Is this the new wave of photojournalism?

This morning, I came across Michael Yon’s online magazine with his reporting from Iraq and Afghanistan. Spent a mesmerising hour reading his reports from the frontline and trying to analyse whether this fascinating combination of self-published, online words and pictures is the way photojournalism has to go in order to survive. His work is supported by reader donation.

Apart from the independent entrepreneurial approach, I think the most fascinating aspect of his work is that it puts a human face to these conflicts and tries to get beneath the surface of the shooting war with the kind of honesty that would be impossible for an embedded photojournalist working for a major publication.

Of his motivation, Yon says, “I was in the Army some years ago and maintained close contact with many friends who made a career of military service. Naturally, I had an interest in what was happening in Iraq–I had friends in harm’s way. But what spurred me to drop what I was doing, get on a plane and fly halfway around the world, to a war zone, was a growing sense that what I was seeing reported on television, as well as in newspapers and magazines, was inconsistent with the reality my friends were describing. I wanted to see the truth, first hand, for myself.”

Take a look. And if at all possible support modern independent photojournalism…



Filed under Autobiography, documentary photography, News, Photographer, Photography, Photojournalism

2 responses to “Is this the new wave of photojournalism?

  1. It is an interesting way. The embedding with the army has always worried me, because they obviously only let photographers shoot what they want to get out in the media, so it is a form of censorship and PR spin.

    But donations could also mean pressure from certain groups or individuals, so one has to be very strong there as well.

    Good on him though. His work is good.


  2. I think it depends on the army, Roel. I don’t know if you saw the comments on ABC’s Media Watch last night about reporting the activity of the Australian army compared with the frankness of the US military. It seems the Australian media is treated as the enemy by the military heirarchy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s