What part of “a free press” do police departments not understand?
You don’t know him, but you’ve seen his work: The rise of Creative Commons has leveled the playing field for bloggers, giving many the opportunity to use free-to-use images at times comparable to wire photos. But the quality varies, and it’s rare to find someone sharing high-quality pictures consistently — but Gage Skidmore pulls it off. The 18-year-old photographer, who shoots celebrities and conservative politicians largely as a hobby, has uploaded nearly 9,000 photos to Flickr since early 2008, and thanks to favorable licensing, finds his photos of famous and important people in use all over the Web — including such sites as CNN, Fox News and Mashable. What drives his work? Click on to see his take on the matter.
How he got started in photography
- Why he does it “I was inspired to take photos of various political figures and celebrities because of my own personal interest in seeing good, quality photos at the various events that I have had the pleasure of attending,” he said. His efforts have taken him to such political events as CPAC and the Values Voter Summit, as well as pop-culture events like San Diego’s Comic-Con.
- His politics Skidmore, who describes his politics as “pretty much in line with the constitutionally conservative principles that such people as Ron Paul and Rand Paul represent,” says that he got his start shooting politics in 2009, with his first subject being the Kentucky senator. Skidmore says he largely supports the Republican platform on domestic and social issues.
- His current work Since graduating high school, he took a year off before college to cover political events around the country, including such electoral hotbeds as Washington DC, Iowa and New Hampshire. (It is an election year, after all.) Skidmore was even recognized at the most recent CPAC by someone at the American Enterprise Institute who commonly uses his photos.
Why he gives away his work
- I always enjoy seeing my photos being used by people, which is the main reason why I freely license them. The more people use my photos, the better. Crediting me is just icing on the cake.
- Gage Skidmore • Discussing why his freely offers his work to others under a Creative Commons license. The license he uses, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic, allows for free use and adaptation of his work for all uses, including commercial. This does not preclude his getting paid for the work, however — in fact, he’s received compensation in the past from a number of publications, and Sen. Rand Paul himself paid to use one of Skidmore’s images in the senator’s 2011 book, “The Tea Party Goes to Washington.”
His favorite subject
“Ron Paul, by far”: While Skidmore, beyond taking photos, largely doesn’t interact with his photo subjects (which recently included — when he took photos at WonderCon in Anaheim, Calif. — the cast and crew of “Community”), if he had to choose a favorite person to shoot, it’d be Ron Paul. “He is just such a kind hearted person who’s only intention is to spread the message of freedom throughout the country, which is a tough task at any age, but to be 76 and be as energetic and enthusiastic as he is is remarkable,” he says. “Even I can hardly keep up with him.” It helps, he says, that Paul always carries a smile on his face. “That makes my job much, much easier.”
How you can do what he does
Photo pass: Not needed. While Skidmore travels to a number of venues to get his photos, his process of actually getting the shots he needs once he’s at the events doesn’t sound particularly difficult — he says that most of the events he goes to are free to enter. “My advice to people looking to get into political photography is to simply dress professionally, and get the best photography equipment you can afford,” he suggests. “Then practice, practice, practice.” Skidmore may be known for his photography, but that doesn’t mean it’s a career choice — surprisingly, he dislikes taking photos. “My only enjoyment in photography is seeing my photos afterwards being received positively,” he says, saying that he enjoys the wide audience they receive as well as the people he meets as the result of his work. Our take: If he ever chooses to go pro, he could totally do it — and possibly charge a few bucks along the way. (photos by Gage Skidmore) source
In the days following the rogue US soldier’s shooting spree in Kandahar, most of the media, us included, focused on the “backlash” and how it might further strain the relations with the US.
Many mainstream media outlets channelled a significant amount of energy into uncovering the slightest detail about the accused soldier – now identified as Staff Sergeant Robert Bales. We even know where his wife wanted to go for vacation, or what she said on her personal blog.
But the victims became a footnote, an anonymous footnote. Just the number 16. No one bothered to ask their ages, their hobbies, their aspirations. Worst of all, no one bothered to ask their names.
In honoring their memory, I write their names below, and the little we know about them: that nine of them were children, three were women.
- Mohamed Dawood son of Abdullah
- Khudaydad son of Mohamed Juma
- Nazar Mohamed
- Shatarina daughter of Sultan Mohamed
- Zahra daughter of Abdul Hamid
- Nazia daughter of Dost Mohamed
- Masooma daughter of Mohamed Wazir
- Farida daughter of Mohamed Wazir
- Palwasha daughter of Mohamed Wazir
- Nabia daughter of Mohamed Wazir
- Esmatullah daughter of Mohamed Wazir
- Faizullah son of Mohamed Wazir
- Essa Mohamed son of Mohamed Hussain
- Akhtar Mohamed son of Murrad Ali
- Haji Mohamed Naim son of Haji Sakhawat
- Mohamed Sediq son of Mohamed Naim
This post makes a good point. The priorities of the U.S. media are so out of whack in cases like these that these things don’t get reported. They become meaningless statistics, blips on a radar that don’t register. There’s a campaign to be had here. The next time Afghan civilians die at the hands of the U.S. military, the NY Times, WaPo and other mainstream media outlets should put as much work into finding out about the people who died as they do the suspect. This is a war full of “forgotten” deaths. The media should be doing more to prevent them from being forgotten.
Television news correspondent caught “sleeping” on air: An awkward moment was broadcast to all of Austin, Texas on Wednesday when FOX News correspondent Doug Luzader appeared to be sleeping when an anchor working for KTBC tossed to him.
According to the Digital Journal, a YouTube user later claimed Luzader direct-messaged them on Twitter to explain he was not asleep, but rather did not know the toss had occurred as his interruptable feedback earpiece (IFB) had gone dead.
Judge for yourself. [KTBC]
Dude needs sleep!
The newspaper La Bougie du Sapeur is well-known among French readers, despite having printed less than 10 issues over the past 22 years.
The newspaper, which printed its ninth issue today, publishes once every four years — on a leap day.
The paper prints 200,000 copies every four years for its subscribers. The cost of a subscription is 100 Euros for an entire century (or about 4 Euros an issue). [HuffPo]
Are you French? Mail us a copy of this.
|—||Sean Hannity • Freaking out over the just-uncovered revelation that Media Matters allegedly has an enemies list, and he’s on it. The Daily Caller’s massive multi-part expose on the liberal organization seems to have uncovered a ton of dirt, including an internal memo that included this line: “We must take Fox News head-on in a well funded, presidential-style campaign to discredit and embarrass the network, making it illegitimate in the eyes of news consumers.” It appears that The Daily Caller did their homework with this one. One major quibble however: Tucker Carlson, a current Fox News contributor, runs The Daily Caller, and wrote some of the stories. That is a huge conflict of interest. Should Tucker have taken himself off this story? (ht imwithkanye)|
|—||The Onion editor Joe Randazzo • In response to the Republican Congressman who mistook an Onion article for the real thing. source (via • follow)|
Genius idea. A great way for news organizations, who need to stay objective in this case, to get involved in the Great Blackout.
I hope this is a joke. The New York Times Public Editor wonders aloud if their journalists should be reporting the truth.
It’s the kind of quiet neighborhood where you know when someone is out of place. Sioux Falls police believe while families here were on a relaxing holiday vacation, their paper carrier was rummaging through their homes.
“Some stolen goods were found in pawn shops. They had been pawned already. That gave a particular name,” Sioux Falls Police Public Information Officer Sam Clemens said.
Say what you will about newspaper Web sites: They can’t break into your home (yet). (h/t Poynter)