By Jon Wiederhorn
The National Press Photographers Association (NPAA) along with 19 other organizations, including National Public Radio, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Daily News, and the Las Vegas Review-Journal, are taking aim at Beyoncé’s policy of forbidding the press to shoot her in concert during her Mrs. Carter Show World Tour.
Instead, publications are being offered pre-approved live shots from previous performances. The NPAA requested that papers, websites, and magazines reject these handout photos because of the chilling effect they could have on the way photographers are allowed to cover stars in the future.
The hubbub started after Beyoncé objected to "unflattering shots" that were taken of her 2013 Super Bowl halftime show performance. When the photos were published on Buzzfeed.com, a representative for the diva asked the website to remove the shots. Buzzfeed refused, and the photos went viral.
In a letter to Beyoncé’s handlers, the NPAA general council Mickey Osterreicher stated that removing the ban on concert photographers would be beneficial to Beyoncé’s public image and would promote the publication of better pictures of the singer. He supported his claim by pointing to a recent concert in Manchester, England, for which the Manchester Evening News intentionally tracked down "unflattering" photos of the singer out of spite.
"Your ban has resulted in the posting of intentionally created prank photos…that have been far more unflattering than the original ones and which have gone viral," Osterreicher wrote. "Ending the ban is more likely to result in publication of fair, objective and mutually beneficial photographs that serve your interests and ours."
GQ recently revealed that Beyoncé has a temperature-controlled room in her office that contains every professional photo that was ever taken of her, beginning with the first shows of Destiny’s Child all the way up to the most recent shots for the biggest newspapers and magazines. Talk about photo-sensitive!