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Chicago Sun-Times trains reporters to shoot with iPhones after laying off all its photographers

By Amar Toor on June 1, 2013

The Chicago Sun-Times this week laid off all 28 of its staff photographers, and has reportedly begun training its remaining reporters on “iPhone photography basics.” Media journalist Robert Feder first reported the news in a post to his Facebook page Friday, citing an internal memo from Sun-Times managing editor Craig Newman.

“In the coming days and weeks, we’ll be working with all editorial employees to train and outfit you as much as possible to produce the content we need,” Newman wrote in the memo, which Feder published in full Saturday morning. Newman goes on to highlight key areas of focus, including iPhone photography, “video and basic editing,” and social media.

The paper cut its entire photography staff on Thursday, including Pulitzer Prize winner John H. White. In a statement, the Sun-Times said the move was part of a broader shift, as the company focuses more on video and digital multimedia. Going forward, the company will rely exclusively on freelance photographers — an approach that’s common in magazine publications, but rare among newspapers.

Chicago Sun-Times trains reporters to shoot with iPhones after laying off all its photographers