April 9th, 2008

Enterprise Bridge

IPA and IHSA settle photo dispute

Last year, the Illinois High School Association adopted a policy awarding an exclusive license to a company for selling photos from state championship events. Part and parcel of that was refusing media credentials to newspapers who sell any of the photos taken by their photographers. The Illinois Press Association rightly called bullshit on it, and filed suit in Springfield to stop the policy. The state legislature got on board, passing a bill in the Senate that was bound to pass in the General Assembly. The IHSA saw the writing on the wall and agreed in court to restore the status quo ante.

The IHSA sticks to their idiotic position that the bill would have forced them to end their several state final telecasts. That's a crock, the market takes care of that. It's like cable TV competition in most places. The production costs are so high, that if you have to split the revenue stream, you can't afford to participate. And single telecast fulfills every interested community's needs. (If you don't like the announcers, you often have a local radio station covering it, so you do the same thing you do for Bears games--turn off the TV sound, turn up the radio.) Photography is a different story. A single event photographer has to cover both teams equally. Local papers can cover their own teams predominantly, or exclusively. They can better fulfill their community's need that way.