In view of the declining revenues of daily newspapers, we've been expecting a rash of new competitions aimed at prising free stock photos from readers. The weekly Daily Telegraph Big Picture competition has been grabbing rights for nearly a year now, but of course the Telegraph has been having its own private recession for longer than most. We failed to notice the flagging Times has since muscled in on the travel compo action that the rival Telegraph had to itself, with its own weekly Times Travel competition.
Travel is a perennially useful theme for newspapers' rights-grabbing competitions. For one thing, readers with jobs can afford to travel and don't try to reclaim the expenses, unlike pro photographers used to. And readers' generic images from around the world can be repurposed to fill holes for all sorts of international stories. This is tremendously cheaper than buying in a topical photo that is actually relevant, of course. And who would not want to donate their work to help out the impoverished News Corporation in these hard times? Generous CEO Rupert Murdoch's company only earned $32.996 billion last year.
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