Picture awards are scrapped

The long-running Picture Editors’ Awards have been scrapped.

In a statement, the awards organisers said: ‘Unfortunately, it has not been possible this year to assemble the necessary financial and organisational support for the awards to continue, and consequently, no competition will be held in 2008.

‘It is unlikely that the awards will be held in 2009, due to a current lack of interest.’

The ceremony has been under pressure since 2005 when Nikon, the camera manufacturer favoured by many journalists, withdrew its sponsorship.

Cash

Last year, a financial shortfall meant that the traditional £25,000 prize money had to be scrapped.

‘The awards have been running for 15 years and all awards have a finite life,’said Glyn Genin, the organiser.

‘They spanned a time when all news was done on film and when sponsorship was relatively easy to obtain, as there were three big photographic manufacturers – Kodak, Ilford and Fujifilm – which all wanted to sell film to newspapers, and therefore had a relationship with newspaper picture editors,’he added.

The shift to digital photography has ended that relationship, while the scrapping of many newspaper picture desks and the budgets they represented has also discouraged manufacturers from sponsoring the industry, said Genin, a former Financial Times picture editor.

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