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UNDER IRON MOUNTAIN Corbis Stores "Very Important Photographs" At Zero Degrees Fahrenheit

Gary Haynes joined United Press International as a photographer in Detroit in 1958. By 1969 he was UPI’s assistant managing editor of photography in New York. From inside UPI, as a shooter and a boss, he saw nearly every UPI picture to move on the network for close to 11 years. Now, 35 years later, he’s deep in a rock cavern underneath a Pennsylvania mountain, looking for historic UPI negatives and original prints for a new picture book. Here’s what he and a few old cohorts discovered down at the bottom of a cold, deep mine, inside the "Corbis Cave."

By Gary Haynes
From Inside Iron Mountain, PA

Bill Gates caught flak from photographic historians and researchers in 1995 when he moved his vast Corbis photographic collection from New York City to a refrigerated cave 220 feet beneath the ground in a rural Pennsylvania mountain, near Butler, about an hour’s drive northeast of Pittsburgh. The move, which took place between summer 2001 and March 2002, required 19 refrigerated trucks.

The photographs might be preserved, critics said, but nobody would ever again have easy access to them. "Far from the reach of historians," huffed The New York Times. Most of those skeptics now realize that Gates — and Gates is Corbis, which he founded in 1989 — did the right thing. He has preserved an irreplaceable photographic history and has kept it accessible.

David Milne and I visited Corbis for the first time in June 2004 to locate photographs for a book about United Press International Newspictures. In addition to all the other things he owns, Gates owns all of UPI’s pictures, including all the photographs I made during my 11 years with UPI. The Corbis headquarters are in Seattle, with offices in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, London, Paris, Düsseldorf, Vienna, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, and Tokyo.

Iron Mountain Storage Facility, where Corbis stores it all, is reached by a two-lane road that rambles through the bucolic Pennsylvania countryside. Suddenly there’s the mountain, a sign with a cryptic symbol, and an expansive driveway. Iron Mountain has been in the storage business since 1951. They own several mines around the country that are similar to the Corbis Cave. By 1995 Iron Mountain’s revenues exceeded $100 million and they went public in 1996. Since then they’ve acquired 100 companies in 124 markets in 17 countries.

When you arrive at Iron Mountain and turn into the driveway, enormous concrete barriers slow your approach. Polite but armed guards emerge from a trailer to ask where you’re going. If you are unable to furnish a name of someone inside who expects you, that’s as far as you’ll get. When you tell them your destination, they call to confirm that you’re expected. They then inspect your car. The glove compartment. Under the seats. The trunk. The spare tire compartment.

The first encounter with Iron Mountain makes you wonder if you’ve somehow strayed onto the set of a James Bond film.

I’ve covered the White House. It’s easier to get into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue than inside Iron Mountain. After they clear your car, you navigate more roadblocks and stop at a traffic arm. When the arm is raised, you proceed down a ramp into mouth of the mountain itself. Giant steel gates open, swallow your car, and close behind you. There are more guards, friendlier somehow than the ones at the front entrance, but just as well armed. Everyone must sign in and produce two valid pieces of photo identification.

They give you an ID badge to wear and a fire extinguisher to carry in your car. You are told to park a few yards away to wait for your escort to arrive in a car to lead you to their site, a half mile or more away along a winding road through tunnels burrowed into this old limestone mine. More confining than a traffic tunnel, the ceiling is about 25 feet high.

We followed our host in serpentine fashion past doors of some of the other tenants of Iron Mountain: the U.S. Government, the National Archives, Warner Brothers, Universal Studios, the Federal Office of Management and Budget, US Investigations Services. Many doors are unmarked. At almost every turn side tunnels lead to other recesses of the cave. There are lights at the end of the tunnels — but our host makes clear that we are to do no exploring this underground hideaway is the workplace for more than 1,700 people. It has its own five-engine fire department, power generators, and dehumidification, refrigeration, and air filtration systems. There’s a water purification system fed by an underground lake. High-tech sprinklers and plumbing and security system cables snake across and up the walls and ceilings. Security cameras are everywhere. The temperature throughout the old mine is kept at 55 degrees. The mine covers a thousand acres, and about 130 acres have been developed for storage by 2,300 clients.

Someone must escort you even when you’re on foot outside the Corbis facility, which is how you reach the bathroom a few yards away. Your escort takes you there and waits to escort you back. Even the bathrooms are high-tech — the sinks and toilets must drain UP.

The Corbis entrance appears to be just a pair of doors hung on the side of the tunnel, with a doormat and two potted plants, flanked by a modest lighted "Corbis" sign on one side and an LCD photo display on the other.

Through the doors, which are kept locked, is a 10,000 square foot space carved out of the mountain with irregular walls and ceiling formed by the cave itself. A fourth of the space, in the front, is used for offices and a work area with high-end digital equipment, light boxes, editing tables, and copiers.

The walls are rough-hewn but white, and the facility is well-lighted. It is unsettling to be so deep underground, in part because there are no windows, but it’s not somber.

Several commercial food freezers currently protect 28,000 "Very Important Photographs" at zero degrees Fahrenheit, including some famous gems like "Albert Einstein Sticking Out His Tongue" and "Marilyn Monroe Having Skirt Trouble on a Subway Grate."

Past the offices and workspace is the refrigerated, humidity-controlled Film Preservation Facility, about 600 feet long (the length of two football fields). You enter through a pressure chamber, through two doors to preserve humidity and temperature levels. Inside are orderly rows and hundreds of file cabinets and crates containing old negatives, glass plates, and prints.

So much work remains to be done inside the FPF by Corbis staff that a compromise temperature of 44 degrees protects the film without frostbiting the staff. There is no firm timetable, but sometime after 2005 the FPF will be lowered to 4 degrees below zero, and the "Very Important Photographs" will move back to the FPF.

UPI’s vast collection is in there, the weathered and well-worn New York bureau daily logbooks, and the thousands of original 4x5 envelopes used for negative files well after UPI executive editor Harold Blumenfeld switched UPI photographers to 35mm in the 1960s (the 35mm film was cut into three-frame strips so it could be filed in 4x5 envelopes).

UPI’s photographs had been produced for speed, not archiving. In the rush to transmit pictures to UPI clients, black and white film and prints were rarely fixed long enough to dissolve out all the residual silver. Acetate was the most common film base from the mid-1920s into the early 1980s and the base, in time, deteriorates. The deterioration occurs even more quickly when film is improperly fixed and when it isn’t kept cool and dry. It is also believed that degrading acetate films are contagious and can hasten the decay of other films stored in the same area.

Bureaus and photographers would ship both film and prints to New York, where there was no motive or staff to re-fix the film and prints. The 4x5 inch Kraft file envelopes were made of acidic paper and held together with animal glues — more enemies of film preservation. Prints were filed by subject in ordinary file cabinets and kept at room temperature with no humidity control.

In short, UPI was doing just about everything wrong in the way it stored and handled prints and negatives at its headquarters at 220 E. 42nd Street in New York. As early as the 1970s a strong hint of vinegar in the air warned of prints and film going bad.

IN 1972, UPI was sold to a couple of entrepreneurs whose management skills could never catch up with their cash needs. Things got so bad that they began selling irreplaceable parts of UPI, including its thriving foreign photography bureaus (sold to Reuters) and staff and client contracts, dispatched at fire-sale prices.

Perhaps the crown jewel was the picture library: 11.5 million images of events and personalities on glass plates, negatives, and prints dating back to the Civil War. The archive was priceless and not just because of its size, but because of the "you are there" quality of the collection: historic material from International Newsphotos (1912-1958), Acme Newspictures (1923-1960), Pacific and Atlantic Photos (1927-1930), and UPI’s entire trove since 1907. Photo sales were bringing in $1 million or more a year, every year, without any marketing effort and with only four salesmen. UPI’s business department suggested that an electronic retrieval system and a marketing plan could double or triple that income.

UPI’s chieftains didn’t have money to spend as they scrambled just to meet the payroll. "Who cares about a damn picture library?" one of the owners said and in 1984, for a $1.1 million "advance royalty," Bettmann Archive gained exclusive control of the collection.

That meant moving all of UPI’s pictures from its headquarters on 42nd Street across town to Bettmann on 21st Street. UPI lost ready access to its own files and had to pay Bettmann $35 every time it needed a copy of one of its own pictures.

The UPI collection, however, might not have survived at all had not Bettmann taken over. UPI didn’t have the resources to preserve it, and the company’s owners didn’t understand its value. Even with Bettmann in control, several hundred negatives on glass plates were hauled to the trash because the glass was dangerous to handle and a pain to store. Despite entreaties by the UPI photography editor assigned to Bettmann, no prints or new copy negatives were made.

Bettmann could also "smell the vinegar" in the collection, rotting and even badly decomposed acetate negatives. Bettmann installed a computerized index system, cleaned up and reorganized the collection, and began investigating ways to better preserve it.

In 1995 Bill Gates’ Corbis bought it all — UPI’s 11.5 million images and the 5 million pictures Bettmann had accumulated since 1933 — for an "undisclosed" price, reported by Newsweek to be $6 million. Corbis has since added several other large photographic collections and more than a dozen smaller ones.

Corbis kept its UPI acquisition in a New York office but knew that the clock was ticking on a collection that had been deteriorating for years from heat, humidity, and less-than-gentle care and handling.

Corbis's researchers (many of them longtime Bettmann employees) discovered that only about 100,000 of the UPI/Bettmann collection’s 11 million original images had ever been looked at by a client, and of that number, only about 75,000 had ever been licensed.

Hundreds of "B" negatives had already deteriorated past the point of being saved. As it sought a long-term solution to preserving its collection, Corbis did a heroic edit of the vast archive, trying to learn what had sold well and what was most likely to sell in the future.

Corbis worked with Henry Wilhelm, an expert on the preservation of traditional and digital color photographs and motion pictures and the long-term preservation of photographic materials in subzero cold storage. Wilhelm wrote a 21-page recommendation for rescue options, and when Corbis decided that subzero storage was the way to go, Wilhelm oversaw the vault’s construction at Iron Mountain.

Keeping the collection at 4 degrees below zero Fahrenheit would halt deterioration, Wilhelm determined, and leave the photographs intact and usable for at least another five thousand years. He compared the effect to that of a woolly mammoth whose perfectly preserved carcass was found in Siberian permafrost in 1999. The mammoth slipped into an ice crevice and froze before decay could begin, to be discovered 20,000 years later with tissues intact.

"It’s a real demonstration of how cold storage works,’ Wilhelm says. "The lessons for film materials are clear. The gelatin layer of film is made from connective tissue of cows, essentially the same as the woolly mammoth. There’s just no doubt that this will work for film."


ON THAT FIRST visit I had a secret test for Corbis. I wanted them to find an obscure photograph I’d taken in July 1966, when Frank Sinatra married Mia Farrow in Las Vegas. We were in Los Angeles and were given less than an hour’s notice to photograph the couple after the ceremony. Being Hollywood, I had some connections and called Clay Lacey, who sold Lear Jets. He got me to Las Vegas with minutes to spare. Sinatra hated the press, and we were allowed fewer than five minutes with the newlyweds as they just stood there, five yards away, taking no directions and answering no questions.

After photographing the couple, I shot a 300mm telephoto close-up of 98-pound Farrow’s tiny hand weighed down with Frank’s Lord-only-knows-how-many-carat diamond ring. Not a prize-winning photograph, but one that got UPI a lot of play and prompted AP to try to match the shot by cropping just the hand and ring out of their general view (enlarger to the ceiling and easel to the floor, resulting in a photograph with more grain than ring).

UPI’s old daily logs are the Rosetta stone to UPI’s files. The New York picture desk recorded every photograph transmitted on UPI’s wire by date, time, and number. Provided a date and sack number, a white-gloved researcher went into the FPF and, fewer than 10 minutes later, handed me the original file envelope.

In my cotton-gloved hands were the 35mm negatives that I’d touched last 38 years before! It was a wonderful, truly nifty moment.

FORMER UPI SAIGON picture bureau chief and photojournalist Bill Snead accompanied Dave and me on a second visit to Iron Mountain. Snead, who started at the Lawrence (KS) Journal-World in the photography department in 1954 while still in high school, rose up through newspapers in Topeka, KS, and Wilmington, DE, before running UPI’s photo operation in Vietnam and then later working at The Washington Post and National Geographic. He’s now back home in Kansas as the deputy editor of the Journal-World, in charge of the newsroom. He volunteered to scour the Vietnam files for us.

"From the late 1950s to 1975 literally hundreds of journalists from all over the world poked their heads in at one time or another to check out the war, do a little dance with death, and pop out again," Snead says. "You could push fate as far as you wanted. Shooters who got the best pictures played it (Vietnam) like a rubber band, and sometimes it snapped." Five of UPI’s photographers didn’t return from Vietnam. Snead was soon surrounded by UPI photography logs and immersed in the Vietnam film and print collection.

"For the 40-some years that I shot film I had a well-earned reputation for not filing my negatives," says Snead. "My locker at The Washington Post, crammed with stained coils of 35mm negatives hanging on hooks, was known as ‘Snead’s Hanging Gardens of Kodak.’ But, when I worked in Vietnam (from 1967 to 1969) running the UPI photo bureau, I was pretty dependable at sending packets of captioned negatives to New York via air express after we’d transmitted the best pictures from Saigon. So 35 years later, while assembling a retrospective photography show, I wanted to see what happened to nearly two years worth of pictures that a lot of young men risked their lives to make with their choice to be combat photographers."

Snead says that after meeting Haynes and Milne at the Corbis Cave, Ann Hartman, manager of Library and Records Management for Corbis, and her crew happily pulled files that matched his time spent working in Vietnam.

"I found a half dozen frames that I’d taken — but only one had my photo credit. Six pictures, out of hundreds. I looked in vain for Kent Potter’s incredible before-and-after sequence of a GI losing an arm to a rocket, for Kyochi Sawada’s photographs of the Tet Offensive from Hue’s Citadel, where a very-alive Marine buried under rubble popped out from under a 50-caliber machine gun that was blasting away. Wearing my little white gloves, sorting through the old negatives, I felt sad that there weren’t more old memories to see and relieved when I’d see a frame that had put UPI on lots of front pages for a day."

Snead concluded, "It’s ironic that these historic images are deep underground — just like the majority of the shooters who made them."

WHILE CRITICS HARPED about moving so much photographic history from New York to a cave in Pennsylvania, Corbis was still busy creating digital scans of many of the pictures, at a cost of from $50 to $70 for each high-resolution scan. The electronic archive of more than a quarter-million images, including the entire UPI collection, is available online to anyone at www.corbis.com.

The early fuss about hiding history came from critics who hadn’t actually seen what Corbis has done. A Washington Post reporter was an early visitor, and reported that the FPF was a "vault, not a grave."

The furor has died down but Corbis must have been tempted to remind naysayers that Corbis legally owned all those photographs and could do whatever it wished with them. Bill Gates — Corbis — has the financial resources and clearly has an understanding of the importance of the irreplaceable records he is preserving. Corbis and its larger rival, Getty Images, now appear to dominate the photography market.

SEVERAL BOOKS ABOUT the old UPI have chapters about the Newspictures operation, but none of UPI’s actual pictures (because the cost of buying the rights to use the photographs could have financially doomed the books). Gates agreed in January 2004 to give us unlimited access to, and use of, UPI’s pictures for a hardcover book about UPI for a special fee that makes taking the risk of doing such a book possible.

UPI’s photographers won eight Pulitzer Prizes along with every other award known to news, feature, and sports photography: World Press Photo awards, National Press Photographers Association Pictures of the Year awards, White House News Photographers Association awards, George Polk Memorial Awards, and regional and statewide photography competitions. We wanted the UPI Newspictures story told with pictures: for several decades UPI Newspictures gave world-class headaches to the folks over at the larger and richer Associated Press. The typical UPI photographer would travel the globe and shoot thousands of pictures. After a decade or more he would leave UPI and have less than two dozen prints (and no negatives) of his work to show for his career. Our new book will celebrate UPI Newspictures, showcase some great pictures, and include some of the photographers’ inside stories about their pictures and what it was like to work for UPI.

Bill Gates started Corbis with the idea of selling homeowners photographs for display on wall monitors throughout their houses. On the walls of his Seattle mansion, he can display digital photos or fine art as mood and occasion dictate. On his tenth wedding anniversary, the monitors reportedly displayed wedding pictures. But whatever photographs may interest Gates or a Corbis client, it’s comforting to know that, thanks to Gates, it will all still be here, perfectly preserved, 5,000 years from now.

We will return to the Corbis Cave to continue mining the UPI photo collection. We’ve been enthralled by hundreds of images, including unfamiliar photographs of familiar events that we didn’t know existed — because they aren’t the "iconic" photos of an event, or because they haven’t been published since the day after they were taken. We hope this fresh look will provide our book about UPI Newspictures with more depth than we first dreamed.

In addition to his career at UPI, Haynes has also worked at the Salinas (KS) Journal, was a national picture editor for The New York Times in 1969, and in 1975 was the assistant managing editor of photography for The Philadelphia Inquirer. He can be reached at [email protected]

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NPPA Business Practices Committee Announces "Best Practices" Recommendations

DURHAM, NC  – The NPPA Business Practices Committee, after months of deliberations and reviews by industry leaders in photojournalism, today released "Best Practices for the Business of Independent Photojournalism."

The document comprises two lists of five recommendations, along with numerous sub-points. One list is for editors and managers who contract with freelance photojournalists. The other is for photojournalists. Both aim at fair and practical solutions to issues of rights, fees, expenses, and responsibilities. And both build on the newly revised and updated NPPA Code of Ethics.

"Best Practices for the Business of Independent Photojournalism" is available as a downloadable Adobe Acrobat .PDF file here, and is published below in full:

[statement updated March 16, 2005]

Best Practices for the Business of Independent Photojournalism

Following are two lists of Best Practices to consider when contracting for freelance photojournalism. These lists are guidelines and goals similar to those endorsed by other industries, such as medicine, agriculture and manufacturing.

One set of five points is for those who hire independent photojournalists. The other is to guide photojournalists in their efforts to deliver maximum value and accurate portrayals of reality to their clients, readers and viewers.

These lists grew from discussion, writing and rewriting by the Business Practices Committee of the National Press Photographers Association. We intend for this to be a living document, to be updated with new ideas. We welcome input. Our targets are fairness and practicality, two concepts we believe are intertwined in the business of the Fourth Estate. We endorse these practices because we believe professional relationships based on fair exchange, respect and the truth are essential for collecting and disseminating visual reports that are fair, honest and insightful. And we believe our audiences deserve nothing less.

Endorsements:

The NPPA Business Practices Committee
Greg Smith (chairman), Steve Berman, Dirck Halstead, Jeff Roberts, Joseph Sorentino, Brian Storm and Jim Sulley
The NPPA Executive Committee
Bob Gould (president), T.C. Baker, Alicia Wagner-Calzada, Sean Elliott, Ron Stover and Todd Stricker
J. Bruce Baumann
Ken Cooke, retired freelance, former NPPA president
Kenny Irby, visual journalism group leader, The Poynter Institute
Ed Kashi, photojournalist
Mark Loundy, photography business columnist
Maria Mann, director of photography, global current events, Corbis
Scott Mc Kiernan, director/founder, Zuma Press Inc.
Julianne H. Newton, editor, Visual Communication Quarterly
Selina Oppenheim, consultant/author, Port Authority Inc.,
David Rees, director, Pictures of the Year; associate professor, University of Missouri School of Journalism
Rick Rickman, photojournalist

Best Practices for Working with Independent Photojournalists

  1. Follow ethical practices in business relationships, as you would in reporting -- including telling the complete truth and adhering to the NPPA Code of Ethics.
    1. Be honest and up front about assignment requirements, risks and rewards.
    2. If your organization requires a contract, be clear about this from the beginning. Do not expect photographers to sign contracts on the day of an assignment. The necessary usage rights should be part of the initial negotiations, along with the fees.
  2. Pay fair rates for the value that you and your organization receive.
    1. Recognize an independent photographer’s costs add up to much more than staff salary.
    2. Value comprises more than costs, including such factors as image uniqueness, the size an image is used, its prominence, circulation/viewer numbers and more.
    3. Pay space rates for value exceeding an assignment fee.
    4. Expenses should be paid fairly and promptly, including mileage fees at least equal to IRS rates, and markups for supplies photographers must purchase in advance, test and inventory.
    5. Digital capture saves publications time and money. It costs photographers both. Digital rental and production fees are appropriate charges that should be paid.
    6. Each assignment requires preparation and follow-up and precludes scheduling other projects. If an independent photographer competently covers multiple assignments in a single day, he/she has earned multiple assignment fees.
    7. Long days (over 8 hours) deserve additional fees.
    8. Travel, pre- and post-production time should be paid with at least half the assignment day rate.
    9. Pay additional fees for high-risk assignments--such as combat and disaster coverage--which carry more potential costs to photographers and provide higher value to media clients.
  3. Contract only for the rights you clearly need and pay accordingly.
    1. Industry standard has been that a freelance news assignment includes one-time publication rights. Without a written agreement to the contrary, this is what you are licensing.
    2. Work-for-hire contracts are inappropriate for freelance news photography.
    3. Use of images and footage in multiple media should be compensated with multiplied licensing fees.
    4. Reuse and multiple uses (including tables of contents) should be compensated with additional fees.
    5. Embargoes affect the value of news images. They should represent (beyond first use) no more than two news cycles (e.g., two days for a daily newspaper or broadcast; two weeks for a weekly magazine or broadcast).
    6. Work contracted for “first use” should not be unreasonably embargoed. When it is clear images or footage will not be used in a reasonable period, release them to the photographer for resale.
    7. Contract for reuse of images in advance of the reuse.
    8. “Fair use” of images under copyright law is a gray area that requires a detailed examination of all facts relating to a specific use. There is no blanket exemption under the Copyright for any type of use.
  4. Loyalty and professionalism go both ways. Take care of those you hire.
    1. Specify assignment details in writing. Ensure photographers understand what is needed to complete an assignment competently and safely.
    2. Do not take unfair advantage of a photographer who is new to the business. Photographers worth hiring once are likely to be worth hiring again. Helping them get established means they may still be in business when you need them again.
    3. Don’t send photographers into unreasonably dangerous situations. Help photographers extract themselves and their equipment when they get in trouble.
    4. When those you trust enough to hire find themselves in a dispute, give them first benefit of any doubt.
    5. Be sure both you and the photographer have all information needed to get the photographer paid. Promptly and properly forward all requests for payment – and follow up.
    6. Do not ask photographers to indemnify your organization for circumstances beyond their control.
  5. Credit photographers accurately and legibly, adjacent to pictures or in broadcast credits. Expect multiplied fees or legal action for failing to do so.
    1. Make sure copyright, caption and credit data are included in data layers of any archived image files.
    2. Lobby for prominent credit for picture stories and other special uses.

Best Practices for Independent Photojournalists

  1. Be honest. Seek the truth. Be ethical.
    1. Learn and follow the NPPA Code of Ethics. (See www.nppa.org/professional_development/business_practices/ethics)
    2. Seek pictures that tell the story you see, not merely what you’re assigned or expect. Avoid scenes that unfairly portray situations or subjects.
    3. Be aware of your conflicts of interest and how they might affect your coverage. Manage them effectively, and decline assignments when you have a conflict or the appearance of one.
    4. Inform your client if you have a business relationship with a potential subject.
    5. Realize your actions – or lack thereof – can affect the entire profession of photojournalism: our reputation, our effectiveness, our access, our rights to our images and our compensation rates.
  2. Know your craft and practice it to the best of your abilities on all assignments.
    1. Promise only what you can deliver.
    2. Have the right tools – including cameras, maps, communications tools, transportation, consumables, protective clothing, emergency supplies and backups – available for the job. Charge accordingly.
    3. Do your homework. Know your subject, its location, its significance and any risks it poses.
    4. Be clear about rights licensed, fees, expenses and responsibilities before accepting an assignment.
    5. Invoice promptly and accurately. Know and follow the invoicing procedures required by your client.
    6. Gather and deliver accurate, complete caption information. Spelling and grammar count.
    7. Organize image and media files in safe places, so they are available for reuse and licensing to others.
  3. Represent yourself and your client in a professional and appropriate manner.
    1. Dress appropriately for the assignment or situation.
    2. Identify yourself as agreed to with your client.
    3. Treat your subjects with appropriate respect and courtesy.
    4. Do not take sides or display bias.
    5. Do not abuse media privileges.
    6. Maintain a clear paper trail for every assignment or stock license, including agreements before assignments or sales, delivery memos, invoices and any follow up.
    7. Include your copyright information along with caption and capture data in all digital image files.
  4. Understand your costs and the value of your work. Charge appropriately.
    1. Costs include both assignment expenses and your underlying cost of doing business. (See www.nppa.org/ professional_development/business_practices/cdb)
    2. Value is dependent upon image distribution (circulation/viewership), type of use (advertising is much more valuable than editorial), prominence (size, page position and/or time on screen) and image uniqueness/quality.
    3. Reuse and multiple uses should be compensated with additional or higher fees than one-time rights.
    4. Existing (stock) photography represents additional client value, since its quality and appropriateness are clear before licensing.
    5. Undercutting the market undercuts your future. It’s very hard to raise fees once you’re known as cheap, and if others lower fees to match yours, raising your rates can become impossible.
    6. Carry adequate insurance for yourself, your business and your equipment against hazards and errors.
  5. Understand copyright; work with a fair contract.
    1. Register your images as “unpublished” before publication or as “published” within 90 days of first publication to receive full protection under U.S. Copyright law. (See www.nppa.org/professional_development/business_ practices/copyright)
    2. Use your attorney-approved contract for every assignment, specifying rights granted, any embargoes, your responsibilities, payment terms, credit language, governing law, limits to liability and other details.
    3. Seek legal help from attorneys, not photographers.
    4. Work-for-hire is for employees. It is not for independent contractors.
    5. Contracts are by definition negotiable. Walk away from “non-negotiable” offers that don’t meet your needs.
    6. Oral contracts can be difficult or impossible to enforce. Be sure all agreements are in writing and everything agrees with your oral understandings.
    7. “Fair use” of images under copyright law is a gray area that requires a detailed examination of all facts relating to a specific use. There is no blanket exemption under the Copyright for any type of use.
    8. Do not send bills for unauthorized uses. Talk to an attorney. Rumors that unauthorized or miscredited uses command double or triple usage fees are just that. Every situation is different and copyright violations can be far more expensive.
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Call For Entries For The UNFPA's "Family Of Woman" Photography Exhibit

CHEVY CHASE, MD  – Sue Wood, creative director for Wood Communications, has announced a Call For Entries for the photography exhibit "Family of Woman," a project of the U.S. Committee for the Untied Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). The exhibit is used as a vehicle to raise awareness in the States of UNFPA's work. UNFPA provides reproductive health information and care, promotes women's rights, and prevents violence against women in more than 140 countries, and is the largest multilateral source of such assistance.

"'Family of Woman' uses photographs to explain the vast array of work UNFPA undertakes and the success of the programs," Wood said. "The exhibit will be at the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles, California from April 12 through May 12, 2005. The opening event is a cocktail party whose honorary committee includes influential people in California's business, political, and entertainment arenas."

"We hope to have a showing of about 30 photographs. Wood Communications has been retained to curate the show," she said. "We are looking for beautiful photographs from professional photographers that will help show how women live around the world. These should be hopeful photographs, even when the subject matter is not always upbeat."

"For example, women in affluent countries consider agrarian work to be tedious and dull, but women's lives are usually not in a constant state of drudgery. We are really looking for images that portray the dignity of a woman. Specifically, we could use photographs of women in Asia, the Pacific, Africa, South and Central America, the Caribbean, and the former Eastern bloc countries. Women could be urbanites, village dwellers, part of the majority, or members of a minority tribe. Portraits (close-up head and shoulder shots) are discouraged," Wood said.

Deadline for submitting photographs is March 4, 2005. Photographers who are interested in participating in the "Family of Woman" exhibit should contact Wood at +1.301.986.5309 or via eMail at [email protected] "For initial submission, low resolution scans and compressed files can be sent via eMail. Along with the photographs, a brief biography should be included," she said.

The U.S. Committee for the UNFPA and Wood Communications will select final images for the show. When final images are selected, they will require a high-resolution scan (burned to a CD-ROM), prints, and/or professional 35mm duplicate slides. "We will handle the printing and production costs for mounting the exhibit," Wood said.

"The U.S. Committee for the UNFPA intends to exhibit the images at the Pacific Design Center exhibit from April 12 to May 12, 2005. Our plan is to take this show to other cities in the United States (however there is nothing else scheduled at this time). But in order to keep our costs down and to avoid the hassles of re-organizing a new exhibit each year, we would like the right to exhibit these images in upcoming shows. Of course the photographer will receive a credit in the interpretive copy, which will be displayed alongside the photographs during the exhibit."

"We will not reproduce any of the images contributed to the show without the written permission of the photographer," Wood said in the Call For Entries. "We are producing a hand-out with biographies on all the photographers. We are also planning to promote the event in the local Los Angeles press. So we expect media to be at the show - if not at the actual opening on April 12 - then certainly at the show throughout the month."

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Photojournalist Arrested At Crime Scene; Two Police Officers Shot, Suspect Shoots Himself

(Story update: The Tribune reported on January 18 that managing editor Jim Robertson and photojournalist Don Shrubshell met with the Boone County prosecuting attorney, Kevin Crane, and the arresting officer and the officer’s sergeant. Crane said he would not pursue charges against Shrubshell for being inside a restricted zone while walking to his car. Shrubshell is quoted in the Tribune’s story as saying, "It was somewhat of a misunderstanding on both sides.")

COLUMBIA, MO – As police in Columbia, MO, worked Tuesday to unravel a two-day incident that left two of their officers shot and seriously wounded by a young male suspect, who in turn mortally wounded himself with a shot to the head as he was chased,Columbia Daily Tribune staff photojournalist Don Shrubshell, 49, found himself under arrest at one of the incident’s two crime scenes on the west side of town.

Police claim that Shrubshell "entered a cordoned-off crime scene" along Columbia’s Worley Street where police were searching for evidence and that Shrubshell was arrested on "suspicion of obstructing a government operation," the newspaper reported. The Tribune quotes Columbia police officer Todd Smith as saying Shrubshell was "interfering with our investigation." The charge is a misdemeanor under Missouri law punishable by up to six months in jail and a $500 fine. The Tribune said officer Smith said that Shrubshell had been told several times to stay behind the taped-off area. (Photograph at bottom of the story.)

The man suspected of shooting both officers, Richard "Rick" T. Evans, 23, died Tuesday evening at University Hospital in Columbia. TheTribune reported that one officer is recovering "very well" but that the other officer's outlook "remains critical" following several surgeries.

"I think tension was running high among the Columbia police following two officers who were shot on Monday night and Tuesday morning," Shrubshell told News Photographer today. "I approached the crime scene and came upon officers who were diverting traffic from the scene. There was no crime scene tape strung before I approached the top of the hill – which was about one and a half blocks from the crime scene, which was at the bottom of a hill. A Columbia police officer told me to get back behind the police car, which I did. Another officer began to string police tape across the road."

"I asked if there was a public information officer available and an officer yelled it was too early for that. Officer Todd Smith told me not to take pictures and moved in front of me to block my view. He was about six feet away from me on the other side of the newly strung police tape. I asked him to not block my view. I moved a few feet to the right and he would also move to be in front of me. I moved to the left and he moved again to block my view. I turned to walk away from the officer and walked down the hill. I circled around to find another way to the crime scene that didn't have crime scene tape," Shrubshell said.

"I walked through the yards of some nearby apartment buildings and found detectives working the crime scene. I took a few pictures from a woman's back porch. At that time there was no crime scene tape on the side of the crime scene that I approached. I began talking to neighbors to learn what they heard or saw. When I walked back to the area of the crime scene the cops had strung tape on the side where I was taking pictures from."

The setting that Shrubshell was trying to photograph was the location where a bizarre incident that started on Monday evening on a neighborhood street ended on Tuesday morning in the backyards of homes. Police said that on Monday night officer Molly Bowden, 26, made a traffic stop in a residential neighborhood. The driver, Evans, talked with her and handed over his license and registration, police said, before pulling out a gun and shooting at her.

Videotape from a camera in Bowden’s squad car apparently shows Bowden retreating from the gunfire and trying to take cover behind the suspect’s vehicle as he comes out of the car and shoots twice, wounding her. Then the suspect walked over to her behind the car to where she was already down on the ground and fired two more shots at her at close range before he got back in his car and fled the scene, police said. Neighborhood residents saw the police car sitting with its flashing lights on, then saw the wounded officer lying in the road. The civilians used the car’s police radio to tell the dispatcher that the officer had been shot.

Officer Bowden remains in critical but stable condition following several operations for multiple bullet wounds in her neck and shoulders, Columbia's police chief said Tuesday. She was wearing body armor, the chief said, but the wounds to her neck and shoulders were all above the area covered by the vest. She is married to another Columbia city police officer, Corey Bowden.

A manhunt for Evans followed the shooting and it ended Tuesday morning when police spotted him returning to his parent’s home in Columbia. Police officer Curtis Brown, 36, chased Evans as he ran through the backyards of neighborhood homes. Police said Evans fired once at officer Brown, hitting him in the upper right arm. Evans then turned the gun on himself and fired one shot into his head. Officer Brown is in stable condition following surgery on his arm and recovering well, the Tribune reported. Evans died at 4:50 p.m. as a result of the self-inflicted gunshot.

Shrubshell’s arrest marked the second time in as many weeks that a Missouri photojournalist has been arrested while on the job. On New Year’s Day, St. Louis Post-Dispatch photojournalist Gabriel Tait was arrested while photographing an auto accident on Interstate 70 in the St. Louis suburb of Berkeley, MO. The Post-Dispatch reported that Tait’s face was slammed against the hood of an emergency vehicle as he was handcuffed and arrested, and that police said Tait was arrested for "failing to follow orders given to him by officers at the scene."

Yesterday morning in Columbia at the backyard crime scene where officer Brown was shot and where Evans shot himself, Shrubshell was trying to take pictures of the investigation and had not yet been arrested. "About 15 minutes later (after the yellow tape went up) other members of the media found their way to my position and began videotaping. None of the officers had a problem with that and they were aware of our presence. After several minutes of photographing the crime scene I circled the scene, staying outside of the yellow crime scene tape," the photographer said today. "I took more pictures from another angle – still outside the crime scene tape. I began to leave the area to go back to my car."

"I did not enter the taped off crime scene where detectives were looking for shell casings. I stayed outside the crime scene tape as did other members of the media," Shrubshell explained to News Photographer. "There was a yellow police tape about two blocks from the crime scene to keep people from going down the hill to the crime scene. I did not cross that tape. I approached the crime scene from a northern direction and found the initial crime scene with tape around it. I took pictures and soon other members of the media found me and followed. We were all outside the crime scene tape."

"I was leaving the crime scene by walking directly away from it when I topped the hill and saw that the first crime scene yellow tape was still up and no officers were around it. No officers were at the top of hill where officer Smith had been standing in front of me. I was more than two blocks from the crime scene headed to my car when the officer yelled at me while he was returning to the top of the hill. He yelled at me to stop. I really don't think he knew I had already been to the crime scene with other media and that I was returning to my car. He grabbed me and escorted me a few feet to the crime scene tape that blocked the road."

The Tribune reported Tuesday that at least seven reporters and photographers were interviewing neighborhood residents and covering the scene from behind the yellow police tape in a multi-block area when Shrubshell was arrested. The newspaper reported that officer Smith escorted another police officer into the sealed area and then turned around to see Shrubshell inside the perimeter as the photographer turned and began walking away. The newspaper story says Smith said he told Shrubshell that he was under arrest, but that Shrubshell continued to walk away. Smith told the Tribune that he caught up with Shrubshell and physically stopped him and, along with two other officers, arrested him.

"Two other officers appeared and they began to arrest me," Shrubshell said. "I called my photo editor, Brian Kratzer, to tell him I was being arrested and was told to lay the phone on the ground. I did so and Kratzer listened as I was arrested. The cop was really upset and told me to set my camera gear on the ground. As I tried to lay the camera bag down he jerked the camera from over my head, hitting me in the side of the head. I told him he didn't have to hit me with my own camera and he said it was an accident. I was taken to the police department and booked."

"I honestly think the cop had no idea that I was already at the crime scene and was leaving the area when he arrested me. In 25 years of photojournalism I’ve run into a few less-than-professional cops, as I think everyone has who’s in this business. But most of the cops I have worked with here in Columbia are nice guys and give me the space to do my job."

On Tuesday the Tribune’s managing editor, Jim Robertson, was quoted in the paper’s coverage of the shootings and in a story about the photographer's arrest as saying that he didn’t have enough information yet to judge whether Shrubshell’s arrest was appropriate. "It’s an unfortunate incident, and we’ll look at what we could have done differently," Robertson said. By Wednesday, Robertson took a more solid position in defending the staff photographer. "Shrubshell was doing his job," Robertson said in the paper's story today. "He was leaving the scene, so obstruction seems unlikely. He won't be disciplined."

Boone County prosecuting attorney Kevin Crane told Tribune staff writer Chuck Adamson on Wednesday that he hasn't reached a decision about filing criminal charges against Shrubshell. Adamson also said that his office has not yet received a police complaint from the arresting officers.

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Special Reid Blackburn Internship, Scholarship Marks 25th Anniversary Of Mount St. Helen's Photographer

VANCOUVER, WA  – The Columbian newspaper of Vancouver, WA, is offering a special summer 2005 photography internship in memory of the 25th anniversary of the death of staff photographer Reid Blackburn.

Blackburn, 27, a staff photographer at The Columbian, died May 18, 1980 while on assignment covering the eruption of Mount St. Helens. A graduate of Linfield College in Oregon, he had been with the newspaper for five years.

The newspaper has sponsored the $2,000 Reid Blackburn Scholarship for several years. The winner of the internship will be selected from the scholarship applicants. However, the winner of the scholarship will not necessarily receive the internship.

The internship runs June 1 through August 31, 2005. The person selected will be provided with some Nikon digital equipment to use during the internship, and they will be offered the opportunity to work as a full-fledged member of the photography staff.

"There will be many good portfolio-building assignments," said Columbian photographer Jeremiah Coughlan, who is in charge of the scholarship. "They will get hands-on experience and the opportunity to work with a very seasoned staff."

For more information and application materials, please go to www.nppa.org and then click on "Professional Development," and then "Students," and then on "Scholarships". Deadline for application is March 1.

Questions about the internship should be directed by eMail only to [email protected]

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Photojournalist Arrested At Crime Scene; Two Police Officers Shot, Suspect Shoots Himself

(Story update: The Tribune reported on January 18 that managing editor Jim Robertson and photojournalist Don Shrubshell met with the Boone County prosecuting attorney, Kevin Crane, and the arresting officer and the officer’s sergeant. Crane said he would not pursue charges against Shrubshell for being inside a restricted zone while walking to his car. Shrubshell is quoted in the Tribune’s story as saying, "It was somewhat of a misunderstanding on both sides.")

COLUMBIA, MO – As police in Columbia, MO, worked Tuesday to unravel a two-day incident that left two of their officers shot and seriously wounded by a young male suspect, who in turn mortally wounded himself with a shot to the head as he was chased,Columbia Daily Tribune staff photojournalist Don Shrubshell, 49, found himself under arrest at one of the incident’s two crime scenes on the west side of town.

Police claim that Shrubshell "entered a cordoned-off crime scene" along Columbia’s Worley Street where police were searching for evidence and that Shrubshell was arrested on "suspicion of obstructing a government operation," the newspaper reported. The Tribune quotes Columbia police officer Todd Smith as saying Shrubshell was "interfering with our investigation." The charge is a misdemeanor under Missouri law punishable by up to six months in jail and a $500 fine. The Tribune said officer Smith said that Shrubshell had been told several times to stay behind the taped-off area. (Photograph at bottom of the story.)

The man suspected of shooting both officers, Richard "Rick" T. Evans, 23, died Tuesday evening at University Hospital in Columbia. TheTribune reported that one officer is recovering "very well" but that the other officer's outlook "remains critical" following several surgeries.

"I think tension was running high among the Columbia police following two officers who were shot on Monday night and Tuesday morning," Shrubshell told News Photographer today. "I approached the crime scene and came upon officers who were diverting traffic from the scene. There was no crime scene tape strung before I approached the top of the hill – which was about one and a half blocks from the crime scene, which was at the bottom of a hill. A Columbia police officer told me to get back behind the police car, which I did. Another officer began to string police tape across the road."

"I asked if there was a public information officer available and an officer yelled it was too early for that. Officer Todd Smith told me not to take pictures and moved in front of me to block my view. He was about six feet away from me on the other side of the newly strung police tape. I asked him to not block my view. I moved a few feet to the right and he would also move to be in front of me. I moved to the left and he moved again to block my view. I turned to walk away from the officer and walked down the hill. I circled around to find another way to the crime scene that didn't have crime scene tape," Shrubshell said.

"I walked through the yards of some nearby apartment buildings and found detectives working the crime scene. I took a few pictures from a woman's back porch. At that time there was no crime scene tape on the side of the crime scene that I approached. I began talking to neighbors to learn what they heard or saw. When I walked back to the area of the crime scene the cops had strung tape on the side where I was taking pictures from."

The setting that Shrubshell was trying to photograph was the location where a bizarre incident that started on Monday evening on a neighborhood street ended on Tuesday morning in the backyards of homes. Police said that on Monday night officer Molly Bowden, 26, made a traffic stop in a residential neighborhood. The driver, Evans, talked with her and handed over his license and registration, police said, before pulling out a gun and shooting at her.

Videotape from a camera in Bowden’s squad car apparently shows Bowden retreating from the gunfire and trying to take cover behind the suspect’s vehicle as he comes out of the car and shoots twice, wounding her. Then the suspect walked over to her behind the car to where she was already down on the ground and fired two more shots at her at close range before he got back in his car and fled the scene, police said. Neighborhood residents saw the police car sitting with its flashing lights on, then saw the wounded officer lying in the road. The civilians used the car’s police radio to tell the dispatcher that the officer had been shot.

Officer Bowden remains in critical but stable condition following several operations for multiple bullet wounds in her neck and shoulders, Columbia's police chief said Tuesday. She was wearing body armor, the chief said, but the wounds to her neck and shoulders were all above the area covered by the vest. She is married to another Columbia city police officer, Corey Bowden.

A manhunt for Evans followed the shooting and it ended Tuesday morning when police spotted him returning to his parent’s home in Columbia. Police officer Curtis Brown, 36, chased Evans as he ran through the backyards of neighborhood homes. Police said Evans fired once at officer Brown, hitting him in the upper right arm. Evans then turned the gun on himself and fired one shot into his head. Officer Brown is in stable condition following surgery on his arm and recovering well, the Tribune reported. Evans died at 4:50 p.m. as a result of the self-inflicted gunshot.

Shrubshell’s arrest marked the second time in as many weeks that a Missouri photojournalist has been arrested while on the job. On New Year’s Day, St. Louis Post-Dispatch photojournalist Gabriel Tait was arrested while photographing an auto accident on Interstate 70 in the St. Louis suburb of Berkeley, MO. The Post-Dispatch reported that Tait’s face was slammed against the hood of an emergency vehicle as he was handcuffed and arrested, and that police said Tait was arrested for "failing to follow orders given to him by officers at the scene."

Yesterday morning in Columbia at the backyard crime scene where officer Brown was shot and where Evans shot himself, Shrubshell was trying to take pictures of the investigation and had not yet been arrested. "About 15 minutes later (after the yellow tape went up) other members of the media found their way to my position and began videotaping. None of the officers had a problem with that and they were aware of our presence. After several minutes of photographing the crime scene I circled the scene, staying outside of the yellow crime scene tape," the photographer said today. "I took more pictures from another angle – still outside the crime scene tape. I began to leave the area to go back to my car."

"I did not enter the taped off crime scene where detectives were looking for shell casings. I stayed outside the crime scene tape as did other members of the media," Shrubshell explained to News Photographer. "There was a yellow police tape about two blocks from the crime scene to keep people from going down the hill to the crime scene. I did not cross that tape. I approached the crime scene from a northern direction and found the initial crime scene with tape around it. I took pictures and soon other members of the media found me and followed. We were all outside the crime scene tape."

"I was leaving the crime scene by walking directly away from it when I topped the hill and saw that the first crime scene yellow tape was still up and no officers were around it. No officers were at the top of hill where officer Smith had been standing in front of me. I was more than two blocks from the crime scene headed to my car when the officer yelled at me while he was returning to the top of the hill. He yelled at me to stop. I really don't think he knew I had already been to the crime scene with other media and that I was returning to my car. He grabbed me and escorted me a few feet to the crime scene tape that blocked the road."

The Tribune reported Tuesday that at least seven reporters and photographers were interviewing neighborhood residents and covering the scene from behind the yellow police tape in a multi-block area when Shrubshell was arrested. The newspaper reported that officer Smith escorted another police officer into the sealed area and then turned around to see Shrubshell inside the perimeter as the photographer turned and began walking away. The newspaper story says Smith said he told Shrubshell that he was under arrest, but that Shrubshell continued to walk away. Smith told the Tribune that he caught up with Shrubshell and physically stopped him and, along with two other officers, arrested him.

"Two other officers appeared and they began to arrest me," Shrubshell said. "I called my photo editor, Brian Kratzer, to tell him I was being arrested and was told to lay the phone on the ground. I did so and Kratzer listened as I was arrested. The cop was really upset and told me to set my camera gear on the ground. As I tried to lay the camera bag down he jerked the camera from over my head, hitting me in the side of the head. I told him he didn't have to hit me with my own camera and he said it was an accident. I was taken to the police department and booked."

"I honestly think the cop had no idea that I was already at the crime scene and was leaving the area when he arrested me. In 25 years of photojournalism I’ve run into a few less-than-professional cops, as I think everyone has who’s in this business. But most of the cops I have worked with here in Columbia are nice guys and give me the space to do my job."

On Tuesday the Tribune’s managing editor, Jim Robertson, was quoted in the paper’s coverage of the shootings and in a story about the photographer's arrest as saying that he didn’t have enough information yet to judge whether Shrubshell’s arrest was appropriate. "It’s an unfortunate incident, and we’ll look at what we could have done differently," Robertson said. By Wednesday, Robertson took a more solid position in defending the staff photographer. "Shrubshell was doing his job," Robertson said in the paper's story today. "He was leaving the scene, so obstruction seems unlikely. He won't be disciplined."

Boone County prosecuting attorney Kevin Crane told Tribune staff writer Chuck Adamson on Wednesday that he hasn't reached a decision about filing criminal charges against Shrubshell. Adamson also said that his office has not yet received a police complaint from the arresting officers.

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Photojournalist Gabriel Tait Arrested At Accident Scene

On New Year’s Day, St. Louis Post-Dispatch photojournalist Gabriel Tait parked about a quarter of a mile away from a traffic accident on Interstate 70 and got out of his car to walk to the scene to take pictures near Berkeley, MO, a northwest suburb about 15 minutes from the heart of downtown St. Louis. Minutes later, instead of taking photographs, a Berkeley police officer was slamming Tait’s face against the hood of an emergency vehicle while arresting him, the NPPA Region 7 Clip Contest Chairman told his managers and coworkers after he was released from jail.

Yesterday NPPA vice president and NPPA Advocacy Chair Alicia Wagner Calzada sent a notice of NPPA support to Tait and to St. Louis Post-Dispatch photography director Larry Coyne and managing editor Arnie Robbins. "We are outraged at the manner in which your rights were violated while you were doing your job," the message said. "Overzealous and unconstitutional actions by the police against photographers are far too common."

Tait flew to Seattle today to cover this weekend’s St. Louis Rams NFL football wildcard playoff game against the Seahawks. Reached by telephone and asked how he’s feeling, Tait said, "I’m up and I’m down. I was up at 2 a.m. today because I couldn’t sleep. But then I got some sleep on the plane. It’s really hard to find a balance between how some people think it’s kind of funny and other people think it’s more serious, when I feel like it’s kind of serious. I really thought they (the police) would come to their senses, but the ball just kept rolling downhill."

On Saturday, Tait spent four hours in jail before being released on a $500 cash bond, a story yesterday in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch by reporter Sylvester Brown Jr. said. Brown wrote that the incident Saturday afternoon started when Tait responded to a radio report of an accident, and as he walked up to the scene Tait said an approaching police officer yelled, "You’re not allowed to take pictures here." Tait said he responded, "I’m from the Post-Dispatch, sir, and this is an accident." Tait said it was then that other officers joined in ordering him to stop taking photographs and to leave.

When Tait again tried to identify himself, the story says, he was handcuffed — but he still managed to push a button on his cell phone that placed a call to Sid Hastings, the assistant director of photography at the newspaper. Brown’s story says that Hastings could hear Tait yelling, "Sid, Sid, they’re harassing me!" and "Officer, does this mean you’re taking me into custody?" Tait told Brown that the police turned off the cell phone at that point, and that he was arrested and taken to the Berkeley police station and his photography equipment was confiscated.

The account of how police treated Tait up to this point is disturbing enough, but Brown’s story adds even more striking details about how the event continued to unfold after Tait’s arrest. An officer threatened to bring felony charges against Tait if he didn’t sign a paper that incorrectly identified his confiscated belongings," the story says. Also, Tait told his managers on the day after the incident, one officer told a colleague that he would gladly "take a day off" and come in to "help take him (Tait) down" if necessary, presumably meaning to appear as a witness or to go to court in support of the arresting officers.

"Your case is particularly disturbing because of the abuse and threats that you report," NPPA’s Calzada wrote in the Advocacy Committee’s message to Tait. NPPA’s Advocacy Committee was created in November 2003 to promote awareness and timely responses to issues threatening news photographers. "We are thankful that you are fighting this and that your newspaper is supporting you so vigorously. Each incident like this has a great effect on all photographers, not just the one involved. We stand with you and are available to assist you and your newspaper in whatever way we are able."

Brown’s story quotes Berkeley Police Captain Frank McCall as saying that Tait was arrested because he failed to follow the orders given by officers at the scene. "It was hard to get emergency vehicles to the scene," the story quotes McCall. "It was no place for people to be standing around." McCall said Berkeley police would file a misdemeanor charge in municipal court against the photographer, and that could result in a fine.

Tait’s digital images on his camera’s memory disc, examined later at the newspaper after he was released and his equipment returned, show that he was a "significant distance from the accident scene," the story says. Hastings, who is Tait’s supervisor, is also quoted in the story defending the photojournalist and his actions.

Brown, who worked with Tait on a story as recently as last week, managed to find some humor in the incident to weave into his report. "He (Tait) added that police made him pose for a (booking) mug shot five or six times because he smiled for the camera. ‘I smiled because the whole thing was silly,’ he said."

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Veteran Employees Surprised By Rapid Firings When Paxton Buys Herald-Sun

When the sale of the 50,000 circulation Herald-Sun in Durham, NC, went through on Monday morning and the new owners, the Paxton Media Group LLC of Paduch, KY, took over as the deal closed, the newspaper’s four top managers were fired within minutes and escorted from the building without their belongings.

Then later Monday the new owners started firing employees, up to 25% of the newspaper’s more than 350 workers, including NPPA life member Harold Moore, 70, the Herald-Sun’s director of photography and an employee of the Herald-Sun for more than 50 years.

Less than 30 minutes after the sale closed, the surprised president and publisher, David Hughey, vice president and treasurer James Alexander, vice president of sales and marketing Toby Barfield, and executive editor and vice president William Hawkins were fired and then escorted from the building.

As the day progressed many more shocked employees were given word of their own firing and then taken out of the building. They were not allowed to clean out their desks or pack personal property or say goodbye to coworkers, according to multiple news reports. A story by Julia Lewis on WRAL-TV in Durham quoted one of the fired senior executives, Toby Barfield, who said, "They said you can’t touch the computer, you can’t touch the phone, you have to leave right now. We had no idea that 30 minutes after the sale our heads would start rolling."

After the executives were axed, then as many as 80 other selected employees found out that they were fired as well. Moore, a veteran of five decades at the Herald-Sun who joined NPPA in February 1956, was quoted Tuesday in Raleigh's News & Observer as saying, "I was planning to retire before long anyway, but I would have like to have left with some dignity." The News & Observer story also said that Monday evening several employees were huddled together in the parking lot, some crying.

The Herald-Sun has been owned for 115 years by the family of E.T. Rollins Jr. of Durham. It was one of the last independently owned newspapers in North Carolina. Rumors surfaced around Thanksgiving that the newspaper might be for sale. On December 3rd the sale to Paxton was announced to employees who were called to a gathering in the newsroom. And then this week, just one month after the newsroom announcement and on the morning the deal closed, senior managers and employees were fired as ownership changed hands. The sale price was not disclosed.

Paxton Media Group LLC is a privately held company that owns 28 daily newspapers, weekly publications, and a television station. TheHerald-Sun is its 29th daily newspaper and it takes its place as the largest property in the Paxton stable of daily newspapers. David Paxton is the company’s president and chief executive officer. Paxton Media also owns North Carolina newspapers in Forest City, Henderson, High Point, Lenoir, Monroe, and Sanford.

Paxton has a history of firing top managers and employees when they purchase newspapers. When they purchased the High Point Enterprisein High Point, NC, in 2004 they fired the managing editor, the general manager, and 20 employees.

Tuesday in the Herald-Sun’s own story about Paxton’s purchase of the newspaper, Paxton representatives called the firings "layoffs" and said they were part of a "sweeping corporate restructuring that included a new publisher and a new top editor." The story called the firings "job eliminations." The newsroom previously employed 87 people, the story said, adding that 17 of the newsroom positions have now been cut by the restructuring.

Three top editors from a Paxton newspaper in Kentucky have been appointed to run the Herald-Sun. Robert Childress is the newspaper's new publisher and Bob Ashley was named the newspaper’s new editor. Childress was publisher of the Paxton’s Owensboro, KY, Messenger-Inquirer and Ashley was the Messenger-Inquirer’s editor. Also coming along with them from Owensboro is Elaine Morgan, who will replace theHerald-Sun’s advertising director.

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Susan Sontag, 71, Author Of On Photography, Dies In New York

Susan Sontag, the social critic, human rights activist, and author whose theories and writing influenced the way many perceive the role of photography and modern photojournalism, died of leukemia today in her hometown, New York City. She was 71.

Sontag’s classic book On Photography (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1973) investigated the role of images in society, the intersection of news and "art," and the visual depiction of war and disaster. Two decades later she refuted some of her previous ideas in a new book, Regarding the Pain of Others (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2003), where she called into question the use and meaning of images, particularly those of war and suffering, and the motivations of those who make and view the images.

In an essay "Regarding the Torture of Others" in The New York Times in May 2004, Sontag wrote about the photographs of prisoner abuse at the Abu Ghraib jail in Baghdad, that the snapshots — taken by soldiers, not photojournalists — would likely become the defining images of the Iraqi war. She wrote, "For a long time — at least six decades — photographs have laid down the tracks of how important conflicts are judged and remembered. The Western memory museum is now mostly a visual one. Photographs have an insuperable power to determine what we recall of events, and it now seems probably that the defining association of people everywhere with the war that the United States launched pre-emptively in Iraq last year will be photographs of torture of Iraqi prisoners by Americans in the most infamous of Saddam Hussein’s prisons, Abu Ghraib."

In the Times essay she also wrote, "The pictures taken by American soldiers in Abu Ghraib, however, reflect a shift in the use made of pictures — less objects to be saved than messages to be disseminated, circulated."

Known to the photography world mostly for On Photography and Regarding the Pain of Others, Sontag’s 17 books — which have been translated into 32 languages — covered a much broader range of topics than just photography. She wrote about politics, pornography, science fiction, and penned four novels. Her work included plays and film scripts and essays for The New Yorker, Granta, and other literary magazines. She wrote and directed four feature-length films, as well as stage plays in the United States and Europe. Among many career awards she won the National Book Critics Circle award in 1977 for On Photography, and the American National Book Award in 2000 for In America, a portrait of the new west of 1876.

Born in New York City on January 16, 1933, Sontag grew up in Arizona and California before going to college at the University of Chicago. She did graduate studies at Harvard, Saint Anne’s College at Oxford, and later at the University of Paris. The Times of London wrote, "Susan Sontag was the most provocative and prolific of the new wave of New York intellectuals who came to prominence in the 1960s and 1970s. Her writing during those years of enormous cultural and political change earned her the sobriquet of ‘the evangelist of the new.'"

Sontag died this morning at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Manhattan, a spokesperson for the hospital told the Associated Press. Sontag’s son, David Rieff, said his mother died from complications caused by acute myelogenous leukemia, and that she had battled cancer on and off since the 1970s, AP reported.

The February 2005 issue of News Photographer magazine will feature a story about Sontag and an examination of On Photography andRegarding the Pain of Others by New York City writer Stephen Wolgast.

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New Captioning Plug-In For Best Of Photojournalism Contest Entries Now Available To Download

DURHAM, NC -- The new software plug-in to use for captioning and preparing still photographic entries for the Best Of Photojournalism 2005 contest is now available for downloading from the NPPA Web site. Please click here to read the plug-in instructions and download the Macintosh or PC version of the application.

BOP will begin accepting online entries beginning January 3, 2005. There are new categories in this year’s contest to reflect two large stories from 2004: the political campaign and elections, and the Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.

This year’s updated contest rules and entry guidelines are also posted online. Please click here for links to the rules and guidelines for each division. If you have any questions, please contact Eric Waters, BOP contest coordinator, at [email protected]

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