Posts Tagged 'Washington Post'

Paparazzi Living It Up In DC

Photo by Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post

You wouldn’t think Washington, DC has enough sexy people to merit paparazzi. There isn’t really a big market for shots of Paul Ryan getting his haircut. But the Washington Post tells us that is, in fact, the case:

Yes, Washington now has its own homegrown pack of street photographers, a half-dozen or so who make their living selling photos and videos of visiting celebrities to gossip blogs, Web sites and magazines such as People and Us Weekly.

Local photographers have found they can make a great living hunting the haunts of celebrities that come to town to shoot movies or testify on the Hill. And the bonus is there is a lot less competition than in New York and LA, so photographers can make good money. Colin Drummond, the photographer they profiled, makes six figures — and made $50,000 (and counting) from a shot of a visiting Oprah. (OK, the photo also seemed to prove that she has six toes.)

The photographers who work this beat are more aggressive than the press corps Washington is used to, but so far they have not crossed the line into Britney Spears-type stalking. You’d probably get sent to Guantanamo for that, so it’s best not to push it.

“Everybody knows the rules, and to the extent anybody strays from them, we get them in line pretty quickly,” [Senate Sergeant at Arms Terrance W.] Gainer says. “The whole thing you see on television — what goes on in New York and L.A. — may occur on the street, but it’s not an issue up here.”

Source: Washington Post

Intrepid Ice Cream Fan Found, Explained

When Washington Post editors send out a photographer to get the age-old “snow is falling” photo, a coatless man crossing the street with an ice cream cone in hand is not what you expect at all. That’s the shot Ricky Carioti got, which landed on the front page of the Post yesterday. So, naturally, people were curious and amused and, then of course, as what follows in our digitally mad world, they got creative, photoshopping the guy onto nonsensical backdrops.

The WaPo’s Story Lab blog got to the bottom of it: 25-year-old lawyer Zach Burroughs just wanted some ice cream.

Source: Washington Post/Story Lab

Photographers, Police Clash in DC

Photo by Joe in DC

A few weeks back Washington Post writer Annys Shin put the call out for photographers who’d been harassed while photographing federal buildings and landmarks in the DC area. This article is the result. Shin finds out what many of us have known for a while, and that’s while DC may be the country’s seat of power, its law enforcement and security personnel are often woefully lacking in knowledge about laws regarding photography.

This quote from the DC police union president is kind of troubling — and illustrates that, no matter how many articles are written, they still just don’t get it.

“When people see a camera, they get more into it,” said Marcello Muzzatti, president of D.C. Lodge No. 1 of the Fraternal Order of Police, which represents 11,000 officers in more than 100 D.C. and federal agencies. “Some people will figure, ‘I have a right to take pictures,’ and we are not arguing with that. An officer also has a right to his or her safety and to control the situation.”

Be sure to also look at this interesting compilation of the photos that got DC area photographers in trouble with the law.

Article from Washington Post

Why Do Cops Hate Cameras?

Photo by JH

Photographer Jerome Vorus’s exchange with the DC police a few weeks back is getting some play in the DC media, and now Washington Post writer Annys Shin is looking into the topic of police and photography. In a “Story Lab” post she asks, “Why do police hate getting their picture taken?” It’s a good question. If you’re BART cop Johannes Mehserle, it might be because you don’t want any evidence if you just happen to break the law. (Although video didn’t help that New York City bicyclist who got pummeled by the rookie cop in Times Square.)

The DCPD have no excuse though. They’re just misinformed. And misinformation + arrogance = abuse of power.

Shin (shina AT wants to hear from you if you’ve been harassed or detained while taking photos of police, government buildings and the like in the DC metro area.

WaPo Photog Breaks Rules for Hinckley Shot

Photo by erin m

In his column this week, Washington Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander took on an incident of staff photographer Gerald Martineau, who snapped a surreptitious photo of John Hinckley at St. Elizabeths Hospital in southeast DC. Hinckley is the would-be assassin of President Ronald Reagan, who not only shot Reagan, but two law enforcement officers and Press Secretary Jim Brady in 1981. He has been living at the mental hospital since 1982 and preparations are being made for his release sometime in the near future.

For a front-page story in the paper that ran April 26, Martineau entered the St. Elizabeths grounds and found Hinckley feeding some cats, whereupon he took photos from his car. Security was alerted and the guards detained Martineau upon his exit. After some back and forth, in which Martineau refused to allow security to view his photos, DC police were called and they threatened to arrest him if he didn’t hand over his memory card. After consulting with his bosses at the Post, that’s what he did.

Alexander goes over the points of the case and debates the merits of the two arguments — on one hand, that Martineau was in violation of the hospital’s no cameras policy and, as the hospital alleges, violated Hinckley’s dignity, and on the other, that  journalists have been known to flout such restrictions if it means getting a story, especially for the public good. Further, Hinckley is a public figure to an extent, and he’s certainly at a public facility. (St. Elizabeths is run by the DC Department of Mental Health.)

This is a sticky situation, and dare I say that Martineau’s explanation that he didn’t see the two “No Cameras” signs on his way in seems suspect as he was shooting from his car — meaning he was prepared to make a quick getaway. However, calling the police over a photography violation and then confiscating the memory card is a gross overreaction and right in line with many of the photographers’ rights abuses we report on all the time. Any time a photographer’s equipment is seized it’s almost certainly illegal and an overstep of the law.

Alexander brought up a good point, and that is that the photo could have been taken outside the institution on one of Hinckley’s many trips to a local store or to visit his mother in Virginia. It may have taken more time to stake Hinckley out, but there is no gray area there.

So, was the photographer taking a shortcut? Was he being arrogant, thinking he’s above the established rules? Or was he thinking it’s a harmless photo of a well-known individual out in the open, if not for the gates surrounding him?

(Incidentally, there is no trace of the photo on the paper’s web site as far as I can find.)

Article from the Washington Post

Readers Tell WaPo to Kiss Off

Photo by Bill O’Leary/Washington Post

This is the photo that ran on the front page of the Washington Post last week that caused 27 readers to cancel their subscription. People wrote and called in to express their homophobia outrage and accused the paper of “promoting a faggot lifestyle” and said the photo “makes normal people want to throw up.” Ombusman Andrew Alexander doesn’t buy it. “News photos capture reality,” he wrote in his regular column.

There was a time, after court-ordered integration, when readers complained about front-page photos of blacks mixing with whites. Today, photo images of same-sex couples capture the same reality of societal change.

The funny thing about the anti-gay sentiment is that, if all these protesters would just acknowledge that it is biological – i.e., something you’re born as – then there isn’t any need to fear photos, TV shows or marriage laws will turn anyone else onto the lifestyle. It just already is.

Article via Washington Post

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