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View Full Version : NFL Vest Advertising Poll and Question/Discussion



Orgnoi1
07-22-2007, 06:59 AM
OK... first and foremost... this easily can become a heated topic... so please for the sake of this thread... cooler heads should prevail... this is a semi-followup from a discussion (heated discussion) on DP Review...

Topic:
The NFL has dictated that all press photographers that will shoot the 2007 season must wear a red vest with the logos "Canon" and "Reebok" on the back.

The question:
Do you feel its a violation of ethical rights that the NFL is wearing a "safety red vest" and putting advertisement on it of sponsors?

Orgnoi1
07-22-2007, 07:11 AM
My thought is this...

I have always noticed that the sports I do (would) cover require the same type of idea for a long time before this NFL idea came about. The AMA supercross and motocross has always had sponsors on press vests (mainly the Thor sponsor)... NESRA required Trish and I to wear safety colored snocross bibs over our gear for safety also with a sponsor name on them.

I dont feel it really has any basis of complaint in a private professional league situation where the games are sponsored by specific brands. It shouldnt have any effect on what type or quality of images a photographer gets of the game... nor should it have any reason to look at it on an ethical issue really. If Nikon decided also to sponsor the NFL to the extent that Canon, Motorola, Reebok, or others have then the vests could easily have Nikon on them instead of Canon..

On the ethics issue a lot of people professing to be press photographers screamed that by being a Nikon shooter but being made to wear a vest with Canon on it it would be unethical and biased. What I am saying is that I feel that specific shooter is being biased to their own gear while trying to sugar coat it by saying that are morally higher... it should make no difference in what you are made to wear providing it has no effect on the images you are taking for the purpose of "news publication"...

No sports fan really is watching the game and saying "wow look at that Nikon user with the Canon vest... what a loser".... they are only worried about the game or the shots afterwards in print.

Teresa221
07-22-2007, 09:14 AM
Well, I should probably preface this by saying I don't watch football at all!

The NFL is a private organization, and they can do pretty much whatever they want - so if they want to collect money from advertisers for the vests that they make the photogs wear, it is their perogative.

I would say most viewers who watch don't know about and don't care about the rivalry between Canon and Nikon. So, they probably won't get it.

Sure sucks for the Nikon shooters though LOL! But realistically, how many Nikon shooters are there? Everytime I see pictures of the photogs at pro sporting events it's row's of Canon L-glass I see.

marshall
07-22-2007, 10:33 AM
Sports is entertainment, and entertainment has different rules.

Sports is covered by journalists, who must protect their integrity above all.

There is a contradiction in there somewhere.

I don't recall people complaining about the logo on the Olympics-mandated vest, which Roger Goodell has mentioned when he announced this policy. I can't remember who that sponsor was. Would the reaction be different if it weren't Canon? Would it be different if it weren't such a visible sport?

Canon has a huge lead in pro sports/PJ shooters, but it isn't 100%, so it will be interesting to see how some Nikon shooters deal with being required to put on the competing logo. It's been suggested that some will just wear it inside out, but the NFL is notoriously prickly about its rules and sponsors (just ask Jim McMahon).

zacker
07-22-2007, 10:35 AM
i just cant believe that the NFL feels they actually need the ad space..lol thats funny to me.. as for the vest, what ever, if you shoot for a living.. you wear what you need to and drop the attitude because for every shooter, theres another wholl take his / her place!

Orgnoi1
07-22-2007, 10:43 AM
I agree it will certainly be interesting... both Trish and I belong to NPPA which is the main opposing force against the NFL...

My real question is this... if it said Reebok and Nike on it... would anyone REALLY be complaining? Probably not...

I actually posed these same questions to my step father who is about an avid a NFL fan as it can get... his answer was that he really never noticed the photographers during the games... and that the NFL is notorious for making money off sponsors in all sorts of ways... he mentioned even the refs may have something of a new uniform this year...

I would consider myself a lightweight PJ... mainly because I dont do mainstream media type reporting... but really all serious railroad photographers are PJs in that we are reporting railroad occurances... and submitting for publications. I dont feel really that by having some names out there it really means much... heck if I could just get a comfortable vest I would wear it even if it said Olympus...LOL

JerseyMutt
07-22-2007, 11:05 AM
I am by no means even close to being a pro photog, let alone a PJ. None the less here are my thoughts on it. As much as I know I don't have to do this within the NEF community, let me make the following disclaimer, none the less. The opinions expressed below are my own. I force none of them upon anyone else, nor put anyone down should their opinions differ.

1. I do think that the NFL is grasping at straws with this one. Most fans and event personnel rarely pay attention to photogs on the sidelines so I don't see this form of advert being all that effective. However, it is well within the NFL's perogative to do so.

2. That being said, if a photog wants to shoot the event, I think this is a very small price to pay for the chance to capture photos that could really make your career. I don't really see a morale dilemma if, as a Canon shooter, I had to wear a vest with Nikkon on it. I know what I shoot and I like and wearing a vest with a "competing" brand is not going to change that or make me feel less "loyal" to my brand. Now, if someone finds they absolutely can't do it, then that's fine. It is their choice to do so and I will not insult them or think them "crazy" for sticking to their guns. There are plenty of photogs who would be chomping at the bit to take their place. Hell, I'd wear a vest advertising Kotex or Monestat if it'd give me even 10 minutes to take a few pictures from the sidelines.

stoneylonesome
07-23-2007, 09:03 AM
Be kind of embarassing if the media you work for shoots only with Nikons and you're out there advertising Canons. I really don't think it's right for the NFL to require that.

Orgnoi1
07-23-2007, 09:13 AM
Be kind of embarassing if the media you work for shoots only with Nikons and you're out there advertising Canons. I really don't think it's right for the NFL to require that.

Sandy...just a question on this...

If the vest said two non-camera brands on it would you feel it was ok then?...

zacker
07-23-2007, 09:17 AM
its funny that the NFL requires anything on the photogs vest, its not like they are on camera for more than a second or two... what Im waiting for is the NFL to require the teams to start having logos on THEIR uniforms!! Look like a bunch of Nascar drivers running around out there..lol

Orgnoi1
07-23-2007, 09:19 AM
its funny that the NFL requires anything on the photogs vest, its not like they are on camera for more than a second or two... what Im waiting for is the NFL to require the teams to start having logos on THEIR uniforms!! Look like a bunch of Nascar drivers running around out there..lol

I agree... but its definately a money hungry organization...

stoneylonesome
07-23-2007, 09:20 AM
Sandy...just a question on this...

If the vest said two non-camera brands on it would you feel it was ok then?...

Not really, I feel that the NFL is just trying to make money off of other venues then there on. Does the photographer or news media get any benifit from this? I have no problem with them wearing a safety color vest, or for that matter one with the home teams logo on it, but not a sponser. What if you were FORCED to wear a vest with a company or product that you had a personal hatered for or one say you had pending litigation against, on that went against you're believes. Just to many variables in this.

convergent
07-23-2007, 09:21 AM
I got into a big discussion about this over at dpreview and got a little carried away. I will first say that I have a great deal of respect for most of the press photographers that I've interacted with. I am often shooting along side them at games and I've seen them capture some good stuff... even with Nikon gear (just kidding around there). I've also been shocked at times by some of the things that have happened... like one of them that asked me how to operate the D2H that they had which was kind of interesting since I was shooting all Canon gear and I did know how to setup and operate the D2H that they had with them. Bottom line is they are photogs just like everyone else, and they have the added issues to deal with. Also, bottom line is they shoot for money, and I'm shooting for money. Their money goes from advertisers to the newspaper to the photographer. My money goes from the customer directly to the photographer.

The NFL is running an event and they can set whatever rules they want to. If a requirement for being given press credentials is that you have to wear a red safety vest that is sponsored by some companies, then so be it. Where I get real confused is trying to understand how wearing that vests is going to alter the way they take pictures? The closed thing I've had was covering a large international electronics show as media, I was given a press pass that was inside a holder and neck strap sponsored by Samsung. It never entered my mind that I would shoot differently at this event, or even change my view and coverage of Samsung because my neckstrap and Press Pass had a Samsung logo on it. I would think that I would have pretty weak ethics if that were how easily I was swayed. I also don't think that the public there thought that I was promoting Samsung (personally) by wearing the Press Pass. The fact that all the press was wearing them should be a clue to anyone visiting the event that Samsung paid to have their name on the things... big deal.

Without advertisers there would be no NFL games to cover, so I say to these guys... either suck it up and wear the vests, or don't cover it. I'm sure that the NFL could fill the stadiums with equally competent photographers to cover the games if the press photogs all decided to boycott it. I think that 40 years ago, the newspaper industry had enough power to maybe get away with a boycott and get their way. Today though, I think the NFL would tell them to pound sand... they've got TV coverage, internet coverage, etc... if the newspapers decide not to participate its their loss.

Orgnoi1
07-23-2007, 09:22 AM
Not really, I feel that the NFL is just trying to make money off of other venues then there on. Does the photographer or news media get any benifit from this? I have no problem with them wearing a safety color vest, or for that matter one with the home teams logo on it, but not a sponser. What if you were FORCED to wear a vest with a company or product that you had a personal hatered for or one say you had pending litigation against, on that went against you're believes. Just to many variables in this.

I agree on the hatred part... but this isnt a new situation... Lukatis may come on and back me on this... they are required to wear press vests at MX events that say Thor on them (a MX brand)...

I dont think they can get away with wearing a teams name as PJs are supposed to be unbiased which is the reason this whole issue came up in the first place...

zacker
07-23-2007, 09:22 AM
what will the fans have to wear?? lol it is all about ad space... every TV show, radio show, event.. get the people in so we can get them to see our sponsers products.. look at how much it costs to advertise in the Super Bowl!

Orgnoi1
07-23-2007, 09:24 AM
I got into a big discussion about this over at dpreview and got a little carried away.......

Yeah Mike is the whole reason I started this thread...LOL

convergent
07-23-2007, 09:25 AM
Be kind of embarassing if the media you work for shoots only with Nikons and you're out there advertising Canons. I really don't think it's right for the NFL to require that.

How is it any different than the Press Box at a baseball stadium being painted yellow and having a 50' Nikon banner on the wall? Advertising doesn't change what people use, and I don't think the public is going to think that all the photographers there are personally endorsing the brand when they can see the equipment they are using. For anyone that really knows, they can easily tell what brand they are using by what color their lenses are. In almost all cases, if the lens is black its nikon, and if its white its Canon... with a few exceptions where Nikon does make some white lenses and some Canon shooters may be using non-Canon long glass. By and large, its easy to tell what people are shooting with. I don't see how wearing the vest implies that the person personally promotes whats on the vest... since they are ALL wearing them.

StudioCMC
07-23-2007, 10:18 AM
It's the NFL event, they can dictate the rules, or simply don't take part in the shoot.

Besides, I think Target should sponsor them.. Little Bullseye's on the back.. that would be too funny.

Chris

Orgnoi1
07-23-2007, 10:29 AM
Besides, I think Target should sponsor them.. Little Bullseye's on the back.. that would be too funny.

Chris

ROFL...now THAT is funny...