Not all press photographers are u2018paparazziu2019, photojournalists will stress to their broadcast colleagues at a union meeting in Newcastle this weekend.

Photojournalist Jess Hurd is concerned that recent media coverage has portrayed all photographers as ‘paparazzi’

The move follows media coverage of the furore that surrounded recent publication, outside the UK, of pictures of a topless Kate Middleton that are alleged to have breached French privacy laws.


The London Photographers’ Branch (LPB) of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) will complain that their colleagues in radio and TV tend to brand all press photographers ‘paparazzi’ and – in response – has issued a 10-point list called ‘In Defence of Photography‘.

The document, to be given out at a gathering of the NUJ’s print and broadcast journalists, points out that a paparazzo is a ‘freelance photographer who doggedly pursues celebrities to take candid pictures for sale to magazines and newspapers’.

It adds: ‘Most photographers do not chase celebrities.’

Though LPB chair Jess Hurd said the document was not drawn up in ‘direct response’ to the Kate Middleton story, she told Amateur Photographer (AP): ‘We felt that [the Kate Middleton coverage] did reach fever pitch and that pertinent facts needed to be raised as part of the discourse.’

Hurd (pictured above) added: ‘Obviously, we need to have a discussion with our broadcast colleagues who repeatedly refer to press photographers as ‘paparazzi’…

‘The document will be distributed to our union colleagues and discussed at the NUJ Delegate Meeting in Newcastle this weekend.’

The photography body points out that while press freedom is a ‘central tenet of a true democracy’ – and photography in a public place should be defended – the media is ‘subject to the same criminal law as everyone else and should be held accountable’.

The LPB blames a ‘dumbing down of the media’ on magazine and newspaper editors and people who read ‘celebrity gossip’.

The NUJ meeting takes place at the Civic Centre in Newcastle upon Tyne from 5-7 October.

• Further coverage of this subject will appear in AP in due course

[Picture credit: C Cheesman]


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  • Biilionery

    Love these pics of my sweet babies!!! Love how you can see how brown Hud’s eyes are and how blue Kate’s are:) Precious. Thanks Amber. As usual no words to say how amnziag your pictures are. Can’t wait to see the rest!!!

  • paul Rich

    however… A local paper staff tog may be able to pick and choose what they do.
    But show me one picture editor who would not sack you on the spot if you ignored a major celebrity that happened to be caught out in front of you in what would be the big world news story, ” oh I did not photograph them because I am not a pap, P45 and holiday pay on its way.
    This stigma of distinction helps nobody, if the pictures appear in the press, they are press pictures. Paparazzi are a branch of press photography that supply a specific market of the press, just as sports photographers supply sports pages and local snappers pictures of big cheques and angry residents.