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When the Press Determines Stardom: Who Gets Recognized?

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, nanushka said:

I think the purpose of using the tag @nytimes was quite likely to link his criticism directly to the paper. At least, that's the message that comes across pretty clearly to me.

your comment appeared before my edit.

i thought it maybe broke the camel's back.  I have no way of knowing. He could hate the times or someone there. Or you could be 100percent correct.  

Is she often or usually the only one identified or credited ,  particularly in media that does not specialize in dance?

 

Edited by Vs1

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, Vs1 said:

your comment appeared before my edit.

i thought it maybe broke the camel's back.  I have no way of knowing. He could hate the times or someone there. Or you could be 100percent correct.  

Is she often or usually the only one identified or credited ,  particularly in media that does not specialize in dance?

 

"it" = the caption and "the camel's back" = what?

(Frustration at Copeland getting recognition while other dancers don't? Wouldn't that still be a criticism of the NYT, since they're the ones doing it?)

Sorry, maybe I'm being obtuse. I'm still just not clear what broader question you're raising or what hypothesis you're suggesting (or even which of the two of those you're doing).

I don't know of other examples of Copeland getting sole photo or text credit in images or descriptions of performances that also involve other dancers equal in company status (assuming they're not in contexts where the coverage focus is primarily or exclusively on her — and in this case she's not even mentioned in the article, I believe). And this was in the Arts section of the NYT, I believe, so I wouldn't really say they're unversed in dance coverage.

Edited by nanushka

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Of course on all points 

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I would say this is a least a little critical of Misty, considering that her management is the one that has promoted her as the only female principal at ABT. She sought stardom, it's not like the media all of a sudden out of the blue picked this "unknown" soloist and made her a star. She is a self-promoter with her own marketing team (outside of ABT) and so it does reflect badly on her when articles like these appear.

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https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/15/arts/dance/firebird-ballet-stravinsky-ratmansky.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fdance&action=click&contentCollection=dance&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=2&pgtype=sectionfront

The NYTimes did it again in the above article about Firebird.  Misty is the only person specifically named as being in the photo even though former principal Gomes and current principal Abrera are in the foreground of the photo.

Y'all know that Misty's PR agent is also the PR agent of ABT, right?  Explains a lot.  Talk about an ethical conflict of interest!

Edited by abatt

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9 minutes ago, abatt said:

The NYTimes did it again in the above article about Firebird.

I have to say that one seems more excusable to me, at least somewhat. The other one was clearly an ensemble image, whereas here the Firebird herself is much more the focus of the image (in composition, color, etc. — not to mention being the title role). Still, it does certainly fit a broader pattern that seems to me to be problematic.

Edited to add:  That's not to say I disagree with the point abatt seems to be making — just that my first reaction to the more recent caption would not have been "Whaaa???" as it was to the earlier one.

Edited by nanushka

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19 minutes ago, nanushka said:

I have to say that one seems more excusable to me, at least somewhat. The other one was clearly an ensemble image, whereas here the Firebird herself is much more the focus of the image (in composition, color, etc. — not to mention being the title role). Still, it does certainly fit a broader pattern that seems to me to be problematic.

Edited to add:  That's not to say I disagree with the point abatt seems to be making — just that my first reaction to the more recent caption would not have been "Whaaa???" as it was to the earlier one.

I agree. This one doesn't bother me, for the reasons you say, and Abrera/Gomes are not up in the picture with her but hunched down and they blend in with the large ensemble. Also, the article is strictly about Firebird, so I get the emphasis on that character alone. The other picture's caption, that ignited this thread, was inexcusable.

I had forgotten that Copeland's PR agent is also the company's. That is just wrong.

Edited by ABT Fan

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Question:  When the NYTimes wants to use a photo, do they get it from ABT and get ABT's permission for use?  Is ABT providing the photos to NYTimes?  I'm not asking about the captioning of the photos.

Edited by abatt

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26 minutes ago, Helene said:

Has the NYT outsourced captioning and articles to Copeland's/ABT's PR agency?  

Helene, something you wrote earlier on this thread suggested to me that it might indeed be the case that some captions might originate elsewhere than in the heads of NYT staff (though, of course, not necessarily from ABT's and/or Copeland's PR team):

Quote

In some contracts, it is stipulated that individuals and/or dancers at a certain rank be acknowledged, and the company is responsible for creating captions and tying use of the photos to using the captions, but I'm not sure how much clout they have (de factor or de jure) in enforcing the standards.

I hadn't realized this was the case before you posted that. Is it common for there to be negotiations between a ballet company and a media outlet publishing images of that company regarding the content of captions?

Edited by nanushka

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In both photographs Copeland is being held aloft above the other dancers. 

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24 minutes ago, abatt said:

Question:  When the NYTimes wants to use a photo, do they get it from ABT and get ABT's permission for use?  Is ABT providing the photos to NYTimes?  I'm not asking about the captioning of the photos.

 

I don't know the Times current policy.  In general, they have tried to create as much editorial independence for themselves as possible, and I imagine that would include their photos.  In the case of tboth of these photos, the cutline under the image is pretty clear, with credit to  "Andrea Mohin/The New York Times"

 

Edited by sandik

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9 minutes ago, dirac said:

In both photographs Copeland is being held aloft above the other dancers. 

Indeed, a true statement. What do you make of that, dirac?

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As the part of the image that is the most prominent (and in the case of Firebird, she is the titular character), if they were going to name anyone, they would likely name her.  And, whether you care for her dancing or not, she is the most familiar name for a big part of the Times' readership.  If the choice were to give a specific name to a specific person, or to use the ubiquitous "artists of ABT," I would imagine the editor would prefer the more lively cutline.

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Are photographers from the NYTimes allowed to photograph only certain performances, or all performances? 

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2 hours ago, nanushka said:

Helene, something you wrote earlier on this thread suggested to me that it might indeed be the case that some captions might originate elsewhere than in the heads of NYT staff (though, of course, not necessarily from ABT's and/or Copeland's PR team):

Captions provided by Companies are for their own photo vaults they make accessible to the media.  Whether they outsource this to their PR agency I would think depends on the company.

I don't know if when the press takes its own photos, they are given guidelines on how they must caption*, but did they outsource captions for their own (NYT) photos to ABT's/Copeland's PR agency?  That would be a stretch, even if Copeland's/ABT's joint PR agency wrote ABT-sourced and -owned photos in their vault.

 

*For example, if it's in a dancer's contract that they must be listed in the captions if in the photo, this would be a guideline, although I don't know if it's enforceable if the photos don't belong to the Company.

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5 hours ago, Helene said:

I don't know if when the press takes its own photos, they are given guidelines on how they must caption*, but did they outsource captions for their own (NYT) photos to ABT's/Copeland's PR agency?  That would be a stretch, even if Copeland's/ABT's joint PR agency wrote ABT-sourced and -owned photos in their vault.

*For example, if it's in a dancer's contract that they must be listed in the captions if in the photo, this would be a guideline, although I don't know if it's enforceable if the photos don't belong to the Company.

Different publications have different house styles, but it's highly unlikely that the NYT would cede that task to a publicist.

 

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5 hours ago, Helene said:

...but did they outsource captions for their own (NYT) photos to ABT's/Copeland's PR agency?  That would be a stretch...

Thanks for the additional information and explanation, Helene. I agree it would be a stretch. Indeed, I didn't even happen to think before that captions might be within the purview of anyone but the newspaper itself.

Edited by nanushka

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Was at a workshop this evening about press, and was reminded of this old rule of thumb for publishers.  One or two people in the image -- identify them.  Three or more -- use your own judgement.

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6 hours ago, sandik said:

Was at a workshop this evening about press, and was reminded of this old rule of thumb for publishers.  One or two people in the image -- identify them.  Three or more -- use your own judgement.

Useful to know. Judgment is a thing that can be good, bad, or somewhere in between, of course, and is often justifiably subject to criticism.

Edited by nanushka

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In general, publications have standard practices -- it's not quite as ad hoc as I may have made it seem.

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