June 2013

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ATTN: Sun-Times: No one has ever been moved by a moving image.

In a move that can only be defined as disgusting, The Chicago Sun-Times has fired all of its 28 professional photographers opting instead to use freelancers and reporters armed with iPhones. In an effort to improve the company’s standing with its “digitally savvy” readers and a need to transition into more online video, Sun-Times reporters began mandatory iPhone photography basics training . Way to go Sun-Times. Get rid of 28 highly skilled photographers that include a Pulitzer Prize winner who had access to police, fire departments, city officials, etc.,  and in their place turn people who need “photography basics” training into the sources that readers and their “digitally savvy” customers will have to rely upon for visual imagery. So much for quality.

There is a reason reporters are not called photographers. I’m sure some of these reporters have worked alongside those fired photographers for many years. Where is the support? Clearly, solidarity no longer exists.

I cannot imagine that this will turn out well for the Sun-Times. This is a financially unhealthy newspaper  whose imminent demise may come just a bit sooner. At best, this is a stopgap  measure. That will leave Chicago a one paper town and I don’t believe that’s good for anyone.

If I subscribed to the Sun-Times, I would have canceled my subscription upon hearing this news. I wonder though, how many would?

This is a horribly sad occurrence on so many levels.  I am so glad to have been born when I was. I got to see the absolute best of everything and we’re sure as hell not going back.