Thursday, November 28, 2013
News photographers at the White House are steamed because the Obama administration is taking photos of events and serving the images to the news. Meanwhile, photojournalists are barred. Commentators are claiming that it is propaganda, but is it? It might be the wounded pride and exaggerated self-importance of the media. The potential for propaganda is there because in-house photographers will send out only pictures approved by the White House staff. On the other hand, most of the images are for record purposes only and are hardly revealing -- grip and grins, people in meetings, state dinners. If there is a real news event in any of these, it is bound to be small. Maybe it is just as well that the White House has cut down on the phalanx of photographers clicking shutters madly for no apparent reason. Yes, there might be propaganda, but it hardly matters since most people won't be paying attention to the pictures anyway. Meanwhile it has created a PR flap for administration's staffers. Something tells me they won't have much trouble controlling it.