Monday, February 9, 2009

Young Poets stale newsprint.

I did a job yesterday photographing young poets that were part of a mentoring program. Many of them were published in a small press book. Some even had books of their own. It was an excellent event; there was some fabulous poetry.
It made me think about the blog on note for February 6th, and the publishing industry as a whole. How blogs have given writers, photographers and artists a place to publish their work for others to see. In the past, this has not been an easy hurdle to overcome.
Now artist don’t have to grovel with anyone, the web accepts anyone no matter you’re your level of expertise.
For better or worse, the Internet has become the new place for the talented and not so talented, no editors and little in the way of critics; you can delete any comment you don’t like and you have instant worldwide distribution. I’ve spent my life selling photographs to the print world. I’ve put up with my share of rejection letters as well as published pieces.
Now the print world is gasping for ways to tap the revenue stream of the web because print now has real competition. They haven’t looked at changing themselves to a broader appeal; they look to adapting what they do to a completely different medium.
Yes, I am a victim and you can hear it in this post. A project of mine has been turned down because it’s too regional. The same publisher now is trimming staff due to the economic downturn and declining coffee table book sales. Am I crazy to think that a picture book that has local interest can make money on a local level?
Newspapers tout they double check facts. The New York Times and Judith Miller come to mind, an experienced writer and one of the cornerstones of newsprint. Not fact but published unchecked fact. More reliable that the web, that’s what they want you to believe. I’ve been told the truth comes in many shades and colors.
The world is changing and they’ll have to change with it. I surf through blogs and find a whole host of interesting information, photographs and art. There’s many blogs that mention God and talk about faith. I come across every hobby imaginable, and quite a few blogs about family or starting a family. Some are written by the very young and some are grandparents and great-grandparents. There’s a lot of freedom on the web. Maybe the print world should do some surfing on their own.

No comments: