Saturday, January 25, 2014

Sri Lankan Photographers : What the hell are they doing?

When was the last time you went to a party/event and had a great time without having to pose with your friends for 10 different photographers?? When was the last time you went to a concert and was able to enjoy the show without your view being blocked by around 25 photographers??

Its obvious that Sri Lanka has gone through a "DSLR" boom and all the rich kids who used to own a decent digital camera now run around with a big ass camera of which they dont event know how to use 90% of the controls. And then there is the photography craze. Any event you go, there's at least 5 photographers from 5 different "online media" taking your pictures and publishing them god knows where. Seriously, WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO PRIVACY?

Any event you go to now a days, you have photographers. Photographers trying to beat the other photographer in getting that special shot that would get people to come to "their" facebook page and click "like" on it. This new thing called "online media" which most of us Sri Lankans have got it wrong has changed the Sri Lanka events industry. Gather a bunch of photographers, start up a facebook page and you call yourself "online media". JOKERS! If only these jokers knew what media actually was. 

In the beginning, it was fun. I have to agree on that. Having your pictures online with your friends. Those were memories that were created. And now? its a NUISANCE!! Like Ive mentioned before, now you get a whole bunch of photographers taking pictures. You wont event know them and they wont even know you but your picture will be there on their facebook page. Its such a nuisance that you never know who is taking your picture, what kind of a picture are they taking (dirty picture, embarrassing picture, etc) and where they are going to publish it. 

And then there is the famous "essay" these photographers write on their pictures. "The photographer reserves the rights for this picture.. blah blah blah blah blah. You cannot publish this anywhere else blah blah blah blah". Who the hell gave you the rights for the picture? You may have taken the damn picture using your camera but who asked you to take it? Did you take the permission of the people in the picture to take their picture and publish it? Ive personally experienced where the event organizers themselves have been in difficulty on controlling the photographers and with the publishing rights. Some of these photography based "online media" are such that they go on to say that the organizers themselves dont have the rights to publish their pictures anywhere else. WHAT THE HELL? I do the hard work, I invite you and you get the publicity? 

And then there's the aspect of girls. There's this certain photography based "online media" who say they cover events via photography. And when you invite them, a huge number of them invade your event. And then if you see the pictures taken, the following will be the ratio 95% pictures will be of girls and women at the event. 4% of group pictures. 1% of the event. PATHETIC! Sad to say, ive noticed that many of these "online media" are doing the same. 

So now you must be wondering, so this guy hates photography and so he's blaming photographers. Hell no. I myself take pictures. Not on a damn DSLR. I take on my phone. And I admire the pictures taken by photographers who have real "talent". I respect the photographers who think photography is a form of an art and not a tool to prey on girls at parties and events. Photography is supposed to be enjoyed by people. Shared with friends and the world. Not to be locked and kept on one room.

Obviously there are laws that come into effect there. Laws regarding photography in public spaces and events and there's the privacy laws too. You are not legally required to get permission to take a picture in a public place, but its ethical to do so. Who knows what trouble a certain guy in the background of a picture at taken at Galle Face may face after your picture is published in some form. There are legal and moral regulations when it comes to photography. But then who cares. We live in Sri Lanka. Who obeys legal and moral obligations here?

If you are a photographer and read this, I sincerely hope you fall into the category of the "talented" photographers. Else do think about what I've said here. You make feel its against what you do, but then There's always two sides of a coin. What you think is right may not be right for another. Or if you have anything else to say, comment below. 

Just thought of writing down my thoughts. If you agree or disagree is not a problem to me.


Thursday, January 23, 2014

And so starts 2014

Hello and welcome to my blog. Its been several  months since I posted something although I gotta say ive got several drafts on my blog which are half baked and some which I dont ever intend to publish.

So its been an eventful 2013.

Many news friends came into my life.. Some went out.. did certain things that I would never regret in my life.. learned a lot of important lessons and to top it off, ended with V Awards 2013.

Ive almost completed by higher education but thanks to some jerks and also part of my inability to study and understand maths fast enough, I was unfortunate not to graduate last year. So gotta wait another one more year.

Met some great guys in my life. Started working for ReadMe ( and did a cameo appearance at a certain software company.

As always, volunteering was a big part of my life over the year. Was part of the Twinning Schools Programme Grand Finale in Badulla.. Months of preparations (which i was not directly part of most of the time) and then a week of fun, experience, friend, volunteering for a good cause. And then in the end we just became one big family. And the fun we had since then. No comments.

And then came the big hurdle. The FINALS. got through them with gods grace I would say. no surprises there.

Come August. Hello V Awards 2013. The biggest volunteer appreciation show in the country was back for the 2nd edition. The late nights, the long discussions, the treats, the fun, another set of friends made and merged into my life, the intense debates, the running around madly, the secrecy and then finally the show on the 6th of December 2013. I can without a doubt say that I am immensely proud that I was part of a team that put it all together. Another project done and dusted.

No big surprises in terms of births or deaths (thank god). Only regret that I couldnt be there with my friends at the graduation even though I wasnt graduating.

One thing I realized during the year was that its nice to have friends who care about you genuinely no matter what. Im not gonna say which incident(s) this refers to but, its always nice to check up on a friend who may be in a bit of a trouble...

2014 is here.. Its 23 days since the new year dawned.. a year that I assume is going to be very important in my life. I have no idea what god has planed for me. But what ever that may be, I just hope I can pull through it all and talk about it in a similar post next year.

Lesson learned in 2013 : working with like minded people will always be easy. working with like minded people who are friends, will be easier..