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Photo credit within the same company...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by young-gun11, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. young-gun11

    young-gun11 Member

    The company I work for has several newspapers in its chain. We all use a single FTP-like site to share these photos. Today, as I designed my page, I was told the CEO of the company directly told my publisher not to use the photog's name in the byline. Instead, we are to simply put "Photo courtesy of Podunk Times".

    I have a problem with this because I feel like the photog should get credit for their work. While maybe not illegal to leave their name off the byline (although this could be illegal, no?) it seems unethical.

    At a previous chain, we used "Big Chain Photo by Jim Bob Cooter" ...

    How do other chains approach this issue? I would like to have some sort of documentation to show my publisher how others do this same type of thing.
  2. If it's already owned by your company, there's no "courtesy of" needed. Courtesy photos are free handouts.

    Use of a freelance photographer's byline depends on that particular person's contract, but you're talking about staff photographers so the company can do whatever it wants.
  3. young-gun11

    young-gun11 Member

    We've never had a set guideline to follow until now. In the past we've used several things, one of them being "Podunk Times photo". I've even put my paper's name in the byline and used the photog's name just as if that person works for my paper: "Podunk Weekly photo by Jim Bob Cooter"
  4. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    I understand the sentiment, but pick your battles wisely. This doesn't seem like one worth fighting.
  5. joe_schmoe

    joe_schmoe Active Member

    It's a company policy. Your thoughts don't matter.
    There is no law that says a photog has to be credited, just like a reporter doesn't have to be credited. Essentially, they are all employees and the copyright on the work belongs to the company, not the employee.
    It doesn't matter if feel it's right or wrong, it's the publishers call. You can make a case against it, but I wouldn't push the issue.
  6. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    Your paper's policy is whatever your superior says it is.

    I've been in situations where it went something like this:

    Daily Screech photo by Snappy Shooter

    Screech News Service photo by Bigcity Shooter

    Random Stringer/For the Daily Screech

    Handout photo
    Photo courtesy Joe Schmoe PR (agency or individual name)
  7. young-gun11

    young-gun11 Member

    Starman, I appreciate your input. You actually answered my question. Thanks!
  8. JimmyHoward33

    JimmyHoward33 Well-Known Member

    We've always used names in that situation and it seems extremely odd that the CEO would actually be concerned about the wording on a photo byline.

    Having said, echo the idea that there's no moral right/wrong, the policy is whatever the boss says it is, as long as its consistent across all platforms and there's no formal company stylebook that says something else.
  9. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    There is certainly no ironclad industry standard, that's for sure.

    If it's not up to you to decide, do whatever you are told; if you are given some input and want to change something, have a reason to back it up.

    The examples I used above had to do with whether the photos are work-for-hire provided by staff members, content provided by your chain for member papers, stringer photos purchased on a per-piece basis or free material volunteered by outside contributors.
  10. PeterGibbons

    PeterGibbons Member

    This is what we do too
  11. I'll never tell

    I'll never tell Active Member

    CEO is an idiot. Why should a photographer's work be any less worthy of credit than a writer. Put "Story courtesy of Podunk Times" next time you run one if you want prove a point.

    If you're trained as a reporter, first thing they teach you is to ask "Why?" I don't think it's be starting a fight or making a big deal about it if you asked that question to your publisher.

    If that individual doesn't have the balls to ask the CEO, then you learn something about them. If the CEO says, "Cuz I said so," then you know you're working for a dickish asshole.
  12. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    Except you might not be working for the dickish asshole anymore.
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