Bottom line, bad idea. By putting good photographers out of work in the name of saving money from cutting things like benefits and a steady revenue stream, S.I. is hurting the same industry that made them a publishing icon. When photographers have to start worrying about where there next pay check is coming from, their images will ultimately suffer.
Materially, there are a lot of costs behind the production of the stunning sports photographs we’ve all ogled at. Expensive lenses, lighting, digital workflow equipment, etc. doesn’t just pay for itself and putting that cost onto freelancers that maybe will get work this week is a catch 22.
For a while,the editorial industry was at rock bottom and situations like this made more sense. Over the last decade, because of the advances of how our photos and video can be displayed cross-platform it’s hard to believe that cutting staffers is a smart decision.
S.I., like all the other printed and digital media out there, should be thinking of how they can hire more staffers, or some alternative solution, instead of heading in this direction.