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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

More on (moron?) Ethics
Joe Cavaretta, Photographer
Ft Lauderdale | FL | USA | Posted: 4:19 PM on 04.13.08
->> I for one, am tired of hearing every time a photo manipulation issue comes up that we who call ourselves "photojournalists," or the "NPPA-types," are merely "out of touch" with the way things are now, what with the internet and all these cool new tools. And of course, my favorite, "No wonder why newspapers are going out of business." Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah

News flash: Photoshop has been around a lot longer than the World Wide Web.

And before Photoshop, there was always someone with "mad darkroom skills," or a crazy talented photo retoucher.

It was wrong then and it is wrong now.

The "Hand of God," way of burning down prints was very controversial and not widely accepted. There just weren't 7,000 websites and blogs where the discussion was taking place.

A little history lesson: Most newspapers had retouchers who worked in the pressroom. They had the freedom to routinely do what was unthinkable when it came to news stories: alter a photo to such an extent as to change its factual content.

Concerned news photographers who were tired of taking the fall for such glaring errors knew that they were going to have to educate the industry and teach our editors and publishers that photos were also content, not just purdy decorations to put 'tween all that gray stuff. It was like a virus that spread though the photo world, starting at places like the University of Missouri and people like Angus McDougall.

And it become commonplace for newspapers the have actual photo editors, not just radio dispatchers and schedule makers that they had been in the past. During news meetings it became commonplace to let the "photo people," talk about today's photo offerings.

Now it seems there is a great rush to throw that all away. With the new technology, well, anyone can make a photo. Anyone can learn Photoshop. Why, we won't even have to pay photographers any more... people will just send stuff in to go with our stories!

Well, I say, our integrity is our most precious commodity. That is what will seperate us from the citizen journalists and the bloggers in the long haul. That is why so many of us get upset when there is a high-profile incident that tarnishes us all.

Hey, I went to a university that had a total of two photojournalism classes. The guy who taught them also ran the entire journalism department. I don't ever even remember talking about ethics.

When I showed up at the Albuquerque Tribune I was clueless. The shooters and editors from Ohio and Missouri literally used to ask me "what the F**K do you think you're doing? So, I learned the hard way. You don't have to.

You might not consider yourself a 'Photojournalist," but I notice everyone who makes that claim in defending this stuff usually says "available for editorial assignments," on their member profile.

Maybe its the new guys who don't "get it." Turn this around. What the new tools and the new media do is present you with the opportunity to let tens of thousands of people know how you feel about photos and their integrity when it comes to manipulation. In my day, I made an ass of myself in front of three other staff members. Now you have the opportunity to be Worldwide!
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 4:31 PM on 04.13.08
->> you go Joe!
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Karl Stolleis, Photographer
Santa Fe | NM | USA | Posted: 4:58 PM on 04.13.08
->> Thank you Joe.

Guess the world is more like Nascar where "if you aint cheatin' you aint winnin'," than any of us would care to admit.

To ALL the young shooters out there. Pay attention. This sort of stuff will eventually catch you.
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Mark Davis, Photographer
Decatur | AL | USA | Posted: 8:45 PM on 04.13.08
->> So, for example its okay underexpose and use a flash to darken an area, or its okay add in camera a polarized filter, to bring out the blue of a blue sky, and to add a warming filter (or warm the color using in camera white balance) to add warmth to the lighting, and doing that’s okay, but if you do that in PhotoShop its unethical. How is that justified?

I am certain, with the exception of sports when using long glass and shallow depth of field, or spot news coverage that a large percentage of editorial photographs have been adjusted in some fashion. Whether it’s only the camera settings, the lighting or use of PhotoShop. If not, many photographers would not have the reputation they have of being excellent shooters.

Further, in the real world (based on 26 years experience, 11 on staff of a daily paper, remainder shooting for magazines, other papers and publications) 90% of the time, editors will either crop a photo prior to publication, or request, prior to shooting, a certain sized photograph. Based on this experience, I can’t imagine the same doesn’t happen to everyone else too.

For the record, I shoot industrial and editorial assignments, and teach photography at a community college.
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Daniel Putz, Student/Intern
Shippensburg | PA | | Posted: 9:27 PM on 04.13.08
->> I go to a school with one (1) PJ class and Ethics were beaten into the class each day (as well as every class in the department). I see there has been a lot of discussion lately about Ethics and that 'students these days just think they can do anything they want'.

Yes, I do agree it is a problem that needs to be discussed, and frankly it's getting scary. But what doesn't need to happen is for every young'un like myself to automatically be looked down upon.

I know this hasn't happened yet, but just words of caution from the bottom as I see it happening above me.
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Nick Iwanyshyn, Photographer, Photo Editor
Grande Prairie | AB | | Posted: 9:44 PM on 04.13.08
->> Mark, How is that not justified? It is absolutely unethical to darken the area around where a flash "could" have been or change the color in post to simulate a filter you "could" have put on the camera, it's simple.

Why not start doing these things in the first place, stick on those filters, and carry those flashes, then we wont have this little problem, it will speed up your work flow too!
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Mark Davis, Photographer
Decatur | AL | USA | Posted: 10:01 PM on 04.13.08
->> Nick, but why? That's my question. What difference does it make, if the end result is the same. That is what is confusing to some of us. I just don't buy it that PJ photographers do not post adjust their photographs.
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Nick Iwanyshyn, Photographer, Photo Editor
Grande Prairie | AB | | Posted: 10:09 PM on 04.13.08
->> Because all of that can be done ahead of time, with the right combination of gear, planning and skill. Thats what makes a good photographer, not the fact that they can do all of that afterwards sitting in front of a computer screen.
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Fraser Britton, Photographer
Ste Anne de Bellevue | QC | Canada | Posted: 10:57 PM on 04.13.08
->> A good photographer != an ethical photographer. Some of you seem to be confusing those two facts.

Mark is right of course, there are lots of straw man arguments, but no one will come out with a valid reason for why some people think it is ok to do one thing with equipment, and yet they think it's abhorrent to do the SAME THING in post processing. Arguing that it's just better to do it in camera, and therefore ethical that way, is a ridiculous argument. The real question of ethics is about CHANGING the story the photo tells, but changing content, context etc. You can do that with something as simple as a crop. There isn't an arrow straight line drawn in the sand. It isn't black and white. It is many shades of gray.

I think everyone will agree that James Natchwey is one of the greatest photojournalists of our time. He has techs spend hours in darkrooms producing his prints, doing some of the exact same things that some people are doing in photoshop. Is he now unethical?

Ethics does seem to be a buzzword lately, but some people seem to be taking things a bit far. At the end of the day, when you change the content or context of a photos, you have crossed the line.
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Dave Doonan, Photographer
Kingston | TN | USA | Posted: 10:58 PM on 04.13.08
->> I think Mark makes a good point. Why add filters and lighting effects beforehand if it can be done after.It's a dilemma those who shot file understand. I think these decisions are the photographer's and his or her's only. I think toning is okay but alteration through cloning or extracting objects is wrong. We all crop don't we. So is this an ethical situation too??
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Jason Franson, Photographer
Edmonton | AB | Canada | Posted: 11:19 PM on 04.13.08
->> The moment that was captured in the photo had to be done on the fly, without the opportunity to set up flashes and what not to make it look pretty. So it should be left that way and not altered to make it look the way, a person wished it looked.

Theres nothing wrong with correcting a photo to make it look like it was when you saw it. I highly doubt anyone sees a dark halo or blacked out backgrounds in the pictures they see through the viewfinder. If it's not there don't put it there, it's that simple.
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Jason Kaye, Photographer, Photo Editor
Tacoma | WA | | Posted: 11:24 PM on 04.13.08
->> Thank you Mr. Cavaretta.
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Nick Doan, Photographer
Scottsdale | AZ | USA | Posted: 11:56 PM on 04.13.08
->> There is one point that I have not seen that I think really needs to be brought up. Someobody's ethics have been called into question in another thread (and continued in this one), and thus his credibility and the credibility of his past work.

Do you think that this is going to affect his relationship with editors and his chances of continuing to work in an editorial market? I think that it already has at this point. (And, I am really sorry to hear that because I do think he is a talented person.)

But more importantly, those people who are defending him or questioning the "reality" of editorial ethics... Do you think maybe those people are tarnishing their own reputation and credibility by trying to support over-manipulation of a photo?

The lines are unclear, that is understood, but in my opinion it's always better to err on the side of caution when it comes to ethical questions. Are the people defending the use of digital manipulation to enhance editorial work erring on the side of caution?
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 12:02 AM on 04.14.08
->> I think you can debate journalistic ethics for a lifetime and still not resolve the issue. The issue is not as clear as black and white. People will draw lines in the sand, but only to the point where affects them in a competitive situation.

Questions to ponder...

Wouldn't using a lens other than something in the 38mm to 65mm (the average range in 35mm format of focal length of the human eye I told back in college) on a full frame camera body be considered unethical? Would not using a digital camera body with a crop factor be unethical by the standard that some measure strict ethical creation of an image? Wouldn't the ethical approach to PJism be all assignments shot with a full-frame body and 50mm lens?

Many photographers are taught to create photos with their own 'voice' to tell a story, but doesn't that also cross the ethical line of editorializing the subject matter.

Is it unethical to shoot an image including or excluding an individual because of their race, sex, religion, or physical appearance because it does or does not help tell the story you want viewers to see? Cropping or composing an image in the camera is just as unethical as doing it in the darkroom or on the computer right?

Photography is an imperfect form of recreating a moment or scene. That is why much of it is considered an art form. There are too many variables to control and too many ways to interpret a scene. Ask 10 photographers to quickly shoot and post a photo of the same object and we all know not one of the images will match in exact detail one of the other nine or 100 for that matter.

Then what of the practice of using depth of field to include or exclude objects? Wouldn't that mean that newpapers should only supply lenses with a fixed f-stop of F8 or F5.6?

Photography itself is imperfect due to variances in each individual lens used and in each individual sensor in every camera to the technical training of the person pushing the button. Wouldn't those variances leading in the creation of an image make the image unethical because the camera added or subtracted sharpness, color balance, or hue because it was technically unable to match the scene exactly. Until cameras can produce exactly what the human brain can sense the dilemma of ethical photography will be and continue to be a raging debate. And at that point choosing what to and what not to photograph will become an ethical debate.

We can paint broad strokes such as not cloning or manipulating colors until they no longer resemble those in the original scene or discouraging the use of the 'Hand of God' technique in post-processing. When it come to trying to regulate details on the creation of the final image I think it takes away from the individuality and the natural variance in what each indvidual behind the camera perceives at any given moment.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 12:41 AM on 04.14.08
->> please folks....if ya'll don't understand photojournalism ethics do a google search on the nppa and look up code of ethics...or the poynter site. the silliness of some of these arguments is monumental. and the really sad thing it's the same thing over and over again. cropping is not unethical, the use of different lenses is not unethical...and again some folks are lumping ALL shooters together. unless you're shooting a situation for a news or sports editorial publication and supposedly attempting to convey a truthful depiction of what is going on...don't worry about it. turn the sky green, clone out those obnoxious wires and telephone poles, delete the distracting background or people you don't like. it's okay.....image away to your heart's content....spend hours making it just right......one thing that several folks keep trying to impress some of our confused members about is although you don't understand us we're not saying we're better than you. no one has even alluded to that. we live by different rules (wow how many times have I posted that phrase?) and as joe said at the beginning of this post and what I can't figure out is how so many folks who post here claim to be journalists with lots of experience but claim they don't understand what's wrong with darkening a background so much it disappears....I really confused about that.
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Steve Russell, Photographer
Toronto | ON | Canada | Posted: 2:58 AM on 04.14.08
->> Well put, Joe Cavaretta, Well put!
Ditto Chuck!

Carl askes, "Wouldn't the ethical approach to PJism be all assignments shot with a full-frame body and 50mm lens?"
No, Carl, that is why it is called PhotoJOURNALISM. We go to school to learn how to tell the story with pictures in a complete and truthful way.
Just as reporters will amass pages of interviews and observations only to have ten inches appear in the paper. What gets left behind and what makes it into the story? Reporters sort through all the info they have gathered to make sure the story is balanced, we do too. We try to capture and record an event in a truthful way that is fair. Simularly our file should reflect that as well. While we may have some input in the actual picture selection, it falls on picture editors and page editors to find the perfect mesh of story and picture. The picture does not always have to match the story, it can sometimes show a different aspect of the story that the writer could not fit into the 10 inches of story.
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Steve Russell, Photographer
Toronto | ON | Canada | Posted: 2:59 AM on 04.14.08
->> OOPS, I meant Clark, darn!
Sorry!
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Aaron Rhoads, Photographer
McComb | MS | USA | Posted: 6:05 AM on 04.14.08
->> ethical pj vs photoshop.

If you don't know what to do, tell you what. The next time you enter a contest. In your caption write what you did to make the picture.

Filters, flash, underexposed... Say so.

If you used the hand of God approach or other techniques in photoshop, say so.

See what that gets you.
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Jesse Beals, Photographer
Silverdale | WA | USA | Posted: 12:58 PM on 04.14.08
->> I've been following this for about a week now on both threads. The photographer dealing with the hornets nest is a good photographer, heck a great photographer. Did he step over the line in the photo thats being judged? Yes, could that photo been created through the camera with flash strobes? yes / maybe if everything was set just right and the timing was right on with everything working on his side at that moment.

In the end when somebody creates a great photo like the one in judgement everybody is gonna want to know how you did it. I mean heck if you clean house in every photo contest people are gonna ask, how did this young person destroy the compatition? Who is this guy and how did he capture these breath taking photos?

A. Do you say well I went into photoshop and burned the image until it look award winning?

or

B. Do you lie and say that's how I shot the picture? even though you know it's not the way it was shot.

Burning, dodging, spotting, cropping, levals, sharpness and adjusting curves. These are all tools we photographers use in a daily eiting of a photo on the computer in photoshop. The question is when is it gone to far? My thoughts are when you have changed the photo say even 15% / 25% then you have gone to far.

Another problem I have on this is when people step over the line and they enter these photos in contests and clean house. Maybe one of us who had a great photo that we are very proud of gets beat by an enhanced photo. Is this wrong?, we played by the rules and lost. That photo that you were 100% sure was going to be your bread and butter photo is know a second place photo that nobody remembers.

Pro sports bans cheaters, photography contest award them cash, prizes and top honors. The kid being called out on a few websites, this could make or break his career. So much talent and I have always said, man this person's work is awesome, yet in a click of the flash their image is tarnished. In the end this comes back and hurts all of the other photographers out there because even if we are not in the wrong, people will say "OH I read that photographers fix there photos on the computer" thats why it looks like that. If you take a picture and plan to go into photoshop and change it up, please from know on label it a photo illustration.
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 1:39 PM on 04.14.08
->> "The kid being called out on a few websites, this could make or break his career. So much talent and I have always said, man this person's work is awesome, yet in a click of the flash their image is tarnished. "

Please get a grip folks. A little food for thought here . . .

Everybody wants to blame whoever this person is (I don't know who is the topic of this raging debate) for 'cheating' which I think is pretty darn STUPID of anybody who does in my book. The person(s) at fault for him/her winning are the judges, plain and simple. Obviously the "HOG" technique was acceptable otherwise it wouldn't have received such high consideration that it deserved to win.

Don't blame the photographer, blame the judges who basically said by their actions that the image was acceptable by organizational standards. This is about as bright as blaming the weatherman for rain. The problem lies not with the photographer but with the contest, the judges, and the values they hold.

If the judges couldn't tell by looking at the image that it was 'over manipulated' then may be, just may be they shouldn't be judging a photojournalism contest. If they could tell and that bothers folks contact them and let them know your disappointment and why it violated your code of ethics.
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 1:57 PM on 04.14.08
->> "No, Carl, that is why it is called PhotoJOURNALISM. We go to school to learn how to tell the story with pictures in a complete and truthful way. "

No, Steve people go to school (assuming you meant college) as an archaic right of passage to be absorbed hopefully into a higher social economic class. You don't need to go to college to be a successful photographer in any genre in the industry/art form.

The truth in photography is that it is subjective and the application of ethics is situational. Why apply a policy in post-processing but not in the creation of the image where a photographer can control lighting, exposure, angle of view and composition? From a pragmatic view this would be just as unethical as post-processing an image to control the same factor.

If the photographer had create the image with an assistant holding an off-camera snooted strobe, would the image be any more or less ethical?
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Nhat V. Meyer, Photographer
San Jose | CA | USA | Posted: 2:30 PM on 04.14.08
->> Thanks Joe - well said...

Chuck here is a link that might help:
http://www.nppa.org/professional_development/business_practices/ethics.html

"6. Editing should maintain the integrity of the photographic images' content and context. Do not manipulate images or add or alter sound in any way that can mislead viewers or misrepresent subjects."

I just want to clarify something - what said photographer did (from Melissa's thread:
http://www.sportsshooter.com/message_display.html?tid=29027 ) was NOT dodging and burning or over-toning - he DELETED information from that image. There are areas that were nearly white which are now black. Dodging and burning within reason, 1-15% is okay, deleting information is not okay. If you don't see a problem with that picture then Chuck is right - you need an overall ethics lesson.

This has nothing to do with his skills as a photographer, I'm absolutely not "a little jealous of his success at such a young age." I admired Allan Dietrich and Patrick Schneider's work - until I found out some of it was fake - how much, who knows? They are not young.

let's not blame the judges, who I'm sure assumed were looking at real images, and take a little personal responsibility for our actions.
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Bill Ross, Photographer, Assistant
Colorado Springs | CO | USA | Posted: 2:48 PM on 04.14.08
->> Being one of the "confused members" let me just say that I have also been following this and other threads about this issue. I'm not a PJ. Ok, so you can stop reading now because I will probably labeled as someone who doesn't know anything. I've always thought Photojournalism required OBJECTIVITY. How is changing the "mood" of a photo by adding or subtracting information in the original photo being objective?

I have now addes PJ ethics to the list of "Things you should never argue about"

1. Religion
2. Politics
3. Money

and now #4 Photojournalism Ethics.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 3:10 PM on 04.14.08
->> Nhat, thanks for posting the links....that said...I don't see how anyone in their right mind can argue that a photo of a news (sports) "moment" shot in an even lighting situation and then manipulated to look as though it was shot at night with a flash is not deceiving the reader's, the judge's or the photographic community. granted the manipulated image DID NOT make it to newsprint, but that is beside the point. it's not like that was an illustration or a staged studio shot. and clark you keep asking the same questions over and over about post processing and say the application is situational. I can assure you 100% that if you shot that photo and post processed it to look like the contest entry and it was published in any newspaper of any standing the "application of ethics" would indeed be situational...your situation would be: out of a job and looking for work in another field of photography and not journalism.....ask dietrich how his subjectivity and application of HIS ethical standards worked out.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 3:58 PM on 04.14.08
->> as it was pointed out to me by an anonymous but concerned reader:
detrich...sorry allan.
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Clark Brooks, Photo Editor, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 5:06 PM on 04.14.08
->> "clark you keep asking the same questions over and over about post processing and say the application is situational. I can assure you 100% that if you shot that photo and post processed it to look like the contest entry and it was published in any newspaper of any standing the "application of ethics" would indeed be situational...your situation would be: out of a job and looking for work in another field of photography and not journalism....."

Chuck, I don't disagree with you on that point :) LOL...

However, the point I was hoping to make was that an image can be maniplated before it is recorded on film or in a digital file just as easily as it can be after.

My point is from a pragmatic view the process, from start of deciding to photograph a moment until it is captured is just unpure as the print or display image creation stage.

What bothers me is that the judges didn't pass over the images because of the heavy handed 'HOG' treatment when it should have. The fact that it made it through the judging process disturbs me more than the fact that it one.

Mr. Meyer wrote, ...."let's not blame the judges, who I'm sure assumed were looking at real images, and take a little personal responsibility for our actions."

So absolve the judges? Shouldn't they, too, take responsibilities for their oversight, as they are representing supposedly the eyes and brain trust of photojournalism community in choosing images the best represent the body of work for the genre? That would be like telling a referee it is okay to make a series bad calls that wins the game to a team that shouldn't have. Duh....
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Joe Cavaretta, Photographer
Ft Lauderdale | FL | USA | Posted: 8:01 PM on 04.14.08
->> My intent in starting this second thread was not to further beat a dead horse. After all; let he who is not guilty cast the first stone. Like I said to start this, I've made plenty of stupid mistakes myself. I was actually more disturbed by the reactions on the board to the original post than to the post itself. Why?

Because I see that this site is full of young impressionable students, many of whom, like myself, do not have the benefit of a top-notch photojournalism education and therefore the only exposure to a discussion about ethics might be what they read here.

By reading here that it is OK to break the rules that most working photojournalists adhere to because they can decide to not call themselves photojournalists, they might be narrowing their future employment opportunities considerably. I don't see any harm in letting know that is what I believe.

Slightly off topic- what is the word for a working art photographer? Barista.

Sure, newspapers as we know them might not be around forever, but at least for now, that is where most working photogs are employed. And most of the the good shooters, especially on this board, who are working for themselves or doing strictly magazine work, got their starts at newspapers.

Its like putting tabasco in your soup. You can't take it out and you might end up spending a lot of years making more soup to make it something people might want to eat again.

All I'm trying to point out is: think long and hard before you put the Tabasco in your soup, you might regret it.

Bill, I think an open discussion about this subject is a great. I do not look at it as "Things you should never argue about." A positive about this site is that now everybody is exposed to all sorts of opinions. At the very least, nobody who is a member here can claim they had no idea about this stuff. People are free to make their own choices. Me, I'm not fond of Tabasco.
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Bill Ross, Photographer, Assistant
Colorado Springs | CO | USA | Posted: 8:24 PM on 04.14.08
->> Joe, I understand all of this. I think most of this is great to discuss (I was just being a smart-a$$ in my argument statement). While I'm no PJ, I do understand the need to be as truthful and accurate as possible. The pressure to succeed can sometimes cloud judgement and that little tweak here and there is often thought justifiable. I think some of us are just trying to come to terms with technology and while it's made many things easier I believe it has also made many more things very complicated.

"It's not enough that we do our best; sometimes we have to do what's required." W. Churchill
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 10:06 PM on 04.14.08
->> I think one thing that has not been raised ... or I missed it ... even if the offender in this incident were not a "trained journalist," COMMON SENSE should have told him that you cannot change the reality of a news photograph.

It's one thing to do the "burn & dodge" dance in Photoshop. But as several pointed out in this thread and the original one, altering or eliminating information in a news photograph (like this is) changes its reality and a news photograph should honestly represent what the scene was.

Sure we can get caught up in the "a flash alters the scene" ... "a wide angle or telephoto alters the scene" ... fine, think that way if you must.

But this was a deliberate act to fool the reader into seeing something that really isn't there ... like day for night.

Changing the reality of a scene may be fine on a theatrical stage or a movie set. But when you are working for a journalistic entity, covering a news event, passing yourself off as a journalist and/or entering your work in a journalism competition, then some very important ethical guidelines must be followed.

That's only common sense.

Mahalo!


Robert Hanashiro
Sports Shooter
Founder
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David Harpe, Photographer
Louisville | KY | USA | Posted: 11:26 PM on 04.14.08
->> Is it ethical to cut and paste old replies from the dozen or so previous threads on this issue?
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 11:32 PM on 04.14.08
->> In my opinion, just link them if you must.

I think most of all, we should have a fresh discussion on this topic, especially as it relates to contest entries and photojournalism ethics.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 11:49 PM on 04.14.08
->> crap! dammit! why am I not a wordsmith like the great kahuna! I mean...geez isn't that what me, myself and I along with about every other photojournalist has said in the past couple of days about this? and joe...dammit! I love tobasco...especially the new green habanero! common sense.....it's just common sense. thanks bert. what is SO difficult here? man you see a hinky image and you gotta wonder. don't blame the friggin judges...you know why? they TRUST the photographer who entered the image to be TRUSTWORTHY! they TRUST the photographer who shot and entered the image to be submitting said image that was what they saw. please don't put the weight on the judges, that's crap. they cannot be responsible for someone being unethical. blame the friggin victim, and the victim is us.
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David Manning, Photographer
Athens | GA | | Posted: 12:10 AM on 04.15.08
->> As a younger shooter here who strives to learn from some of the bigger names on here, it's very disappointing to see how many people are "OK" with altering the content of a photo in such a manner. I work every day, trying new compositions, techniques, lighting and the whatnot only to see more and more people finding it acceptable to push the envelope with photoshop rather the camera.

I grew up in a darkroom. I smelled of stop bath and fixer and was the only kid who knew what a #2 filter did for contrast. I could dodge and burn but always thought that there was a better way to do that, in the camera, rather than spending 3 hours making a print. (Maybe i was just lazy) I knew there was always a time and a place for solarizing and all the other really funky techniques, rather they weren't for me.

I approach the digital darkroom - photoshop - the same way. There's a thousand techniques, many ways to do whatever to your photos beyond basic toning and cropping and removing those ikky dust spots and the odd sharpening to save that one image that i didn't shoot right the first time. And today, between the griping and the walking the city streets trying to "make" a feature under cloudy, dark, cold skies, i realized that I'd rather be suffering outside, trying to make a good/better photo rather than spending my time behind a computer, trying to do more than what i usually have to.

There's a long list of names of photographers that I'd love to be mentioned in the same sentence, paragraph or even conversation with. Lots from this site, even some in this thread. But i refuse to alter my photos beyond what's considered basically acceptable by my peers & NPPA (or what i was intending for in a portrait/illustration). At the end of my day, i know my work ethic and what i want out of my career. I have a firm belief of right and wrong, and i don't want acclaim, fame, or any reward from something i didn't earn or do in the camera.

Theses are just my opinions, its how i do things and how i live my life. I work hard and i try and make good pictures. I listen to photographers who are better then me and have been there and done that. And every one of them works hard and continues to try and make good pictures.

And thats all i want to do, is make good pictures.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 12:19 AM on 04.15.08
->> and david says it all. thank you
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David Harpe, Photographer
Louisville | KY | USA | Posted: 12:33 AM on 04.15.08
->> I think most of all, we should have a fresh discussion on this topic, especially as it relates to contest entries and photojournalism ethics.

Oh, sorry, I thought this was a rerun of the strobe vs. photoshop debate. My mistake! :-)

But to your point...has anyone taken a look at the contest in question and Dustin's winning entry in the contest?

http://www.cpoy.org/?s=WinningImages&yr=61&c=22

If you go through all of the entries (use the nav on the left side), I see numerous ones that COULD have had similar "processing" done to them. We don't know because we don't have the A/B comparison that we have for his entry, but there sure are a lot of punched up colors and a lot of "alternate process" shots. The silver award winner used a fisheye and didn't reference it in the caption. I sure hope no one at home thinks that roof is bent. :-)

If you Google the CPOY web site, there are no references to "retouch", "burn", "dodge", and only one reference to photoshop in the context of captioning. I looked at the rules and entry form that I could find on the site - they do not mention anything with regards to image production that I can find.

The point I'm making here is from everything I can find, he followed the rules of the contest he entered. The judges? Your peers - three newspaper folks and one magazine guy. I'm not putting the weight on the judges - I'm supporting them. They probably read the rules as well and judged the images accordingly.

If you look at the Sports Shooter clip contest rules, there's nothing in them that says anything about retouched imagery being ineligible. Only that the image must be shot during the time period for the contest - and that the sports shooter staff can delete entries for most any reason. No warnings about retouching, hand of god processing, etc. Clips have won with retouch, and it has been discussed previously:
http://www.sportsshooter.com/message_display.html?tid=20274

Just as the Sports Shooter clip contest rules do not eliminate retouched imagery, neither does the CPOY as far as I can tell from the web site.

All he did was follow the rules of the contest he entered. To me that isn't an ethics problem. When he turned in the image to the paper, he followed the rules there - he turned in a clean frame. It says to me that he knows where the lines are and knows how to follow them.

If he was hell bent on deception, doncha think he would have altered BOTH frames?
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 12:46 AM on 04.15.08
->> I have judged contests big and small; local and international ... and believe me, I've seen many entries that the judges thought were questionable and entries that were obviously manipulated.

But as a judge in any credible contest, you have to take it on faith that the photographers adhere to the ethical standards of journalism and the specific contest rules.

There are certainly a lot of things you can take exception with a contest judging panel, but placing blame on it for a photographer manipulating an entry isn't one of them.

I have enjoyed reading the responses here and in the original message board thread. It is good to have a lively debate on important issues with our craft and with our profession (in my case, journalist).

Obviously we have members from many photography professions and it's good for us to exchange points of view because of that.

I try not to get caught up too much in the "Photojournalism versus The Rest of Photography" argument. But hopefully those in the non-journalism field will be enlightened with this discussion and understand the ethical and professional constraints we have to work under.

The hard facts are that this incident involved someone in the photojournalism field ... ethics, credibility and responsibility are extremely important to journalism as a whole.

As Mark J. Terrill from AP/LA pointed out, this incident hurts not only this particular individual, but journalism as a whole. This is not hyperbole or hubris.

I feel sorry for this individual because he felt the need to go beyond the bounds of our professional code of conduct and I also feel sorry for our profession because this further erodes our credibility.

Obvious we will move on and this individual will make more photographs. Let's hope that he has the courage to admit his mistake, learn something from this mistake and can work hard to repair his reputation.

Mahalo!

Robert Hanashiro
Founder
Sports Shooter
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Vasiliy Baziuk, Photographer
Rochester | NY | USA | Posted: 1:22 AM on 04.15.08
->> Ok, since this thread seems to be continuation of the “burned edges photo” here are my two cents.

If we are so fixed on following the rules how about following the clip contest rules? That means following what they say and what they don't say..... I think most of the arguments here (and on the other previous thread) are open ended opinions that have gone out of context... (as most arguments here do,) But lets base those opinions on facts as they apply to this site. SS.com is not NPPA and has different guidelines and different “ethics” if any that apply to its contests, and that's how the photos should be judged on those merits set forth by SS.com and not by any other organization. (I feel like a lawyer here! lol) Read the fine print everybody! :-)
http://www.sportsshooter.com/contest.html

As I see it.... the “young photographer” did not do anything wrong and this seems to be a big misunderstanding. Here is why!
- According to the SS.com polls as of 4/15/08 (
http://www.sportsshooter.com/poll.html?results=1&pid=50 )
- 31.75% of member photogs are newspaper photogs.
- 44.12% of member photogs are freelancers. (most likely editorial freelancers.)
- Most of these photogs have strong opinions on preserving the integrity and the ethics of the craft... and for some of them it's hard to think of photos as having life outside the pages of a newspaper in a non editorial way.

The facts:
- The photo ran in a newspaper as it was shot in accordance with the NPPA code of ethics.
- The photo was then dodged and burned for a contest/portfolio.... non editorial use.
- That contest/portfolio was on SS.com and SS.com had no rules against that. (No rules broken.)
- The “burned” photo ran in a PDN Magazine as a body of work profiling the “young photographer” and his skills.... be it behind the camera or in photoshop. ( PDN is a triad magazine and is not TIME, Newsweek, or any other “news” mag. )
http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/about_us/index.jsp PDN did not report on that football game like many of you may think it did. The photo was NOT used in an editorial context. Therefore the NPPA code of ethics as many of you think apply, they don't apply.

Final thought:
I notice that for most of the time SS members seems to jump on the bandwagon and ride it. (sometimes that's me too.) What happened to being a “journalists” and having an independent POV and thinking for your self and digging deep and looking at the facts and at the whole picture to see if the line was crossed? Lets switch from the telephoto to a wide angle lens and see the whole story not just a fraction of it. I would be mad and disappointed as the next guy if the photo ran in the paper and violated the journalistic ethics.... but it didn't.... so there really is nothing to be mad about.

Yes this is a good thread to bring awareness to photography students and deter others from submitting unethical photos for editorial use but c'mon... this is not that case.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 1:38 AM on 04.15.08
->> "But as a judge in any credible contest, you have to take it on faith that the photographers adhere to the ethical standards of journalism and the specific contest rules."
this comment should stop all further comments and all confusion over "ethics" if it doesn't .............well ...yikes WE are in big trouble
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Jeremy Harmon, Photo Editor, Photographer
Salt Lake City | UT | USA | Posted: 1:40 AM on 04.15.08
->> There are a great number of us who take the NPPA ethics code quite seriously because it is a measure by which we can make sure we tell the truth.

I like a pretty picture as much as the next guy, but I like an honest picture more. If a photographer likes to produce dishonest photos, I guess that is their choice and there is certainly a market for that sort of thing. Journalism, however, is not that market.

If a reporter changed a quote, fact or context of something in a story to make the story "better", they'd be fired. A photo is a visual quote. I don't know what more needs to be said.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 1:53 AM on 04.15.08
->> obviously vassily you are out of touch with reality and this business . this is a great case for kids to look at the "reality' of what we do. so you shoot a news photo......you think you can make it better by changing everything in photoshop...that's okay huh? holy crap.....we wonder why the business is sinking into the toilet...look no further than opinions like this.
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Baron Sekiya, Photographer
Kailua-Kona | HI | USA | Posted: 4:42 AM on 04.15.08
->> I was on the board of directors for a local historical society and the forte of our collection are the thousands of historical photographs in addition to historical writings and objects in the collection.

I must say that if you work for a newspaper your photos are vital to being historical record of the area. Doing something as innocuous as removing a utility pole because you accidentally had it in your photo changes that historical record. If someone is doing research to figure-out when those poles were put in doesn't see it in a photo, well you've just changed history for that date. Can a researcher trust a newspaper photo if they're researching rainfall and someone changed a dark cloudy rainy day into blue sky?

I stress this to our freelancers that our paper is the paper of record in town and they have a very important job to document for future generations. Some overuse Photoshop to 'fix' their images (we're talking simulated limited depth of field by using blur filters and false colors) and I can't say much as it's beyond my control.

Sometimes I feel like I should just be driven to shoot video to avoid the whole mess that has become of manipulated still photography.
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Mark J. Terrill, Photographer
Simi Valley | CA | USA | Posted: 5:55 AM on 04.15.08
->> Vasilly,

Your argument is akin to a lawyer getting a criminal off on a loophole or technicality for something that any reasonable person would know is wrong. Lying is lying! I don't need a set of rules to know that. And I guarantee that the judges in that contest don't agree with your view. Your argument is a dodge plain and simple (pun intended).

If photoshop skills are part of the art of photography (which it very well may be), then that photograph should have been entered as a photo illustration.

To paraphrase Thomas Jefferson "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all contest entries be on a level playing field with one another, that they are endowed by their creator with certain ethical standards, among these are light (not created in photoshop), dark (not created in photoshop), and the pursuit of a good night's sleep for doing the right thing".

Sorry TJ. I know he's spinning in his grave right now.

Mark
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Mark J. Terrill, Photographer
Simi Valley | CA | USA | Posted: 6:40 AM on 04.15.08
->> Vasiliy,

I just noticed that I misspelled your name. My sincere apologies.

I love your portraits, especially the lead picture (no kidding). However I'm left to wonder how much of these were heavily Photoshoped and therein lies the problem. Once you cause people to doubt the authenticity of your work, it's a tough hill to climb to regain your reputation.

I made a mistake a few months ago where I accidentally over dodged an area without realizing it because I was rushed, in a bright car and didn't notice the mistake. The picture had to be killed from our system (no small thing) and resent. Even though it was an honest mistake, it damaged my reputation and I'm, deeply embarrassed by it.

When Adnan Hajj apparently decided to clone smoke into a news picture (
http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/newswire/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=10...) to enhance the drama, two wire services (as I understand it) purged all of his pictures from their archives authentic or not. Do you think he's using the "I didn't know any better" defense? Or the "I never saw any rules saying I couldn't do that" defense? How much work do you think he's getting now?
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David Harpe, Photographer
Louisville | KY | USA | Posted: 7:24 AM on 04.15.08
->> And I guarantee that the judges in that contest don't agree with your view.

Isn't that selling the judges a bit short? They give him an award for the image. It's obvious to anyone that it had a trip through photoshop...a simple shadow check will tell you that. Many of the other images in the contest also have that same "punched up" photoshop look. There are even images that look like "day to night" alternative process images - either in-camera or photoshop. And they all won awards.

So why did they give these images awards? Surely you don't think they just wrote it off as "in camera".

Answer: The judges didn't think it was as big a deal as you and others do - in the context of this contest.

If you want to be a truly harsh judge about the contest imagery, use the simple test of "would a non-trained observer at that location have been able to see what the image shows?", because that is essentially the logical extension of your argument - convey reality in the purest way possible.

For most of the imagery - many of them alternative process - the answer is NO. (most) People don't see in black and white. (most) People don't see with vignettes and speckles and dirt and grit. People don't see in fisheye. People don't see super-saturated, high contrast colors. Most of the contest entries fail the test...

...as would half of the imagery that moves on a daily basis in most major sports publications. The saturated colors, the blue windows, the silhouetted figures at sunrise. Those are all artifacts of the process - whether they result from tone curves or white balances set in the camera, or adjustments made after the images go into the computer. In the purest sense, they do not represent reality, because people would not see those scenes in that way if they were there. But that's an old, completely beaten into the ground discussion. Insert backreference to about a dozen threads on the topic.

End of the day he followed the rules of the contest. Judging by the look of previous winning entries in the contest he turned in similar work, which is smart if you're trying to win a contest. A group of his and your peers who had plenty of time to examine the image didn't seem to think otherwise. He moved a clean image with the paper, and he didn't clone anything.

Comparing him to someone that clones smoke to make a political statement and then moves the doctored image on the wire is very inappropriate.
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Doug Thompson, Photographer
Floyd | VA | | Posted: 7:25 AM on 04.15.08
->> Robert Hanashiro says:

"...we will move on and this individual will make more photographs. Let's hope that he has the courage to admit his mistake, learn something from this mistake and can work hard to repair his reputation."

This, I believe, is a key point for any of us who must deal with a mistake in judgment.

Last summer, I was called out on this board for creating a composite shot of a full moon over a music festival in Southwestern Virginia. I created the illustration for my photo blog and the editor of the local weekly that I shoot for as a contract photog asked to use it in their feature coverage of the event. I submitted it but the cutline (that I did not write) failed to adequately describe how the photo was created. A follow up correction in the paper corrected the record and also stated that I had originally advised the editors on how the illustration was created.

I came under fire here on SS for creating the illustration and allowing it to be used in print. I was not a member of SS at the time but I defended the photo on my blog and claimed I followed the rules by identifying it as an illustration. But I was missing the point and did, in fact, violate the standards of the profession. I was wrong to create the photo in the first place and I should not, under any circumstances, have submitted it for print. I apologized to both the readers of my blog and the paper. At my request, the paper reviewed all photos I had shot for them over the previous three years as a contractor and found no problems. I was cleared and continue to free-lance for that paper and others in the area.

But the damage was done. On this board, I was compared to Detrich. Some called on the paper to fire me. Some said I was in the clear because I had told the editors the image was an illustration.

I don't thing I was right or in the clear. I created the image and allowed it to be published. I was playing around a lot with Photoshop last year for images that were displayed in a gallery and had convinced myself that I could separate the two different photographic endeavors. I was wrong. I'm not a kid fresh out of school or a beginner in the business. I have 45 years in this profession and should know better. I screwed up and made a fool of myself. I'm sorry for doing so and apologize, again, to my fellow shooters. I removed the image from my blog and now use it as an object lesson when working with young photographers as an NPPA mentor. Hopefully, they can learn from my mistakes. I have.
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Nhat V. Meyer, Photographer
San Jose | CA | USA | Posted: 1:37 PM on 04.15.08
->> ack - David how can you justify that image??? Even if it was "just for a contest" - it was for a college NEWS photographers contest... Patrick Schneider was suspended (and eventually fired) from his job for doing the EXACT SAME THING!!! He blacked-out the background in one of his contest entries. His published images were toned differently than his contest images - he was suspended for three days for that and fired after another toning incident. Why do you think this is okay now?

http://www.poynter.org/resource/45119/done.swf (link from Nick Adams from previous post)

http://www.pdnonline.com/pdn/newswire/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=10...

Reread Hanashiro's comments on judging, I have never judged but I've watched POY and CPOY and other contests numerous times - they look through thousands and thousands of images! Do you think it's really realistic to question every image they look at? They'd still be judging cpoy from 10 years ago.

If you looked at the contest entry - before looking at the real image - could you tell that he toned/deleted the white wall and goal post in the top left, that's like a 100% burn-down/deletion of that area. I know i wouldn't have known that it was in a "well lit dome" - the point is it's misleading, untruthful and wrong.
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Jody Gomez, Photographer
Murrieta | CA | USA | Posted: 1:56 PM on 04.15.08
->> "The moment that was captured in the photo had to be done on the fly, without the opportunity to set up flashes and what not to make it look pretty. So it should be left that way and not altered to make it look the way, a person wished it "looked." Nicely said Jason. You've expressed what I love about photojournalism/street shooting.

"I do agree it is a problem that needs to be discussed, and frankly it's getting scary. But what doesn't need to happen is for every young'un like myself to automatically be looked down upon. I know this hasn't happened yet, but just words of caution from the bottom as I see it happening above me." Daniel, in theory I agree with you. I'm not placing blame but I believe rank follows leadership. So if I don't get anywhere as a pj if I refuse to excessively tone, then so be it. I can live with that. Because one day I will consistently produce "wow" images on the fly (which is the goal I strive for daily). When that happens, I will accomplish my goal to be a top photographer, and to have unquestionable ethics. I have the unquestionable ethics part down and I'm daily working to improve my photography skill.

"... even if the offender in this incident were not a "trained journalist," COMMON SENSE should have told him that you cannot change the reality of a news photograph." Hear hear. Well said Bert. Sadly, it seems that most people these days lack common sense.

"But as a judge in any credible contest, you have to take it on faith that the photographers adhere to the ethical standards of journalism and the specific contest rules." Bert - I wish. People often govern themselves by the letter of the law instead of the spirit of the law - so if the laws, rules, or directions don't specifically exclude something, then "technically" they weren't broken. Personally, I don't agree with this thought process, but I (and my God) hold myself to an extremely high standard, and I prefer to live by moral and ethical standards above and beyond legalities. We should be able to have faith in our fellow man, however a five minute look around any city will tell you that blind faith in anyone is dangerous. Hope for the best in people, but don't assume they are upstanding. After all, when you assume, you make an "ass" out of "u" and "me".

"I made a mistake a few months ago where I accidentally over dodged an area without realizing it because I was rushed, in a bright car and didn't notice the mistake. The picture had to be killed from our system (no small thing) and resent. Even though it was an honest mistake, it damaged my reputation and I'm, deeply embarrassed by it." Mark, good for you for caring, and good for your editors for upholding the standard. We've all made mistakes no matter what field we're in. A parallel story from my past in the mortgage industry - I had a borrower submit fake tax returns to me on a government insured loan. The lender had a verification system I didn't have. They caught the fake on the day the loan was supposed to close and stopped the funding. I had nothing to do with the fraudulent taxes and was horrified and infuriated that I was put in this position by the borrower. However because of my history of integrity and honesty with my lenders, I was able to resolve the issue and close the loan. If we have unquestionable ethics, then an honest mistake will not hurt us in the long run. It is critical to be known as a person with the highest ethical standards because you never know when someone will try to pull a fast one on you or when you will make an honest mistake. If you are unsure what is acceptable and what is not - then CYA. Having a frank discussion with your superior (preferably in writing) and following those guidelines protects everyone involved.

"I have judged contests big and small; local and international ... and believe me, I've seen many entries that the judges thought were questionable and entries that were obviously manipulated." Bert, I can imagine what a tough job judging a contest is. I highly doubt that I will ever be asked to judge a photo contest, however if I were, I would apply the adage - when in doubt, don't. If a photo is questionable to me, I wouldn't consider it until or unless it could be proven to be within the ethical and technical guidelines of the contest I was judging. While I realize this approach is not practical in any way, I think it would be a great way to keep everyone honest.

I am in no way passing judgment on anyone. I refuse to do so because I'm imperfect and fallible. I have made plenty of mistakes and I'm sure will continue to do so. In my perfect world, we all would seek out the best in each other and hold each other to the highest standard. To quote the wise King Solomon, "Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out." Boy, that's the truth. If one of our brethren stumbles, instead passing judgment and throwing stones, I wish we would and try to learn the reason for the fall so we can deal with it in a way that brings out the best in each of us and brings us together instead of creating adversity and tearing us apart.

Just my idealistic two cents.

Jody
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Allan Campbell, Photo Editor, Photographer
Portland | OR | USA | Posted: 2:52 PM on 04.15.08
->> I think people are missing that the problem is not that it was dodged or burned but HOW MUCH it was dodged and burned.

Personally one of the best discussions I have had on this topic took place with Bert. He went over what USA Today would consider acceptable not only covering toning but things like Lensbabies, ultra wide lenses (bent walls), tilted horizons etc... None of those are really acceptable at USA Today (correct me if I overstepped the paraphrase). You just do not send anything with a tilted horizon, lens distorted walls, over burned or dodged toning.

You will see all of these offensives sent into contests. I oversee the toning of hundreds of photos every month. We strive not to change what the original photographer had as a vision. Our toning is mainly for reproduction based on paper stock, press line etc... It is very easy to go to far even just do that limited amount of correction.

With all of the tutorials out there about HDR and tone mapping and trying to match the range your eye will see vs, the sensor, versus the printed page we will not doubt be seeing more of these discussions.
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Vasiliy Baziuk, Photographer
Rochester | NY | USA | Posted: 3:29 PM on 04.15.08
->> Chuck

I'm completely in touch with what is real and what's not. I know my roll as a photographer when I'm on a editorial assignment, vs. when I'm working on an illustration assignment. I know my NPPA code of ethics, and I know the difference, and have the conscious to inform our readers if they are looking at an illustration vs. a photo. (Please read my previous post above.)


Mark

Thanx for the complement... the POY pics were a lot of fun working with the kids and took up a lot of time.

And actually the swimmer POY portrait was dodged, burned and saturated, toned, and skewed and it ran in the paper like that! I think I have the NPPA knocking on my door right now..... just kidding about the NPPA knocking :-)

If journalism is a hands off approach my Winter POY pics are defiantly hands on approach. And Mark, you wouldn't be the first to address my swimmer photo. However I brush it off my shoulder when someone brings up the dodge and burn issue in any of my Winter POY portraits. Not because I don't care but because I do. If you check my paper all of them are credited as “photo illustrations” I specifically asked our photo and sports editors to credit them as such... simply to avoid this mess. And as a result of that, my reputation as a photographer was strengthened amongst our readers. Few of them told me so personally. We told our readers they are looking at an illustrations vs. a photos. I as a representative of our paper was honest an upfront with our readers. That's alone increased our credibility as a newspaper.

When it comes to treating my pics for the paper for the editorial use I treat them like they should be treated for the newspaper/editorial use in accordance with the NPPA code of ethics. Not only that, I know my craft and I know my roll behind the camera and how to expose the picture to get the affect I want. That's what I was trained to do. That's what all photographers were trained to do.

If many photographers wnna post their photos here as they shot them that's great. If other photographers want to post their photos as they shot them plus make them look better and tasteful bodies of art thats great too. Where does it say we can't? SS.com is not a newspaper and is not any other editorial body. Although most of the SS.com members are editorial photographers so the misunderstandings happen here.

Please point out to me where it says what I said above is not true here is the link ---------->>>>>>
http://www.sportsshooter.com/contest.html

I said what I said, I meant what I said, I thought about what I said, and I'll stand behind what I said. I did my research and my arguments here are based on facts and not on how I think things “should be” because Chuck, that's not being in touch with “reality” of the situation. (zing!:-) And that's what many photographers here should look at before jumping on the bandwagon and passing their personal judgment backed by their beliefs. That's how any photo should be judge based on the context it was used in. (Read to my previous post above)

Good day Gentlemen!
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Jeremy Harmon, Photo Editor, Photographer
Salt Lake City | UT | USA | Posted: 3:58 PM on 04.15.08
->> Just because SS contest rules don't specifically say ethical practices should be followed, it doesn't therefore mean that anything goes.

The same holds true for a portfolio. If I were to get a portfolio that had obviously been toned aggressively, it would go in the "no" pile.

Just because some people wouldn't consider a portfolio "editorial" use, that doesn't mean it is acceptable for a photographer to tone it however they see fit.

Can a reporter go back and change stories for a job application to make them a better read because the stories are in their clips and no longer "in the paper"?

Such a thing is obviously asinine.

Why is okay to change a news photo just because it's in your portfolio and not in the paper? I do not understand that at all. I guess if you want your portfolio to say "Look at me, I care more about eye-candy than the truth!" go ahead and do what Vasiliy is suggesting.

If you want your portfolio to say "Look at me, I'm a journalist!" present your work in a way that reflects your professionalism. A portfolio is about your skill as a journalist. It's not about what you wish you saw.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer
Durham | NC | USA | Posted: 4:03 PM on 04.15.08
->> vasiliy, I certainly will admit when I make a mistake and after re-reading your post a couple of times I understand what you were getting at. and you are 100% right....I read the sportsshooter clip rules (I've never entered) and basically there are NO rules. it seems you just have to abide by a timeframe and category, there's no mention of the imaging aspects. that was kind of the point I've been trying to make (although maybe not so well) what I have been trying to get across is there shouldn't be a drastic difference in what a photographer submits that falls within visual ethical guidelines and what they enter in these contests. and it seems after reading many of these posts there are some very confused shooters out there as far as what's ethical and what's not. sorry if my post came off the way it did.....and btw those portraits are absolutely fabulous. and I think it's terrific you had your paper label them as illustrations although there is a field of thought that portraits are portraits and that designation (illustration) is unnecessary....but I digress......8)
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