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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

NCAA Basketball Tournament.
Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 8:24 PM on 03.18.08
->> I've received numerous emails from photographers covering the NCAA basketball tournament asking some basic questions.

Each regional site is run by a designated SID and how he manages his arena is up to him ... though the NCAA sends out a "bible" that dictates pretty specifically how the media and photographers are to work.

So in order of how I received the questions:
- Photo positions are PREASSIGNED by the site SID. These positions are mapped out by the NCAA's tournament bible.

- Remotes are not allowed on the basket or supports. Floor remotes are sometimes discouraged, but IF they are allowed, they must have a photographer behind it to move it when necessary.

- Overhead remotes (from the catwalk) generally must be installed the day before the first game and approved by the site SID or his/her assistant. (Sometimes they will allow access to the catwalk the day of a game, but the rules spell out that remotes must be installed 24 hours in advance and approved.)

- Strobe lighting is installed by SI and the 3 sets are managed by SI or their designate. Contact SI's Porter Binks asap if you want to get on the lights and find out the cost involved.

- There are two rows of baseline photo positions. Second row can sit on a very low box so they can see over the front row photographers. (Don't bring barstools, large camping-type chairs or tall equipment cases to sit on. If you block someone behind you, your chair/box/case will be removed so then you're stuck sitting on the floor.)

- Photographers CAN NOT run onto the floor of the arena to shoot jube/deject. I repeat: Photographers CAN NOT run onto the floor of the arena to shoot jube/deject. You don't want to pull a stunt like this:
http://www.sportsshooter.com/news/1553

- You should have received details on Internet access with your credential confirmation from the NCAA. Usually any free wifi/Internet access that may be available usually in a venue is shutdown or inaccessible. The NCAA wants to make some money off of you for using the Internet to transmit. There may be some arenas where the free public wifi is still available, but if not ... you have been warned.

- A few of you asked if Canon and Nikon will be at any tournament sites or the Final Four to provide loaner gear and repairs. I have not heard anything about Canon's plans, but I have not seen them at any previous NCAA events. I have heard that Nikon will have tech reps and loaner gear at the Sweet 16 sites. But check with NPS directly if you want this confirmed.

That's all I got.

Those of you whose home arena is playing host to tournament games ... PLEASE UPDATE INFO IN THE GUIDE here at ss.com. Please list media entrance details, parking and most importantly available light info. (For those going to the Honda Center in Anaheim... yes it is a dark-ass cave. I'm bringing my 85 1.8 and 200 1.8 just in case!)

Those covering the Final Four in San Antonio, check out Porter's piece we published prior to last year's Final Four:
http://www.sportsshooter.com/news/1726

Good look. And good shooting!

Mahalo!

Hanashiro
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William Luther, Photographer
San Antonio | TX | USA | Posted: 9:25 PM on 03.18.08
->> Thanks for the update Robert.

Let me jump in with some news from San Antonio...

I'm not sure how many -- if any -- photographers will be staying at the brand-new Grand Hyatt hotel downtown. The hotel is behind schedule for opening and has been behind for months. Here's a story from our paper with the latest.

http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA031808.01A.GrandHyattOpe...

The hotel is going to be open. They have no choice. But if you are staying there, anticipate problems.

As of yesterday a person walking by the place would have no idea the hotel was opening in just a matter of days. As of today, not a single room has been occupied. The first night for actual guests will be Wednesday March 19. And then, as the above story notes, a large group will check in on March 25.

Hopefully this means that a lot of the kinks will be worked out by the time the Final Four gets here. But the hotel will still be brand new and it will be the first time it will be booked to capacity.

So expect some glitches. And remember...it's not the housekeeper's fault or the bellman's fault or the hotel restaurant waitress's fault. So tip them an extra dollar and remember that you'll be covering the Final Four while they are probably going to be getting screamed at by some drunk guy who's pissed it took a half an hour to get extra towels for the pool or lectured by some alumni about how much better the Marriott was when they went to the last Final Four.

Let me know if y'all have any questions.

William
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George Bridges, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 9:47 PM on 03.18.08
->> A couple additions to Robert's notes on the NCAA rules.

This year, remotes along the baseline where the photographers sit must be on a floor plate, no table-top tripods.

Remotes must be behind the photographers' line. Not more putting an inside remote in front of the line in front of the photographer sitting all the way inside. These remotes must be behind the line and you need to get permission of the photographer sitting in that box to put a remote in there with them.

As in the past, remotes under the press tables must be approved by the on-site photo coordinator to make sure they do not stick too far out from the drapery or interfere in any way. NCAA rules say no more than 4 inches in front of the draping.

The height limit for seats for photographers on the second row is 9 inches. Front row photographers, obviously, must be on the floor with no elevation.
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Mark Buffalo, Photographer
Lonoke | AR | USA | Posted: 9:59 PM on 03.18.08
->> I won't be shooting the tourney in North Little Rock, Ark., but I will be writing for my papers. Yeah, I multi task.

So, if anyone here shows up in LR, holler at me through my member page.

Mark
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 10:01 PM on 03.18.08
->> William ...Not sure which is the main media media hotel but when we received our credential confirmations a couple of months back we were instructed to make our own hotel reservations (@ the Marriott River Walk)...which was change. Normally we reserve through the NCAA?

Anyway...we all know sports writers want to be in Marriotts in NBA-NFL-MLB circles it's like an inside joke. All sports writers are "Marriott Points W****s". (I know I am.)
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William Luther, Photographer
San Antonio | TX | USA | Posted: 10:50 PM on 03.18.08
->> Late Tuesday evening there is now more bad news for the Hyatt hotel:

http://www.mysanantonio.com/business/stories/MYSA031808.hyattdelay.EN.39f23...

Basically the story says the opening date has been pushed back to this Saturday.

Again, I don't think anyone with reservations there should panic. Like I said before, there is nowhere else to put everyone coming to town, so the hotel will have to be open. I'm sure local officials are working frantically behind the scenes to make sure the building gets all of its permits.

I'm just saying to be prepared for problems.
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George Bridges, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 9:18 AM on 03.19.08
->> The two media hotels are the Marriott Riverwalk (main hotel) and the La Quinta Suites -- Convention Center (secondary). The Marriott has been around for many years and the La Quinta is recently remodeled and expanded (from what I've been told). For those organizations watching their budgetary waistline, the La Quinta is cheaper each night as well.

Both are downtown and a couple of blocks from each other. The La Quinta is a little closer to the dome but not by much.

The reservations are still made through the NCAA. Your credential confirmation e-mail has a link to put you into the hotel's media block of rooms at the NCAA rate. The confirmation e-mail you get after booking is actually from the NCAA media team. I'm not sure when the NCAA went to this system but is at least for the last couple of years.

Of course, now it is all wait-and-see for which teams make it and it will be a last-minute scramble for booking rooms.
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Tom Knier, Photographer
Lancaster | PA | USA | Posted: 9:37 AM on 03.19.08
->> I stayed at that San Antonio Mariott covering the Alamo Bowl over the new year.

VERY slow ethernet in the rooms. Might wanna look for other places to transmit if you're on a tight deadline. (Heck, I think the wireless in the lobby area is faster.)
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William Luther, Photographer
San Antonio | TX | USA | Posted: 10:15 AM on 03.19.08
->> Yes, the LaQuinta -- which by the way was the location of the very first LaQuinta hotel -- was torn down and completely rebuilt 2-3 years ago.

Both hotel are within walking distance of each other.
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 5:36 PM on 03.19.08
->> does anyone know who the SID is for the Raleigh, N.C., regional?

thanks,

marc
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Jason Ivester, Photographer
Springdale | AR | USA | Posted: 8:22 PM on 03.19.08
->> Marc,
I may be mistaken but it should be either Annabelle Vaughn Myers or Brian Reinhardt.

-jason
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 9:05 PM on 03.19.08
->> The host school and conference is the place to start.
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 9:15 PM on 03.19.08
->> Just got back from Anaheim...

They had to "re-draw" the photo positions on one end of the floor because they were off by several feet, so the three inside spots were pretty well blocked by the post. (Thanks Roberto Beck!)

Light was as bad as ever: ASA1600 1/500 @ 2.8 MIIn) at the top of the key. A 1/2 to 1 stop drop under the hoop and in the corners.

Also note: Even if you have lights installed in the arena for the regular season you do not necessarily get to use those strobes automatically. Following the NCAA guidelines, you must inform the site SID and also attend the "strobe test" the day before the first game (in Anaheim that was 3:15pm today).

We had questions in Anaheim because the two local papers have strobes in the arena to cover the Ducks ... but they had not informed the site SID (nor the building's person in charge of the strobes). The site SID was going to cut them slack and allow them on the lights if they attended the 3:15pm strobe test. Some SID's might not be so forgiving.

When the NCAA rolls into town and takes over "your building" things might and will change. So you have to be patient and you have to ask the question. Don't assume.

Should be a fun "March Madness" ... see you in Anaheim ... or San Antonio!

Mahalo!
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 9:17 PM on 03.19.08
->> Those going to San Antonio for the Final Four... I was informed that Nikon will be there.

Contact NPS directly to get details on location and services they will be offering.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 10:12 PM on 03.19.08
->> what about the women? you guys are showing no love for the women's tourney....sadness...sadness
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Allen Hubbard, Photographer
Spokane | WA | USA | Posted: 3:15 AM on 03.20.08
->> Chuck,
I am in Spokane waiting to see who is here for Womens West Regional and try to hire on.
My old haunt (Gonzaga is back there with you).

I do have a question, I see several posts (classifieds) where folks are stating they are already credentialed (even before Selection Sunday) at a certain arena and available for work. When I contacted the host schools person in charge of media credentials I was informed that the NCAA will not credential a freelancer unless it is requested through a specific University who will be playing at that location. So how can these people be credentialed already for freelance work? Or am I getting bad info here?
When I was with Gonzaga there was never a problem and when the 1st and 2nd round games are here it works because I can contact all the SID's on Selection Sunday to hire. But with this site being a regional it's going to be hard to catch the right people between trips and have them arrange credentials still. Any thoughts on this one?
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 3:32 AM on 03.20.08
->> The other thing to keep in mind ... you usually can only shoot for the entity that credentialed you.

In other word, being credentialed for USA TODAY I can't turn around and say shoot for the Visalia Times-Delta.

The NCAA (and most other leagues, teams, sports, et al) want to control who has access to cover their event and turning around and selling photos directly to an entity other than what you're credentialed for is not allowed.

It happens all of the time ... as you say just look at the ss.com classified ads ... but it's generally not permitted by rules.

Just look at the back of a credential for any major pro or college sports and there is language restricting secondary use of some kind.

And yes, as you said, generally the NCAA and pro sports won't credential a freelancer unless they have a specific publication that has assigned them.

When in doubt of the rules, just check the back of the credential ... you will be surprised what you find written and what restrictions and limitation you've agreed to by accepting that credential.

It's why my paper and most other major media organizations are fighting the new MLB credential use agreement.

Good luck!

Mahalo!
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Ian Halperin, Photographer
Plano(Dallas) | TX | USA | Posted: 7:52 AM on 03.20.08
->> Allen,
The NCAA allows for locals to be credantiales by the hosting group so the SID photographer for the host school could be in, reguardless of teams, as could other local shooters, known to the host. But the rules Robert pointed out still technically apply.
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Allen Hubbard, Photographer
Spokane | WA | USA | Posted: 1:08 PM on 03.20.08
->> Thanks Ian,
The media person (in charge of credentials) at the host school was very rude. Looks like my options will be limited to calling SID's after the four teams coming here are determined.

Thanks Again Ian and Robert
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Ian Halperin, Photographer
Plano(Dallas) | TX | USA | Posted: 7:48 PM on 03.20.08
->> Allen,
The host SID usually keeps a list of photographers to refer the competing school's SID to. If you get on that list, you will be ahead of the game. But what has been said above is true...that SID will need to make the credentail request for you. They usually have a two or three days to make the request.

Good Luck!
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 12:56 AM on 03.21.08
->> the NCAA wants $350 for a data ethernet line for round one and round two of the NCAA Tournament in Raleigh, N.C. (from what i hear this goes for all sites, not just Raleigh). i also hear it goes up much higher when teams reach the Final Four. oh and photographers are not allowed access to the wireless network, which is open to sportswriters for $16.95 per day. apparently photographers use too much "bandwidth" to transmit a half dozen photos from the games. gee, what a bargain.

marc
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Mark Buffalo, Photographer
Lonoke | AR | USA | Posted: 7:21 PM on 03.21.08
->> Marc, I'm standing in for Harry King for our company in NLR and I'm bored not being able to shoot. And when I ordered our internet, I accidentally ordered hard-wired and had to call the NCAA and get it changed.

Hope things are going well there. Tell Harry hi!

Mark
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 8:08 PM on 03.21.08
->> yeah marc, this is old news. the ncaa has been getting away with this nonsense for years. they even make arenas who have their OWN free wi-fi disable it for the tourney so they can bleed the papers dry. think about my paper. the rbc center is where we cover hockey and nc state basketball all season and then the ncaa comes in and wants to charge $350. and it gets better....we're covering four different teams...do the math on that... that's $1400 a round...I'm in virginia at a woman's 1st and second round and luckily the games are going to be early enough that I won't have to fork over any dough to those greedy bastards. I think the answer would be to have a high speed data card like sprint or something to that effect to by-pass the ncaa. the sad thing is I bet if anyone did any real checking the writer's line is the same as the photo line....
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 8:09 PM on 03.21.08
->> Dude, Internet access at events is just the C.O.B. The organization that is putting on the event sees the opportunity to make some $$$ and they have us over a barrel.

I just looked at our bill for the Grammy Awards... Staples Center charged us $900 for a DSL line.

The Super Bowl is notorious for charging exorbitant amounts of money for high-speed date service. Thousands for a simple DSL line.

Yes, we do eat up a lot of bandwidth (you only send 6 photos from an NCAA game???). We cannot deny that. And yes charging sports writers $16 while photographers are charged 20-times that sure seems unfair.

One thing that this has the potential of doing is pricing out small organizations (or those with small budgets).

Needless to say, many organizations have complained about the cost these events charge for data service. But as I said, they have us over a barrel.

Until cellular data service becomes more reliable at events, we will have to bite the bullet ... and keep raising the issue with event organizers.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 8:32 PM on 03.21.08
->> bert, I agree it's the cost of doing business and when I think of the money YOU guys have to spend covering every site....well, it's probably more than some small countries operating budget for the year. I just think it sucks when the same data lines are free all year long and the ncaa comes in and wants money for something they don't even install...I mean it's not like they're going broke...look how much cbs pays for the rights to broadcast these games....that was my point.
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 8:41 PM on 03.21.08
->> On using something like a Verizon data service at an event ... sometimes the throughput can be pretty good. But most of the time, it is extremely slow.

Last night at the Honda Center, some photographers there using Verizon data in the workroom (3 or 4 bars signal strength) the upload speed was a blazing 10-12k.

I think a few guys went outside the building hoping to get faster upload speed.

Before the arena opened, the upload speed was the usual ... not super-fast, but pretty good.

Sprint data was a bit faster. But most have Verizon.

You really cannot count on using something like Verizon service at a big event like the NCAA Tournament.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 8:48 PM on 03.21.08
->> I have found at big arenas just making a friggin phone call to the desk is almost impossible at times with all the RF running around....yeah, you gotta be VERY brave to go in thinking you could get all your work done with your cell phone or data card. I'm not brave. I need my job. I don't want to make my cats have to panpawdle on the side of the road for food. 8)
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George Bridges, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 8:56 PM on 03.21.08
->> ---i also hear it goes up much higher when teams reach the Final Four.---

Much, much higher. DSL is around twice what is being charged at the regionals and a drop on the building's really fast pipe is even more.

Writers actually get it even cheaper. If ordered before the practice day of the regionals the wireless for writers is about $10 a day.

As Bert said, we have to get access and right now cell data networks are not reliable so we pay what they say. The thing that gets me is that you know writers are going to be uploading lots of audio and even their own pictures and simple video for blogs. Probably more bandwidth than some photographers would use.

I do know that the company that the NCAA uses to deal with the buildings on data issues has fought to keep the costs down. The rates are not as low as we like, but also not as high as the facilities want to charge.

But, until things change greatly in the access areas, we will pay it because we have to in order to get images out to clients.
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David Guralnick, Photographer
Detroit | MI | USA | Posted: 12:27 AM on 03.22.08
->> Anyone coming to Detroit for the Sweet Sixteen? Not sure where they are setting up the photo work room at Ford Field, but if it's the same as where they put us for the NFL games then cell service is horrible. It's a concrete bunker and the signal just doesn't get through.
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 1:52 AM on 03.22.08
->> Just an FYI:

From the NCAA's telcomm rate card for Internet data service:
http://www.sportssystems.com/clients/NCAAData/
1st/2nd round:
Hard-Wire Data Service ($350)
A high speeed hard-wired data connection is available to photographers and photo agencies in the digital photo work area. Fee includes a connection to one computer only.

Regionals:
Hard-Wire Data Service ($350)
A high speeed hard-wired data connection is available to photographers and photo agencies in the digital photo work area. Fee includes a connection to one computer only.

Final Four:
Hard-Wire Data Service ($1,000)
A high-speeed hard-wired data connection is available to photographers and photo agencies in the digital photo work area. Fee includes a connection to one computer only.

The above is directly from the NCAA rate card (link included). I heard there are a couple of options for photographers at the FF ... DSL (which was slightly cheaper) and part of a T-XXX pipe ($1,000 but the NCAA telecom was not forthcoming with the number of entities using this pipe so the actual speed is somewhat of a mystery at the moment).

You always have to be a little dubious when an event offers to piece off a part of a T-XXX line for media Internet. If an organization is hooking up 10 computers and moving hundred of photos and an organization is moving video and audio and several dozens more are surfing the web ... what sounded like a big pipe might be pretty darn slow. Especially if you're paying $1,000!

Also note that the NCAA's pricing is for ONE computer for the hardwired Internet. I saw a couple of organizations in Anaheim using their own hubs to connect more than one laptop ... fortunately the site's "telecom police" were not checking around for routers. I have been at events where they have checked for how many computers were using the line and wanted to charge more(!!!) ... generally they are good about this.

The "good old days" of tapping into a free charge-a-call POTs line in the media workroom and transmitting (analog) for free are long gone...
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 3:09 AM on 03.22.08
->> bert,

my half dozen remark was a ballparkish figure. i filed 10 photos today for my paper. i have a list of photos to fill for the game stories that are written (we have three writers at the tournament) as well as a few news features. i do file additional photos later that don't need to be in for next day publication.

as for the NCAA and the $350 they want for a data line. i still got my photos in by deadline and didn't have to throw down the ridiculous $350 for the NCAA's ethernet line.

marc
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Mark Smith, Photographer
Elk City | OK | USA | Posted: 5:48 AM on 03.22.08
->> Someone please correct me when/if I'm wrong.

I don't understand why the NCAA charges if the venue is who is paying for the infrastructure.

If I'm shooting at a facility who has wifi and they have the bandwidth to accomodate me, why should the NCAA come and rob me. $350? Yeah, that pretty much hammers me. I'm sure it means less to the people with big budgets, but on a gig like mine, it makes it much less profitable.

I'm like Marc, I still got my photos transmitted for immediate use and got to another wifi for the rest, but I just don't understand charging for infrastructure the NCAA doesn't own.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 8:23 AM on 03.22.08
->> mark, I don't wanna sound like a smart ass but all you have to know to answer your question are four letters...."NCAA"......that should explain everything to ya. here's an example. two weeks ago the ACC women's tourney in GBORO. datalines. free.
internet.....most of the time very very fast. next week. east regional in GBORO..those same lines (because, no the NCAA won't be dragging in new ethernet cables) will be $350. as bert says. it's a fact of life and until we get some kind of new xmission option to by-pass the stranglehold the NCAA has on telecommunications we're screwed..those of us on deadlines I mean.
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 10:39 AM on 03.22.08
->> chuck,

i don't think you're being a smartass. you're just stating facts. i too have been at other non-NCAA championships in the past (including the SEC Tournament last week and the Cotton Bowl earlier this year) which have offered free wireless.

it just burns me, as i know it does you and others as well, that the NCAA forces this glad-handed extortion on us. you'd think for a $350 data line your photos would move instantaneously, but in fact the speed of the lines here in Raleigh are no faster than the wireless that writers are paying $16.95 a day for.

i called the NCAA's technical services phone number and challenged the representative to justify the ridiculous cost for their data line. after debunking a list of excuses the representative admitted she didn't know why the NCAA charges what they charge.

so you're right chuck, it's the NCAA. i guess that's all that needs to be said.

marc
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 11:37 AM on 03.22.08
->> It's the good old American business model: MONOPOLY.

Trust us guys, we've been asking about this for years and it's always finger pointing the other way. It's like an Abbott and Costello routine: When you ask the building, they says "It's the NCAA." When you ask the NCAA, they'll say "Our hands are tied."

The NCAA (and big business in general) over-charge for services BECAUSE THEY CAN.

Competition (i.e. another method to move data that bypasses the services the NCAA charges for) would be the only way to drive down the price. But until there is a reliable, fast way to upload our images on location, the NCAA, NFL, the Grammys, the Academy Awards, etc. can essentially charge us whatever the heck they feel like.

I don't like it and my bosses at USA TODAY certainly don't. As I said above, this will drive away small publications and those with limit budgets. Heck, even large papers feel the crunch and I can see a day when only the likes of the AP and Getty having the financial resources to pay these huge fees for services at venues.

I remember years ago walking into our trailer in the media compound at the Super Bowl to meet the technician that was going to install our DSL line (which probably cost us $1500). Another organization was on the opposite side of the trailer and a photographer told me they had bypassed the NFL and had somehow gotten a company into the media compound to install a satellite Internet system for them. While the upload speed was not very fast (probably 256-400 kpbs) they got it relatively cheap.

But the dish was spotted and a couple of days before the game someone came in to ask about it. I don't remember exactly what happened but they tried to shut it down but couldn't.

There has been organizations that have discussed pooling their Internet connection and sharing the cost. But the event organizers and the the service providers have gotten around this by either banning putting the connection on a wi-fi hub and/or charging for each computer hooked up to the system over one (like the NCAA is doing at the tournament sites). Organizations still do it and I haven't seen service providers going around looking for hubs and routers. But you never know.

When high-speed wireless data networks become more reliable and we don't have the annoying drop in speeds because every yahoo in the arena is on their cellphone screaming "Dude I'm at (insert event here)!!!" or "texting" their girlfriends --- we'll be at the mercy of the NCAA, NFL, NBA, local venue, et al.

It's nice to bitch about this but it's like bitching about gasoline being $4 a gallon.
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George Bridges, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 11:38 AM on 03.22.08
->> When the NCAA comes in they take over the building. Internet access, in building-parking, concessions (no beer) all is run by the NCAA.

The pipe in San Antonio is supposed to be a 25mb line so it should be fast enough for a lot of folks. Atlanta was a similar set up and the lines were extremely fast.

The cost for initial connection is $1,000 with $100 for each additional computer you want to put on the network. As Bert said, I don't know if they will be checking. A lot of places do not but I remember the Final Four in Atlanta several years ago (not this past one) where they came by and said you have X number of computers on the connection and you owe us $600 for each one. Luckily a compromise was worked out.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 3:52 PM on 03.22.08
->> "gasoline's $4 a gallon? no it's not!"-- george bush, last week.
couldn't resist that bert...and george, that "no beer" thingy is what is the
real problem with the NCAA. I'm just going to send my photos via smoke signal.
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George Bridges, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 9:56 PM on 03.22.08
->> Chuck, the no beer thing was really rough here in DC because as we would walk out the tunnel to the court we could see the bar reserved for the big ticket holders to Washington Wizards games. The bar and glass-door refrigerator were covered but you could still see the beer locked inside just taunting us.

The charge for Internet may have been $350 but at least there was free ice cream in the media room. So at least we had that going for us.

A season or two ago the NBA mandated that all arenas have free wi-fi available for the media and I think MLB has the same policy. Maybe one day the NCAA will do the same.
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Pat Christman, Photographer
Mankato | MN | USA | Posted: 10:06 PM on 03.22.08
->> Time to dust off the film gear and hire a photo runner?

While I don't shoot the NCAA tourney, the situation at the WCHA Final Five was similar: $175 for an Internet connection I need for 5 minutes. I'm not looking to download 4GB of porn, I just wanna do my job.

Tell you what, maybe if we all tell these event organizers we won't eat their catered meal (shouldn't be too hard) and don't go to their media banquets and that they don't have to print me out a stat sheet every 5 minutes, can they provide me with what I REALLY need to do my job, Internet and a space to use it in?

Sounds way to simple, doesn't it? In all seriousness, I agree that until an alternative is found things probably will not change. It's the American way: why give away something when you can make money off of it? Photographers, as a whole, are probably some of the best problem solvers I know. If there's a way, we'll find it.

WiFi = manilla envelope + intern + fast car
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Mike Morelock, Photographer
Greenwood | AR | USA | Posted: 5:14 PM on 03.23.08
->> So much for photogs not rushing the floor. They were all over the floor just now trying to get to Stephen Curry after Davidson knocked off Georgetown.
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Andy Altenburger, Photographer
Tiffin | OH | USA | Posted: 5:15 PM on 03.23.08
->> - Photographers CAN NOT run onto the floor of the arena to shoot jube/deject. I repeat: Photographers CAN NOT run onto the floor of the arena to shoot jube/deject. You don't want to pull a stunt like this:

http://www.sportsshooter.com/news/1553


I think more than a couple missed the memo for the Davidson/Georgetown game. Counted about 4 photogs on the court when they first panned to Davidson guys on the court.
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | US | Posted: 5:18 PM on 03.23.08
->> Funny...as soon as I saw that I sent a text message to a buddy of mine (that was covering the game) to confirm his identity as a court rusher :)
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Tom Morris, Photographer
West Monroe | LA | USA | Posted: 7:40 PM on 03.23.08
->> Yeah, Pat, envelopes+runner+Starbucks! Aren't they everywhere now????
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 9:47 PM on 03.23.08
->> yeah, I was watching the game here in norfolk with another staffer, a davidson grad btw, and we both looked at each other and said.."WTF? why are those guys out there? that's against the rules." and we know who you guys are. I'm really really sorry. I don't care if it's YOUR team and you get excited in a big upset. there is NO excuse for breaking the rules and screwing it up for everyone else. hope they pull your credentials for the next round.
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Dan Powers, Photographer
Appleton | WI | USA | Posted: 10:10 PM on 03.23.08
->> Did anybody out there use a new Verizon Rev-A wireless card? We just got our Verizon cards upgraded to the new Rev-A. I was shooting the state high school hockey championship tournament...transmitted about 25 pics after the game and it just flew. Not as fast as high speed wireless...but it was plenty fast on deadline...just curious...Dan.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 10:16 PM on 03.23.08
->> okay...lemme repost. I just looked at a couple of photos from different folks at the davidson-georgetown game...EVERYONE ran out on the floor. so I guess the "pull their credentials thing" won't work.
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Brian Westerholt, Photographer
Kannapolis | NC | USA | Posted: 10:26 PM on 03.23.08
->> I am one of the "runners" that Delane mentioned - and I guess I forgot about the rule, and so did everyone else around me. The same thing happened when Davidson beat Gonzaga on Friday as well. I saw everyone else run onto the floor, so I just assumed it was OK (I know, never assume).
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 11:30 PM on 03.23.08
->> I guess because we had a "veteran crew" of shooters at the regional in Anaheim we had zero problems with "court runners" at the end of the two exciting games Saturday.

(Of course several of the photographers there had covered UCLA when the most (in)famous court running incident occurred in Oakland, which has already been linked. So NOBODY wants a repeat of that terrible incident.)

Let's hope that the photo marshals at the 4 regional finals pass along the reminder about no "court running". (Of course that didn't do much good in Oaktown a couple of seasons back, did it?)

On the Verizon Rev A card ... as I wrote above, the throughput can be pretty speedy. But in large venues during events, it will be rendered almost useless. Data was moving on the Verizon at 6-10 k during the games Thursday and Saturday.

I have heard of occasions where the data speed is very good even at events ... the AFC championship game is one ... but generally speaking, usually once the stadium/arena fills, the speeds drop.

But as they say ...YMMV.

Mahalo!
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Dan Powers, Photographer
Appleton | WI | USA | Posted: 11:42 PM on 03.23.08
->> Yeah...forgot about all the yahoo phone traffic...that would drop your speed alright...guess I need to get out of Appleton more often!
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 1:28 AM on 03.24.08
->> In case anyone wants the details on strobe use for the Final Four:
http://siphoto.com/?FinalFourRules.inc

And here is the NCAA Tournament credential use agreement:
http://siphoto.com/?FinalFourPolicy.inc
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