You are on page 1of 37

MISSION

Phos is a non-profit and civil- society association acting in public interest and in line with
the international laws to which Malta is party. Phos is aspiring to acquire an NGO (Non-
Government organization) status in due time.

Phos concentrates its actions and initiatives on social purposes and is acting for the
advancement of culture, art and heritage.

The mission of Phos is to create opportunities for the general public to participate in
cultural events, promote unity and diversity through art and initiate cultural cooperation
with other cultural institutions and groups both locally and on international level.

AIMS

To organise events where professional and amateur artists can meet each other and share
their knowledge and experience.

To create public awareness of importance and the power of culture and show how it is
reflected in different political, social and international contexts.

To promote interaction and networking by co-operating with NGOs, independent
organizations and associations in the European Union.

To support and offer advise to cultural institutions and individual artists.

To contribute and participate in cultural events.

TARGET GROUPS

General public, artist, cultural organizations, corporations and the media.
VISION

Phos is fulfilling its objectives by supporting local artistic initiatives and acting as adviser
to local and international cultural organizations, creators and artists. Group members are
developing new skills by participation and engagement in organization of events and
programs. The ongoing research for new cultural opportunities and trends in art helps
Phos to engage in projects that combine artistic value with social issues. Phos advocates
the freedom of cultural and creative expression and acts to build a strong link between
business and the world of art. Phos welcomes co-operation with NGOs, Academia,
artists, media and any organization involved in the promotion of culture and the arts.
SUMMARY

2007 proved to be an exciting year for Phos. World Press Photo exhibition was the main
project and the group focused their efforts on preparation and promotion of the event. Yet
members of the group were also involved in a number of other activities.

Malicia Dabrowicz participated in preparation of photo-sessions alongside The Malta
Independent photographer Ben Borg Cardona (published in April 2007 in “First
Magazine” and in May 2007 in the “Manic Magazine”). She was also responsible for
running a column for the e-magazine “Image 12” and acted as the head photographer and
editor of the catalogue for the exhibition “Grazzi Malta” that featured the works of late
Norwegian painter – Olaug Vethal. The exhibition, organized by Christie X of Artitude
Gallery, opened at St. James Cavalier on March 2008.

Between university course and working with a local TV station and a production
company, Marco Attard designed the covers for Image 12 e-magazine and participated in
the filming of “Heroes and Villains – Napoleon” for BBC in February and March 2007.
Alongside Malicia Dabrowicz, he was an active participant of Valletta Creative Forum –
a series of meetings and seminars dedicated to the Maltese culture and art scene.

Outside of Phos, Martin Galea De Giovanni leads another NGO- Friends of the Earth
Malta. On that account he travels extensively throughout the year especially since he is
also an executive board member of Friends of the Earth Europe. He also participated in
the local activities organized by Friends of the Earth (Gaia Fest, Earth Garden,
demonstrations etc.). His photos were included in the exhibition entitled Filfla and
Toteninsel - which was inspired by the works of Arnold Bocklin. Some others were also
published in local newspapers and magazines.

Michael Quinton was dedicating the spare time to work on music: producing and
recording the debut album of his band Spooky Monkey and writing the musical score for
local theatre productions such as “Mercury Fur” and “Alarms and Excursions”. He was
also involved in the activities of The Big Bang (a local comic group).

Phos members also tried to support local art scene by attending various cultural activities:
concerts, plays, exhibitions, album releases and seminars.

In what can be regarded as a successful year for the group, one project had to be put on
hold. Phos planned to host the head of World Press Photo jury for the 2007 competition –
Dutch photographer Jerry Lampen for a lecture at the University of Malta. Due to Mr.
Lampen’s other work commitments, and in light of events that Phos had no control over
(Benazir Bhutto’s assasination in Pakistan lead to Jerry’s departure on special assignment
for Reuters) the event remains now unscheduled. Phos remains in contact with Jerry
Lampen and hopes to organize the lecture in the future.

FUTURE PLANS

2008 opens a new chapter for Phos as an organization. Please find the list of projects
scheduled for the upcoming months, as well as those that are currently being worked
upon:

- Applying for NGO status (application pending)
- Opening a bank account
- World Press Photo exhibition (scheduled for January 2009 at St. James Cavalier)

For this project Phos is now promoting the idea of hosting the exhibition on the
Maltese Islands again, currently the group is holding meetings with possible sponsors.

- Exhibition at St. James Cavalier – Phos is looking into possibility of bringing
Oliviero Toscani exhibition to Malta (Benetton Commercials). Alternatively, Phos
plans to look into possibility of bringing the Africa Works photography exhibition
(Benetton and Youssou N`Dor campaign for Senegal). This project is being
promoted and the first meetings with possible sponsors were scheduled..

- Phos and Friends of The Earth look into organizing a photography exhibition
together (no date is scheduled as yet)

- Phos members execute their own side projects: participation in filming of
“Agora”, (Marco Attard, April 2008), writing musical score for a play (Michael
Quinton, April 2008), film funding seminar (Malicia Dabrowicz, April 2008).

Phos plans to achieve by organizing at least one major event per year. If for any reason
beyond Phos control, the group did not meet their goals, the work on the event will be
postponed on to the next year and new events will not be planned until the scheduled
projects are either executed or cancelled. This policy has to be noted as Phos is a non-
profit group and the organization of events solely depends on the possibility of fund
raising by the group.
STATUTE

The Agreement was established in July 2006 upon forming of the group. The document is
approved by the founding members and cannot be edited, actualized or changed without
the approval of all members of Phos. General meeting must be called for if need for
a new documents arises. The Agreement constitutes all the organization and actions of
Phos members as a group alongside with The Mission Statement.

ORGANIZATION

Phos (meaning `Light`) is a social initiative dedicated to promotion and organization of
cultural events. Group’s logo was designed by Steve `Maku` Scicluna.

It is founded by the following members: Michael Quinton (secretary, board member),
Martin Galea de Giovanni (research, board member), Marco Attard (treasurer, board
member) and Malicia Dabrowicz (public relations, board member).

Although Malicia Dabrowicz can act as a group leader and representative; any decision
must be agreed upon with the rest of the founding members of Phos.

Phos reminds a voluntary group based only on dedication and free will of its members.

The group is fully independent and is not associated with any governmental or private
institution of any sort.

Phos address is: “Ivy”, 29 A, Luzju Street, Sliema, Malta and the group email address is:
phos_malta@yahoo.com .

This Agreement, Mission Statement or reference letters are public and a copy of it can be
obtained on request.

Each year Phos will issue a general report. It will be issued till the end of the month of
June each year. It is written and prepared by Malicia Dabrowicz with the help of the
respective board members when described.
FINANCIAL MATTERS

There are no fees for the participation in Phos. In case a membership fee is introduced, its
amount and frequency is to be agreed with the rest of the members of the group.

In case the bank account is established for the group, it will be taken care of by Marco
Attard and Michael Quinton. The same applies for the collection and fees if they are
introduced in the future.

Any financial operations (pay-in, withdrawal, payment, cancellation, transfer of funds
etc) will be coordinated by Marco Attard and Michael Quinton.

A financial report for the bank account will be included in the general report.

MEETINGS

Phos holds at least one general meeting every 3 month, the presence of all group
members is obligatory.

Regular meetings do not require the presence of all members.

Unless stated otherwise, the meeting place is St. James Centre for Creativity, Valletta

General meeting is called at the end of month of April each year before the General
Report is issued. The presence of all group members is obligatory.

ACTIONS

Phos organizes the events by ongoing research in the field of art, looking for sponsors,
networking and personal involvement in different cultural projects.

Phos members can hold meeting with possible sponsors, contact companies and do
research on their own initiative. The rest of the members need to be informed about the
outcome of the actions.
VISION

Phos is fulfilling its objectives by supporting local artistic initiatives and acting as adviser
to local and international cultural organizations, creators and artists. Group members are
developing new skills by participation and engagement in organization of events and
programs. The ongoing research for new cultural opportunities and trends in art helps
Phos to engage in projects that combine artistic value with social issues. Phos advocates
the freedom of cultural and creative expression and acts to build a strong link between
business and the world of art. Phos welcomes co-operation with NGOs, Academia,
artists, media and any organization involved in the promotion of culture and the arts.
WORLD PRESS PHOTO EXHIBITION

World Press Photo is an independent, non-profit organization with its office in
Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where World Press Photo was founded in 1955. The
organization is controlled both by an independent executive board and a supervisory
board. The Amsterdam office acts as the hub for a network of professional contacts
worldwide - it is this network that makes organizing the contest, exhibitions and other
activities on such a large scale possible. World Press Photo is known for organizing the
world’s largest and most prestigious annual press photography contest. Prizewinning
photographs are assembled into a traveling exhibition that is visited by over two million
people in some 90 countries worldwide. A yearbook presenting all prizewinning entries is
published annually in six languages.

The ceremony at which the World Press Photo of the Year and the category awards are
presented, is the highlight of the Awards Days held annually in April in Amsterdam.

The awards ceremony also marks the official opening of the first exhibition of the season.
Prizewinners in all categories are invited to Amsterdam to receive their awards in person,
and hundreds of photographers and associated professionals travel to the city. The awards
are handed over in the presence of government ministers, other dignitaries and leaders in
the profession.

Prize-winning photographers have the opportunity of presenting their portfolios publicly.
The presence of so many top photojournalists and other interested parties is also the
springboard for organizing discussions that tackle contemporary issues affecting the
profession. Every year World Press Photo invites a prominent speaker to give the Sem
Presser lecture on a subject of crucial relevance to the field.

World Press Photo is also deeply concerned with stimulating developments in
photojournalism and encouraging transfer of knowledge - organizing the annual Joop
Swart Masterclass as well as seminars, workshops and other educational projects all over
the world.

World Press Photo 2008 seen 80,536 images sent in by 5,019 photographers coming from
over 125 countries.

In 2007 for the fist time in its history World Press Photo was hosted at. St. James
Cavalier Centre for Creativity in Valletta.
PREPARATIONS

Preparations for World Press Photo exhibition in Malta began in May 2006 when initial
contacts with Mr. Bart Schoonus of World Press Photo Foundation were established. At
that stage a general introduction to the topic was undertaken and Phos members decided
to promote the idea of hosting a large photography exhibition in Malta. In July 2006 Phos
acquired its statute and its members began to search for a venue. At that time a new
contact with World Press Photo Foundation was established with Mr. Jeroen Visser, who
supervised the project for The Foundation. On August 16th 2006, Phos received
a positive reply from Mr. Chris Gatt, general manager of St. James Cavalier Centre for
Creativity in Valletta that The Centre was interested in hosting the World Press Photo
exhibition. It was also decided that the smaller version of World Press Photo exhibition
(frames) would be presented in Malta.

In November 2006 collaboration was started with The Dutch Embassy after His
Excellency Ambassador Jan Heidsma contacted Phos. Members of the Embassy played
a vital role in the preparation for the event, especially: Myrthe Kusse, Tessa van
Berckelaer and Dania Burlage.

In January 2007 full budget for the event was prepared.

A series of meetings with sponsors followed. In April 2007 Phos welcomed C&C
Express (representative of TNT in Malta) as a sponsor responsible for logistics and
transport of the exhibition. C&C Express handled the crates with photos (108 framed
images in two packages weighting over 360 kg) and the whole process was supervised by
commercial manager of C&C Express, Mr. Steve Carabott.

In May 2007 World Press Photo exhibition in Malta gained two other corporate sponsors:
The Strickland Foundation (represented by Mr. Frank Bonello and Mr. Ron Agius) and
Malta Tourism Authority (represented by Mr. Kevin Drake). Both sponsors offered
financial support for the event.

In July 2007 Dutch Embassy became the main sponsor for World Press Photo.

Phos members promoted the exhibition during Valletta Creative Forum and as a result
support for the event was shown by Malta Council for Culture and The Arts (letter of
reference signed by the chairman, Mr. Adrian Mamo) and Valletta City Council.

In Sepember Mrs. Manja Kamman- representative for World Press Photo Foundation
came to Malta to take part in the opening of the exhibition.
Please find attached exemplary reference letters issued for Phos during the preparations
for the event:
SETING UP

World Press Photo exhibition was divided in two parts for the display at St. James
Cavalier Centre for Creativity. Main part including the Photo of the Year was located at
the Upper Galleries, while sport and environment-related categories were placed in the
main hall known as Lower Galleries. The reception also took part in Lower Galleries.
Additionally two banners informing about the exhibition were hanged outside St. James.
The set up was supervised and authorized by the representative of World Press Photo
Foundation- Mrs. Manja Kamman.

World Press Photo set up at Lower Galleries – pictures illustrated an article in The Times
published on 22 September 2007.

In general it took 17 months to bring the exhibition to Malta. The project was discussed
at 50 meetings and required a huge amount of correspondence: over 500 letters and 1000
emails were sent. Persons participating in the project have spent average of 4 hours a day
on preparations.
SPONSORS

World Press Photo Exhibition is collaborating worldwide with two corporate sponsors:
Canon and TNT. On a local level the event was sponsored by the following:

The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

The Embassy was the main sponsor of the event.

Financial Support Transport and Logistics Financial Support and
promotion

St. James Cavalier Centre for Creativity in Valletta hosted the exhibition.

Malta Council for Culture and the Arts, Valletta City Council and University of Malta
supported the project.
FINANCIAL RAPORT

Subsidies Description Granted

The Embassy of the Netherlands Main sponsor 8000 EUR
Malta Tourism Authority Corporate Sponsor 4000 EUR
The Strickland Foundation Corporate Sponsor 1500 EUR
C&C Express (TNT Malta) Logistics Transport, cars
St. James Cavalier Centre for Creativity Partner Venue

Fees & Rentals Description Cost

Rental of World Package includes: Exhibition (framed
Press Photo version), air transport from Holland 12 500 EUR
exhibition and from Malta, insurance. (sponsoring)
Rental for St. Venue for the exhibition, Upper and Covered by
James Lower Galleries St. James
Apartment for World Press Photo Covered by
Accommodation representative St. James
Covered by
Reception Food and drinks for the opening the Embassy
Door to door delivery, ground level Covered by
Local transport lifting, cars TNT
Covered by
Advertising Printing of posters and invitations the Embassy
Covered by
St. James –
Guest books Sending of guest books from Spain 85 EUR
700 EUR
Internet, office costs, mobile phones, (covered by
Operational costs printing, travel costs, promotional costs Phos)
PROMOTION

The promotion of World Press Photo exhibition was executed in three ways: though the
contacts with printed media, online mentions and by sending press releases and
promotional information. As a result of contacts with different newspapers and
magazines over 10 articles were published prominently in The Times of Malta, The
Sunday Times, Sunday Circle, The Malta Independent and Media Today. The first article
was published on 10 of February 2007; the last one was published on October 6, 2007.
The Exhibition also received an honourable mention on the cover of an in-house
publication for APS Bank (The Teller, Issue 5). Beside articles in print, Phos promoted
the exhibition over the Internet. As a result the information about the exposition was
featured on the websites of Di-ve.com, MaltaMedia, MaltaRightNow, Malta Today on
Sunday, Illum and Malta Star. World Press Photo was also included in Malta Tourism
Authority news bulletin and mentioned on the official website of Notte Bianca and on the
website of St. James Cavalier. Information of the event advertised on Malta Events
(online directory of events) and Scaremongering.net (art forum). Online mentions (as pdf
files) and printed articles (scans) were passed to corporate sponsors of the exhibition.
They are available upon request.

Exhibition was also featured in “Skrin” – a programme for E22 (Maltese educational
channel) in October 2007. For that occasion, World Press Photo representative and
supervisor of the exhibition in Malta – Mrs. Manja Kamman was interviewed. A copy of
the program wasn’t obtained by Phos.

Press releases were issued three times to promote the exhibition: in February 2007 (for
the winners of World Press Photo), in July and August 2007 (to promote the exhibition in
Malta), in October 2007 (for Notte Bianca) and February 2008 (for the winners of World
Press Photo 2008).

Over 500 leaflets and 200 posters (A4 format) were distributed around Valletta,
Birkirkara, Sliema, Msida, Three Cities and at the university of Malta for the promotion
of the event. Materials were placed at tourist offices (Valletta, Sliema, Vittoriosa, KSU
office at the University), art galleries and centres (St. James Cavalier in Valletta, Artitude
gallery in Sliema), local councils (Valletta, Birkirkara), restaurants (The Kitchen at the
Sliema promenade, Café Jubilee in Valletta), shops (Vee Gee Bee art supplies in
Valletta). Two banners were placed outside City Gate in Valletta and at the entrance to
the St. James Cavalier for the event. Over 300 invitations were sent.
REFERENCE

Please find attached below exemplary articles about World Press Photo exhibition in
Malta printed in the local newspapers.

An article published in Sunday Circle, October 6 2007 (written by Sarah Puntan – Galea),
includes information about the exhibition, Notte Bianca and a short interview with Frank
Attard (Maltese winner of World Press Photo award).
Article for The Malta Independent (written by Kevin Casha, former president of Malta
Institute of Professional Photography) was published on 29 September 2007.
Members of Phos and representatives of Embassy of The Netherlands (Mrs. Myrthe
Kusse and Mrs. Tessa van Breckelaer) interviewed by Teodor Reljic for Malta Today.
Article was published on 29 September 2007.
RECEPTION

World Press Photo Exhibition was officially opened on Thursday, 13 September 2007 at
St. James Cavalier Centre for Creativity in Valletta under the patronage of His
Excellency The Ambassador of the Netherlands Jan Heidsma and Mrs. Marjolin
Heidsma. The official part consisted of speeches by The Ambassador himself, General
Manager of St. James Cavalier - Mr. Chris Gatt and representative of World Press Photo -
Mrs. Manja Kamman. A small reception followed for the invited guests. Over 100
persons attended the opening night. Among those invited were The High Commissioners
of the United Kingdom and Australia, the Ambassadors of Ireland, Austria, Spain,
Portugal, Germany, Italy, France, Belgium, Greece, Slovakia, Sovereign Military Order,
Palestine, Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, United States,
Russian Federation, People’s Republic of China and representatives of the Cultural
Centers of Libya and Italy, members of Malta Photographic Society and Malta Institute
of Professional Photography, representatives from The Strickland Foundation, Malta
Tourism Authority, Valletta City Council and journalists of The Times of Malta and
Malta Today. A special guest of the evening was Frank Attard - press photographer and
winner of World Press Photo award.
TURNOUT

World Press Photo Exhibition has attracted over 10,000 people, both tourists and locals
during its display between September 13 and October 7, 2007. More than 6000 guests
visited the exhibition during regular hours at St. James Cavalier, whilst an additional
4000 visitors turned out during Notte Bianca, which was also the final night of the
exhibition. With a rate of approx. 230 visitors a day, it is one of the most successful
exhibitions to be hosted by St. James Cavalier in its history.

Many tourist visiting the Island during September and October period decided to see the
exhibition as part of their visit to Valletta. In general people from 34 countries have
attended. The list of destinations is attached below:

Australia
Austria
Belgium
Canada
Canary Islands
Czech Republic
China
Cyprus
France
Finland
Germany
Hungary
Greece
Iceland
Italy
Japan
Latvia
Luxemburg
Malta
Northern Ireland
Poland
Portugal
Romania
Russian Federation
Serbia
Slovenia
South Korea
Spain
Sweden
Switzerland
Thailand
The Netherlands
United Kingdom
United States
NOTTE BIANCA

Organized by Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Notte Bianca is an annual all night
celebration of arts and culture on the streets of Valletta. Each year various cultural
activities take place around the capital of Malta, most of them free of charge. World Press
Photo exhibition formed a part of the extravaganza on October 6 2007. It is worth
pointing out that due to the success of the exposition; it was prolonged to be included in
the event. Some 4 000 people visited the display during the night, and the Exhibition was
mentioned in the official programme of the Notte Bianca, as well as in the various guides
printed for the occasion (“Events Malta”, October 2007) and also included in the Ministry
report (“Malta Alive” report issued in February 2008).

Photos were taken by Martin Galea De Giovanni and Malicia Dabrowicz
GUESTBOOK

There were two guest books available to the visitors during World Press Photo exhibition
in Malta. Over 460 entries were left by the general public: 417 entries in the book placed
in the Upper Gallery of St. James Cavalier Centre for Creativity in Valletta (where the
main part of the exposition was located), 42 entries in the second book placed in the
Lower Galleries.

Among those who signed the books were members of local communities, students
(University of Malta, MCAST), representatives of political parties (Alternativa
Demokratika), members of photographic societies (Malt Photographic Society, Malta
Institute of Professional Photography), local artists and tourists (comments from 34
countries in 15 languages).

Alongside comments and reviews of the exhibition, guest books contain links to personal
websites, drawings, email addresses, appeals for peace, song lyrics, quotes, religious and
political statements. Among those only four can be classified as negative comments.

TESTIMONY

“Hope alone is not enough. Thank you for revealing the darkness we hide from and thank
you for showing that some people can still face it.”

“This extremely impressive collection brings to light a very small portion of evils of this
world created by our leaders and ourselves. It’s a brave remainder of how much work is
left to be accomplished and how the media has the capability of educating the `Western
World` of this so called life occurring at our doorstep”.

“Would be a good idea to show these pictures to politicians if possible without them
closing their eyes. (It is) stunning, horrible, too real”.

“My desire to be a photojournalist in the Middle East is no longer one that will be made
lightly”.
‘Once again I’ve realized in what privileged circumstances we live in Western Europe:
no starvation, no war, liberty of press, human rights…Lets all try to help make the world
a better place. Thank you for the impressive exhibition”.

“Thank you for giving us the opportunity to stop. Stop from our mad rush and reflect
about the cruelty and beauty happening around us and within us”.
“(The exhibition is) a truly unique experience. We would like to thank you for hosting
this event in Malta”.

“A very big thank you for making this exhibition available to the Maltese public. It is
really inspiring to be able to see such a standard of photography”.

“Shocking, vulgar, real. I have so much yet to see”.

“Seeing things from a different perspective really hurts my human side”.

“Amazing exhibition. Hope to see more events like this in Malta”.

“Impressive! An exhibition is not to be missed because it helps us see the cruelty that’s
taking place and how vain we can be!”

“Keep the events (like this) coming and we will keep on coming”.

“Excellent!! Exhibition that I hope to see it every year”.

“Seen it in Amsterdam. Seen it in Malta. An Event I look forward to every year”.

SCANS

Attached below are four exemplary pages from both guest books that were available to
the public during the exposition. Phos tried to keep the outlook of the pages as close to
the original as possible, that includes preserving entries made in pencil, drawings and
style of the respective comments. We also decided to keep the original writing and
spelling of the quoted entries. Words in brackets were added where it was impossible to
read the original comment. Entries in the guest books do not only reflect their authors`
opinions and feelings toward the event itself but they show the importance of projects as
World Press Photo to spread the awareness about human rights and various social and
political issues. Phos believes that the exhibition creates a strong link between culture and
the tourism. The entries in the guestbook were written in 15 different languages,
respectively: English, Italian, Thai, Japanese, Spanish, Korean, French, Maltese, Greek,
German, Hungarian, Chinese, Russian, Polish and Dutch. After the exhibition, the guest
books were handed to the General Manager of St. James Cavalier - Mr. Chris Gatt.
SURVEY SUMMARY

The members of public who visited World Press Photo Exhibition were invited to
participate in a short survey. They were asked a number of questions related to the
displayed works, role of the media and the ethical dimension of working in conflict
zones. From all the submitted entries, Phos then chose a representative group of 15
surveys. Selection was based on the following criteria:

1. Survey was submitted during World Press Photo exhibition (September 13th –
October 8th) either in a printed or electronic form. The latter were received by
email.
2. All questions were answered
3. Given answers were corresponding to the question and represented individual
opinion of the survey taker
4. All the surveys were taken anonymously, only 3 persons decided to sign the form

The survey was prepared to create the opportunity for the visitors of the exhibition to
express their opinions and concerns about photography and the role of media.

After reading all the entries and answers to all questions, the following conclusions were
drawn:

For Question 1 (“Do you believe that photographic record of wars, conflicts and the
suffering can contribute in the solving of such problems in any way?”) 90% of
responders believed that photographic record could contribute in the solving of problems
such as wars or social injustice. Participants pointed out that the photographic record of
conflicts exists because of the general public’s right to have access to the information.
Exhibitions such as World Press Photo could influence people’s opinions and make them
aware and alerted. It was also stressed that those in power (i.e. politicians) should see the
photographic record as they can act to make a real change. According to the survey
takers, the public should expect their representatives to undertake appropriate measures to
bring about this task: economic sanctions are justified against countries/regimes that
violate human rights, and more control should be exercised where weapons are
concerned.
For Question 2 (“Is it morally justified for the photographer to merely observe and take
pictures in situations where human lives are endangered?”) 70% of participants agreed
that photographers can take photos even in situations where lives are at risk. Mainly, it
was pointed out, because it is the photographer’s job to inform society and their help on
the scene would be minimal, while their photographs could help millions in the long run.
Survey takers also drew attention to the fact that it is always up to the photographer’s
conscience and code of ethics to decide how to act. Yet, precautions should be taken not
to overexpose human suffering in the coverage. 30% of respondents disagreed and
claimed that if a photographer is engaged in a situation where lives are at stake (including
his own) he should act responsibly and help. They also expressed their opinion that war
images that show human suffering were justified as long as they did not bring profit. In
the end it was mentioned that the press coverage can encourage terrorists to continue
killings as long as they gain recognition.

For Question 3 (“Do you find images exhibited at World Press Photo disturbing or too
graphic to be easily accessible by the general public?”) 60% of participants regarded that
the exhibited photos as suitable for general public, stating that the images were taken
with respect to human dignity, and they represented real situations. It was stressed that
the exhibited works had a powerful impact and brought topics of great importance to the
attention of the viewers. 40% of responders found the images disturbing or too graphic to
be easily accessible, especially for younger audiences. In the same time, survey takers
claimed that they have been adjusted to seeing violence on
a daily basis. One person suggested that the images should be of obligatory viewing for
politicians. Another person didn’t voice an opinion on the matter.

For Question 4 (“Is the media abusing of its position of following world events using the
images and stories for the sole purpose of making a profit?”) half of the participants
agreed to the statement and regarded the media be somehow abusive of its position.
Although the media hasn’t been described as corrupt, it was pointed out that profit gain
was its main concern. At the same time, the media was praised for its role as news-
bringer; others believed that the profits were used to send journalists and photographers
to various assignments. According to the survey takers, the media is also being abused.
Organizations such as Al Qaeda use the media to their own advancement to spread their
propaganda. The other half of respondents disagreed, claiming that media representatives
have the right to earn profits for being a social conscience, working in extreme
conditions, often risking their own personal safety. In a commercial world, even
photographers and war correspondents are justified to earn a living. Only one person
didn’t have opinion on this matter.

The survey was prepared as guidelines for further discussion on the related topics and
Phos hopes to return to the subject on the occasion of debate with Jerry Lampen – the
head of World Press Photo competition for year 2007 – a project Phos hopes to organize
in the future.