Do National Geographic contributing photographers need to get paid for their work? Of course they do.
But do they need National Geographic magazine to share their work with you? Of course they don’t.
They all have websites of their own. And now they have a communal showcase for their images. Introducing The Photo Society:
You might argue that much of the work showcased at The Photo Society is possible only because National Geographic paid for it — and you’d be right. But that pool of money is disappearing as Society membership continues to fall. Yes, some revenue can still be generated via corporate “partnerships,” but, as we’ve repeatedly suggested, that’s a losing game.
Which is one reason why The Photo Society… Emphas.is … Kickstarter … IndieGogo … Burn … and others are saying: The work itself ultimately matters more than The (Magazine) Brand, especially when The Brand itself engages in so much self-abuse.
BTW: We love the “Society” touch (for obvious reasons) and look forward to how this community will take shape in the year to come. We just hope The Photo Society won’t rely on the old model — we’re the Photo Gods on Olympus, while the rest of you are and forever will be anonymous supplicants with disposable income. That idea still animates NGM (the Our Shot / Your Shot silliness), but it certainly won’t sustain it.
Best of luck to Randy, Michael, Matt, Paul, Mike, Bill, Melissa, Tyrone, Gerd, Jim, Brian, Amy, Steve, Vince, Ed, Joel, Ami, Tim, Richard, and George. We hope TPS is a huge success.