Just finished with the NPPA Board meeting, which was held in conjunction with the Multimedia Immersion Workshop and the Convergence Workshop. So much to say, but I will try to narrow it down to a few comments.
– First, check out this great story that Billy found and shot during the immersion. I am so lucky that I get to share my life with this guy and be inspired by him.
– I moderated a panel during the Multimedia Immersion Workshop on ethics and law in multimedia. Some interesting issues discussed included not just the legality of using music in multimedia presentations but also the general effects on the piece- does it detract? does it add? does it give the piece a mood that it didn’t really have? One of the most interesting points mentioned was how a popular music piece might be added to evoke a certain emotion, but it could actually have a different effect because the same piece of music means different things to different people.
– The NPPA Board budgeted to continue funding travel for the advocacy committee which will enable us to continue our work meeting with capitol hill staff and working with Congress when appropriate. Major issues that we are working on for the year ahead include Federal Shield Law, Orphan Works, Conflicts with High School Sports Associations as well as Pro sports associations, and proposed changes to the permit requirements for photographers at national parks. And of course, continued individual needs.
– As my term as “immediate past president” expired on Friday, I am no longer on the NPPA board. I was a little sad, as it has meant so much to me, but I am thrilled at the new leaders emerging and I am excited about the future for them. I am amazed at all that I have been able to accomplish and all that I have learned about myself. It is really true that when volunteering, you get what you give. Congrats to new President Bob Carey, Vice President Sean Elliot, Secretary Denise McGill, and EC Board Rep Tom Costello. Tony Overman becomes Immediate Past President and Jim Sulley remains as the treasurer. It has been a few years since there was such a large change on the EC- but these are good folks who will do wonderful things.
– Would you believe that during the Canon Shoot-Out, one of the NPPA Board members was harassed by Louisville police for taking pictures on a public street! A tourist destination (4th Street) no less. Of course you would believe it. It has happened to all of us. But it was kind of cool to be able to respond so quickly and in person. NPPA Attorney Mickey Osterreicher spoke to the local PIO and the manager of 4th street and both came to their senses. There was some talk of a mass photo party on 4th street but since the police backed down, it lost steam. For a while, Tony Overman was jokingly planning a WTO type protest and I was to be “the wailer.” Mickey is an amazing gift to the NPPA.
– Mickey Osterreicher also led a workshop session on photography and the law, which was well attended. It is clear that photographers are thinking more and more about legal issues. Hot topics discussed included trespass, especially in malls and private homes, privacy issues, confrontations with police and how to handle it and copyright. Some attendees asked if the NPPA was considering increasing its presence on capitol hill to include professional lobbyists, etc. NPPA doesn’t have the budget to do that this year, but we are accomplishing quite a bit. We are participating in several national legislative issues and continue to reach out in various ways and be as much a part of issues as we can. Considering how our advocacy efforts are growing at such an exponential rate, I wouldn’t be surprised if we achieve that dream several years down the road. It just requires support of the industry.
– We were invited to a reception at the law offices of Paul Paletti, Jr., a very cool lawyer here in Louisville who has transformed his office into a photo gallery with work from some of the most amazing photographers, both contemporary, like James Nachtwey and legendary, like Edward Weston and Alfred Stieglitz. A very cool gallery and a perfect vision of what I would like to do with a future practice.
As you can see, it has been quite a week. I will try to break down some of these topics and address them in future posts.