IFPO membership

Discussion in 'Digital SLR' started by Siddhartha Jain, Jan 12, 2005.

  1. Hi,

    Me and my friends from the local photography club want to cover some
    events like festivals and marathons. Someone suggested that we get one
    of these international photographer's pass that will enable us to get
    into the press enclave at most places. So googling, I came across this:

    For $68 they offer a lifetime subscription to a magazine, a membership
    ID card and a video on related information.

    So, how much worth is it in terms of giving you access as a press


    Siddhartha Jain, Jan 12, 2005
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  2. Siddhartha Jain

    Walt Hanks Guest

    In general, press credentials for an event are issued by the public affairs
    office of the sponsor of the event. They must be applied for in advance and
    you generally need to verify that you represent a legitimate media outlet.

    There may be some events staffed by people who would be fooled by these fake
    passes, but probably not any worth shooting. If the magazine is really
    good, join. But don't do it for the passes.

    Just my opinion, of course.

    Walt Hanks, Jan 12, 2005
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  3. Siddhartha Jain

    Alan Browne- Guest

    It will definitely fool the uninformed. It will probably work for
    smaller local events where they're delighted to have photographers
    wandering around with serious looking equipment. Even then you are best
    to get permission/passes ahead of time regardless of a little card you

    It will not get you into a serious money venue (Rock concert, major
    sports, major political events, trade shows). Those require event
    passes. That's received following an application to the event
    organizers and a letter or form from the editor of a newspaper/magazine
    that the venue recognizes (and accepts).

    Alan Browne-, Jan 12, 2005
  4. Siddhartha Jain

    Bob Salomon Guest

    Worth a good laugh.

    Legitimate new press passes come from police organizations. In addition
    the legitimate press photographer will have ID from their news
    organization. Once one has these it is very easy to get passes from show

    In some cases a show sponsor may issue an individual a pass in exchange
    for images.

    You don't buy a press pass. They are issued to legitimate photographers.
    Bob Salomon, Jan 12, 2005
  5. My hunch is that its a scam. I guess the best thing to do is to call up
    a real local press photographer and ask whats the worth of this card.
    - Siddhartha
    Siddhartha Jain, Jan 12, 2005
  6. Siddhartha Jain

    Frank ess Guest

    With a couple weeks of labor and a little design work you could start
    your own organization of 'freelance photographers'. I'd bet these guys
    tried the photographer's career, and eventually settled on this scheme
    because they made no money otherwise.

    I've never seen the magazine, but the example on their site is from
    Spring *2003*. Another bet: they put up the site two years ago,
    collected a few bucks, and moved on. The site stays up because there is
    an occasional $107 bit of income, plenty to pay for storing the site,
    easy money.

    Plus which, my third bet: nobody, but *nobody* who *counts* will
    recognize credentials from IFPO, er, IPFO, er, rIPOFf...
    Frank ess, Jan 12, 2005
  7. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Guest

    Actually, those of us that are familiar with those initials (they've
    advertised in every photo magazine for years) will know that whoever is
    carrying that ID is a press photographer wannabe. :)
    Jeremy, Jan 12, 2005
  8. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Nixon Guest


    Press credentials for an event are issued by the organizers of the event.
    For example, if you want to shoot a sporting event, you would obtain
    credentials for that event, or more generally for all of a team's games
    at their home stadium for a season.

    More general press credentials for news reporters are issued by police
    departments; see for example:

    Press credentials that actually matter are issued by the people who are
    giving you access, not some random organization.
    Jeremy Nixon, Jan 12, 2005
  9. Siddhartha Jain

    Frank ess Guest

    Nice pounce, Jeremy.

    Actually, I don't often use too few words. How about:

    " ... recognize as valid ... " ?
    Frank ess, Jan 12, 2005
  10. Siddhartha Jain

    usenet Guest

    So does a nice-looking business card that says you're a photographer.
    Once I started selling images reasonably regularly, (I won't be giving
    up my day job any time soon though!), I designed a fairly slick business
    card for myself, & got a small box of them printed. I've since found
    that they're pretty good for breaking the ice with event organisers &
    security staff at many events.
    (Mind you, you'd be surprised at how easy it can be to talk your way
    into trade shows, if you're ballsy enough to give it your best shot. ;)
    usenet, Jan 13, 2005
  11. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Guest

    (I am another Jeremy than the original poster)

    It is not an attempt to stifle the press, as much as it is a security issue.
    Press photographers, because of the nature of their function, must be
    allowed closer access to celebrities, politicians, etc., than are the
    general public. Unfortunately, people with any kind of notoriety are often
    stalked, attacked, etc. All the police are interested in is in being
    certain that press people really are who they say they are, and are not
    nuts, terrorists, etc.
    Jeremy, Jan 13, 2005
  12. Siddhartha Jain

    usenet Guest

    <reads the requirements>

    Jesus. So much for 'freedom of the press'.
    usenet, Jan 13, 2005
  13. Siddhartha Jain

    mc Guest

    Exactly. Those credentials allow reporters to cross police/fire lines,
    etc., where ordinary citizens are not allowed at all.
    mc, Jan 13, 2005
  14. Siddhartha Jain

    RustY © Guest

    Make your own for nothing - It's just as good. You can use their name too
    if it helps.
    RustY ©, Jan 13, 2005
  15. Siddhartha Jain

    Lionel Guest

    [press pass restrictions]
    All the nuts or terrorists have to do is steal or fake up a pass.
    They're hardly going to be deterred by the threat of a $200 dollar fine,
    or losing a non-existant newspaper job.
    Lionel, Jan 13, 2005
  16. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Guest

    I wasn't suggesting that the system was airtight, but just wanted to debunk
    the OP's suggestion that this was a government ploy to try to control the
    Jeremy, Jan 13, 2005
  17. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Nixon Guest

    Actually, it is an attempt at just that. People with an NYPD press card
    are afforded almost unlimited access to places "regular people" would not
    be allowed to enter. They are allowed to cross police lines, ignore crowd
    controls, get close to celebrities and politicians, and generally go where
    they want and do what they want as long as they stay out of the way. You
    just can't let everyone do that, so the minimal requirements are to ensure
    that the people who get the permission are those who really need it, and
    not just so they can score some actor's autograph. Letting too many people
    do it would be very much like letting no one do it, and would serve to
    restrict freedom of the press rather than allow it.

    There is a similar level of requirement for press field access at sporting
    events, like NFL and Major League Baseball. As it turns out, there are a
    *huge* number of non-reporters who try to get press credentials just so
    they can get access and be cool. As usual, it's the jerks who ruin it
    for everyone else.
    Jeremy Nixon, Jan 13, 2005
  18. Siddhartha Jain

    Matt Ion Guest

    Despite the naysayers and the claims that it was a one-off scam that's
    long gone made in other posts here, IFPO has been around since about
    1984. Dunno if they still actually exist, although the last letter I
    got from them was less than a year ago (I've been a member since the
    late-80s, four-digit membership number).

    They publish a magazine, they print members photos and articles in said
    magazine... this, to my thinking, makes them and their press credentials
    as legitimate as any other press outlet. They'll even contact
    venues/events on your behalf (as your "publisher") for tough cases.

    I've not used their services much over the years (it was about $30 to
    join back them, lifetime membership), but I know a couple people who
    have used their IFPO/American Image Press/Today's Photographer Magazine
    credientials regularly and quite successfully.
    Matt Ion, Jan 14, 2005
  19. Siddhartha Jain

    ZONED! Guest

    Exactly, it only eases the minds of the ignorant into a state of false
    security. Much like the fact that if one buys a one way ticket on an
    airline they get a complete search of person and property as opposed
    to those who buy round trip (yes they occasionally pick out one or two
    for examples) but it seems to be based on the opinion that any
    terrorist would never waste a few bucks on a trip they do not intend
    on returning from. Seems a small price to pay to help disquise a
    ZONED!, Jan 14, 2005
  20. Siddhartha Jain

    Jeremy Nixon Guest

    Security from terrorists has nothing to do with the press card policy.
    Believe it or not, there are still a *few* things in this country that
    we haven't allowed the terrorists (in the White House, that is) to

    It's just a matter of not being able to let everyone do the things you
    can do when you have a press card, and making sure the people you let
    do those things are generally doing them for the right reason and won't
    be getting in the way.
    Jeremy Nixon, Jan 14, 2005
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