In a bizarre move for any organization, let alone a “traditional” journalism outfit, the Chicago Sun Times today laid off the entirety of its 28-person photography staff. This news includes word that the Sun Times is training its reporting staff to take pictures with iPhone (or smartphone?) cameras. The newspaper’s statement reads like a confession:
The Chicago Sun-Times continues to evolve with our digitally savvy customers, and as a result, we have had to restructure the way we manage multimedia, including photography, across the network.
While this news is clearly taken as bad by anyone who rages over photographic quality (they do have a point), the business realities in news seem to be outweighing the ability for them to pay for quality. I would expect more bold moves by large newspapers in the coming months.