted: 8:52 PM on 11.29.05
->> I can understand this happening with hockey, basketball and even baseball... but with football, field level seating is the last place a spectator wants to be if he/she actually wants to see the game.

How many games have we all been to where the halftime performers, etc. are seated off to the side of the field? Watching them every so often during the game, you can tell that they are frustrated by the bad sightlines. Meanwhile they're probably thinking to themselves that being on the field sure sounded better at the beginning of the game... Imagine the complaints if they actually paid hundreds of dollars each for those seats? There are too many photographers, videographers, officials, etc. in the way... Oh but wait, maybe Will is right, and four photographers is enough - one in each corner... that would clear up the sidelines real fast.

FedEx Field (Redskins) is an example of where the front row seating has been extended down to the point where there is maybe two or three feet of working space in the end zones. Though it does create an inadvertent benefit - that you get nice out of focus fans in the background when shooting down the field, rather than a wall with adverts on it.
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Thread Title: Photo spots for sale....
Thread Started By: Ian Halperin
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