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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Photography layoffs
AJ Maclean, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 12:07 PM on 06.12.08
->> I just found out today that the newspaper company I just left for grad school is laying off all their photographers. The reporters aren't being touched and the three photo editors for the 15+ newspaper company are retaining their jobs. They said the plan on filling in the photo hole with freelancers and of course, reporters with point-and-shoots. The papers are all outside of DC in Loudoun, Fairfax and Fauquier counties. Oye...
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
Live HVN : Work SFO-NYC | | | Posted: 12:17 PM on 06.12.08
->> AJ

Journal newspapers?
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Garrett Hubbard, Photographer
Washington | D.C. | USA | Posted: 12:41 PM on 06.12.08
->> wow. Good timing on your part. Kick some tail in grad school AJ!
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AJ Maclean, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 1:30 PM on 06.12.08
->> Thanks Garrett, I hope USA Today is treating you well! Steve, the company is Times-Community Newspapers if that's what you mean.
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Rene Mireles, Photographer
Holland | MI | USA | Posted: 1:32 PM on 06.12.08
->> Local Paper where I live also just downsized, they were purchased by a bigger company and first thing they did was shut down the sister paper in another town.

There were four positions in the photo dept one editor and 3 photographers before and now there is only two (photo editor/photographer) and another photographer.

I also heard they let go a good chunk of staff and all the in house printing of the paper is now outsourced to another location.
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Jay Westcott, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | USA | Posted: 8:47 PM on 06.12.08
->> Steven,

The Journal Newspapers were bought in late 2004 by Phillip Anschutz who then turned them into the Washington Examiner. I interned at the Journal in 2003 and was hired as a staffer right before the changeover to the Examiner at the end of 2004. Then, I was subsequently downsized in Jan. of 2007 along with another staffer when they bought reporters cameras...
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
Live HVN : Work SFO-NYC | | | Posted: 10:12 PM on 06.12.08
->> AJ,

You know I was thinking of your papers, while I had 'journal' in my head.


-----

Jay,

I knew the 'journal' papers were bought out and had the mixed with the Times papers in my heads. The Journal papers went down hill when at one point they disbanded most offices and had staffers working from home offices.



.......the destruction of local papers is horrendous.
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Rob Ostermaier, Photographer
Newport News | VA | USA | Posted: 10:07 AM on 06.13.08
->> My best to all those who lost their jobs.

I fear that with iStock and free reader submitted photos coupled with acceptance of lower and lower standards will lead to many more newspaper photographers losing their jobs.

Hold on out there, it's going to be a bumpy ride.
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AJ Maclean, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 5:15 AM on 06.14.08
->> I hear ya Rob. I was just told by one of the other former photographers there that "the higher ups wouldn't mind bad photo quality from submitted/reporter pictures to save money".

I remember growing up and looking at my local weekly papers (as these papers are also) and thinking the photos sucked and therefore thought of the overall paper as lower quality and didn't want to read it.

Oh I know this how the industry is going, but damn the bean-counters for creating a self-destructing idea for saving money.

Sorry for the language...
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Sean D. Elliot, Photographer, Photo Editor
Norwich | CT | USA | Posted: 8:41 PM on 06.14.08
->> So, the question I have, anyone have the parachute ready? What're you doing if you're next on the list. I know I'm not even close to having it figured-out, and the way things are going I figure I better.
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David Manning, Photographer
Athens | GA | | Posted: 10:25 AM on 06.15.08
->> As a younger shooter in this climate, I really don't have a parachute or a plan B or something incase the worst happens. I have no idea what i would do, because this is all i ever wanted to do. Perhaps its naive on my part, but i'd like to think i can somehow stay under the radar until the pendulum swings back the other way.

...I can still paint houses, i suppose.
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Marc Gold, Photographer
Reston | Va | usa | Posted: 7:51 PM on 06.15.08
->> Hi Aj

Are you speaking of Loudoun and Fairfax Times? They are the 2 main Papers of Times Community Newspapers. I have had some contact with there photo editors, I am very surprised with this news. There photographers are good hardworking people. I saw some of them just last week.
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Adam Vogler, Photographer
Emporia | KS | USA | Posted: 8:24 PM on 06.15.08
->> David,

I'm right there with ya bro. I just finished my first year in journalism: the first 10 months as a writer. It took me a year and a half to find a full-time shooting job.
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AJ Maclean, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 7:15 AM on 06.16.08
->> Marc,

Yup the Loudoun Times-Mirror and Fairfax Times are in the company.
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Heather Hughes, Photographer
Newport News | VA | USA | Posted: 11:56 AM on 06.16.08
->> I used to work there, left just over 5 years ago, was the photo editor at Fairfax.

This is scary news and I have been trying to reach Shamus for days to confirm that he's still there. (If anyone's in contact with him please have him call me!)

They are all a VERY hard working bunch of people, with terrible pay for the D.C. area and I am still shocked at the news. I've seen bad things happening at all the chains but this is a family owned paper, a big one at that, and this is not good for the industry.

I just hope Sam Zell doesn't hear about this and get any ideas for the Tribune properties.
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AJ Maclean, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 12:19 PM on 06.16.08
->> Hey Heather,

Yea, Shamus is still there, him and the photo editors at Loudoun and Fauquier are keeping their jobs.
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Jonathan Hanson, Photographer
Baltimore | MD | USA | Posted: 12:34 PM on 06.16.08
->> Part of me wonders about the freelance aspect. More and more papers are leaning on freelancers because its cheaper. And thats just it, its bad business for photographers to take assignments or day rates for $150, sometimes less with rights grabs. If photographers keep taking these low rates, papers will keep paying low rates and continue to lean on them for content more and more.

My thoughts are with the photogs that were laid off, I hope you work something out.
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Heather Hughes, Photographer
Newport News | VA | USA | Posted: 12:36 PM on 06.16.08
->> Thank you AJ!

It still sucks, I owe all of you a drink the next time I'm in town.
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Thread Title: Photography layoffs
Thread Started By: AJ Maclean
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