This article might raise a few eyebrows. I am just wondering: do we need the spectacularization of pain?
Film production company Duck Rabbit just published an article on their blog criticizing Magnum Photo and Lens Culture for advertising a photo contest using an image of an underage sex worker having sex with a client. She is recognizable, he is not. Sure the impact is strong, but do we really need that picture? Is it making a difference or is it just sensationalistic exploitation?
The controversial image is just one of very many other pictures that photojournalists may feel pressured to produce.
Most features on the market cover tragedies and photo-editors’ desks are flooded with gut-wrenching pictures. They are often dismayed by the lack of reportage on much other than disasters, Third World tragedies and exploitation of children. There are editors (and readers) who can’t stand seeing pictures of poor kids and other forms of suffering any longer. But… the market demands it and photojournalism is there partly to reveal the ugliness of our world.