Ch. 6 The Importance of Photography

Photographs can capture a moment in time in a way that no other medium of media ever could. Simply having a photograph of a special moment in time such as a wedding or anniversary can provide memories for a lifetime. The issue with photography in today’s communication world is the debate on whether or not photography will become unnecessary and obsolete compared to video or even live video feed. People are starting to use television and film more than photographs in different functions of communication such as entertainment and surveillance. So the question is whether or not photographs are relevant in today’s society. I believe that photographs can capture a moment in a way that words cannot describe and video cannot capture either. I believe that the fact that photographs can represent a deeper meaning than film or television just because of the fact that the photograph offers a single shot of a specific situation. Because photographs can “freeze time” they can offer a unique perspective to a memory or event that video feed cannot because video uses several “motion picture’s” to create television. According to John V. Pavlik and Shawn Mcintosh’s book titled ” converging media”, a new york times photojournalist captured a photo of a starving child in South Africa in 1993. The photo consisted of a child crawling on the ground for food while a vulture stood by waiting for her to die. This photo was so powerful that people who subscribed to Times magazine insisted on finding out if the child had lived or died after the photo. The photographer was so taken back by the photo with grief that he eventually committed suicide. Critics criticized him saying ” The man adjusting his lens to take just the right frame of her suffering might just as well be a predator, another vulture on the scene” (Pavlik, et. al, 166). The importance of the photo led to the death of the photographer and the concern of many people reading the magazine in a way that television or video feed could not. By capturing the moment in a photograph the photographer can freeze a moment in time in a way that video cannot.

Six Keys:

Product: Photographs, Television, Film

Technology: Cameras, video cameras

Industry: Times Magazine, News industry

Money: Subscription fee

Law and Government: is the photographer responsible when capturing controversial photos?

Audience: Times magazine readers, News readers


August Wright

Comm 100

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3 Responses to Ch. 6 The Importance of Photography

  1. Mitch Bailey says:

    Video or live feed video focuses an audience on the actual thought or event of the material. In a photograph, the audience can put together their own thoughts or opinions inspired by the picture. I do not see photographs being out-sourced in the near future.

    • I agree with both of the above comments. Photographs will not be removed from society because they are important. It is easy to associate a photograph with a text, and it is easier to look at a picture rather than watching a lengthy video.

  2. mcfowler2 says:

    I agree and do not see photographs being dissolved into videos. Photographs that can be added to printed material, including newspapers, magazines, and other print materials, add value and visualization to the text. I think a photograph that accompanies an on-line article allows me to associate a picture with the text without necessarily needing an extensive video to do so.

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