Concert photographer, where did your integrity go?


"The discussion regarding photo contracts seem to be centered around the idea of the concert photographer as an artist. A photographer, an artist in his own right, should be able to control (and get paid for) his own work. Handing out a contract demanding the photographer to sign away or limit those right, is disrespecting a fellow artist.

"While I, as an artist, fully support that notion, I believe that journalistic integrity should come first. The problem with the above is that not all concert photographers care enough about their work (or monetizing upon it) to defend their rights as long as they get to shoot their favorite band.

"There’s also the problem of some people viewing an artist as somewhat larger than life, where you, as a concert photographer, are lucky to be even in their presence and should adhere to their contracts (rights grab or not) out of sheer honor.

"An artist can be manipulated and bullied into giving up his rights. However, if you have any journalistic integrity at all, it doesn’t matter who you are shooting or what artistic aspirations you may or may not have.

"One of the most important tenets of journalism, is the idea of a free press. That means, as a photojournalist, you can not allow any company, person or artist to decide what you can, or can not capture or publish. Then the press is no longer free, but dictated by external forces. In a free democracy, the public needs to be able to trust that the press acts as a free agent, without any constraints or limitations exerted by external forces."

This hits the nail in the head. Read more, here.