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2004 Year in Pictures
December 29, 2004 5:38 AM   Subscribe

The NYTimes 2004 Year in Pictures.
posted by bluedaniel (23 comments total)

 
Where is all the good news? Or wasn't there any? Photo content is overwhelmingly about death, destruction, and negativity. What a depressing display.
posted by yoga at 6:35 AM on December 29, 2004


Look at the New York and Sports sections. There are some more upbeat pictures there.

(My favorite was the underwater shot of the water polo teams. : ))
posted by SisterHavana at 6:43 AM on December 29, 2004


I would think they would wait until next week to do their year in pictures. After all, the Indian Ocean situation seems to be a big newsmaker and has been getting bigger every day.
posted by crazy finger at 7:07 AM on December 29, 2004


nyc is such a photogenic place.

somebody should accumalate all of the best of 2004 pictures from all of the media outlets (time, ap, reuters, etc) and put them on one site with a voting mechanism, like they have on hot or not. that way the collective we can really come up with the best of the best list
posted by hpsell at 7:27 AM on December 29, 2004


hpsell: here's a start:

Best of the (Washington) Post 2004
posted by heydanno at 7:34 AM on December 29, 2004


I don't understand all the news sites' fascination with Flash. The usability is horrible and the resolution is fixed. There's nothing they do there that couldn't be done better with HTML/CSS - they're only showing pictures! We don't need flashy transitions and sound effects.
posted by aerify at 7:52 AM on December 29, 2004


Here's MSNBC's best of 2004.

hpsell, these come from all the major photo agencies and include a vote component at the end, but you can only vote on the Reader's Choice.

Also, I worked on this (the MSNBC one), so I'm ridiculously biased, vain, and entirely unsuited to discuss, etc., etc., etc.
posted by jimray at 7:52 AM on December 29, 2004


Okay, for those of your with high-res monitors who don't like squinting at little boxes -

NYTimes
MSNBC
Washington Post
posted by aerify at 8:08 AM on December 29, 2004


I don't understand all the news sites' fascination with Flash.

It's harder to "steal" the pictures and put them up on a non-advertising-innundated website.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:15 AM on December 29, 2004


Ah. That makes sense.
posted by aerify at 8:22 AM on December 29, 2004


>I don't understand all the news sites' fascination with Flash.

>>It's harder to "steal" the pictures and put them up on a non-advertising-innundated website.


Man, if only it were that simple.

(disclaimer: I'm a Flash dev, I work at MSNBC, I'm the guy you all hate. And because MSNBC is a fingerling of the mighty borg, I realize I have zero credibility, yada, yada, yada. Also, I'm a die-hard Mac user.)

The reality is a bit more complex. In our newsroom, there's a giant separation between the advertising folks and the media folks. The ad folks essentially tell us "we need this ad at this size and it needs to run for X amount of time" - that's it. Never, not one time, has an ad person come and said "gee, wouldn't it be great if we could build this project in Flash so that users couldn't steal the photos?" Ad people don't determine the content of our projects and they don't determine how we build them - end of story.

We (meaning myself and the team of really smart folks I work with) use Flash because it's what we know. We've explored all kinds of other options, from Windows Media (ugh) to straight up HTML with some fancy backend to just hand building everything. Ultimately, we use Flash because it fits into our workflow, it's relatively easy to teach other people how to use some of the basics, and it's damn near ubiqutious in the user space. If we had to build these projects in HTML, with the kinds of multimedia requirements we've got, I can almost guarantee that they'd be Win/IE only. Not to mention, Flash allows us to do interesting stuff we couldn't reasonably accomplish otherwise.

If you think the sound and the transitions and whatnot are superfluous, I can't really argue with that, it's an aesthetic thing. I think that stuff is kind of important and like to believe we're evolving the medium. Sure, it'd be great if we could build an HTML-only version of our slideshows, but we just don't have the resources.

Finally, at least as far as I know, there's never been any discussion on using Flash to make the pictures "harder to steal" - I've seen entire photo galleries full of MSNBC photos that were captured with a screen grab. When that happens, it's an issue for our lawyers, not the media team.

What were we talking about again?
posted by jimray at 8:47 AM on December 29, 2004


thanks for the insight jimray, interesting.
posted by menace303 at 9:03 AM on December 29, 2004


What jimray said. A thousand times over.
posted by bluedaniel at 9:25 AM on December 29, 2004


Interesting, jimray.

My main problem with Flash on news sites is that they are all designed toward the lowest screen res possible. I guess most people surf at 1024x768, but for those of us at 1600x1200 and higher it's painful. That's why I always look for a direct flash link so that it expands to the size of my browser window.
posted by aerify at 9:37 AM on December 29, 2004


So why must the news media on the Web have multimedia requirements? I'm still wondering why people and companies can't put up stuff that's usable in any browser such as Lynx. (Hell, my girlfriend refuses to deal online, or sometimes even at all, with companies with "annoying" websites.)
posted by davy at 9:44 AM on December 29, 2004


I noticed they used the cropped version of the picture of the prisoner at Abu Ghraib, the one with the prisoner dressed in a Ku Klux Klan like hood, his arms prostrate and tied to electrical cord.

I agreed with Susan Sontag that the uncropped version was much more powerful. The one that showed an American soldier off to the side smoking a cigarrette.
posted by xammerboy at 9:46 AM on December 29, 2004


So why must the news media on the Web have multimedia requirements? I'm still wondering why people and companies can't put up stuff that's usable in any browser such as Lynx.

It's a photo spread. I'm pretty sure Lynx users aren't part of their target audience.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:51 AM on December 29, 2004


Thanks for the insight, jimray. Interesting how these things work out.

I don't really have the opportunity too look at the pictures much right now but I thought it was funny that in the second picture of the campaign 2004 section, there's a guy giving Bush the horns.
posted by DyRE at 9:53 AM on December 29, 2004


My main problem with Flash on news sites is that they are all designed toward the lowest screen res possible. I guess most people surf at 1024x768

That's not the lowest possible. I could go down to 640x480 without much trouble; below that I'd need to readjust all my font and icon sizes. But 1024x768 works for me; any higher than that and I'd have to make all my fonts and icons bigger to avoid eyestrain.

but for those of us at 1600x1200 and higher it's painful.

You mean "for people who can afford that kind of hardware". Most Americans can't afford to walk into say Circuit City and buy a new computer now, let alone upgrade in a year or 18 months to accomodate whatever nifty new features software and web designers have come out with in the meantime. And that's only Americans; how about Nigerians, Chileans, or Filipinos?

I cobbled this thing together a couple years ago on the cheap, with a case, power supply, and then-obsolete motherboard from a "barebones" vendor, and various other things from eBay and such; now I'm seeing complaints like using a CPU like mine (1.8Ghz) is "painfully slow".
posted by davy at 10:03 AM on December 29, 2004


It's a photo spread. I'm pretty sure Lynx users aren't part of their target audience.

When I see statements like that I often conclude that the person not only has never used Lynx but has never even clicked on the link to their site. (I like the "show images as links" option.) And it's not only Lynx anymore: there are now more "feature-rich" text-mode browsers like Links and Elinks .

Maybe their target audience is rich Americans with off-the-shelf mindsets.

It's easy, by the way, to read even the New York Times online in text-mode browsers without discomfort. It takes maybe 10 minutes of learning, i.e. reading a Help file or two if the Options (while in Lynx hit the "o" key) screen confuses one. Metafilter is possible but this box I'm typing in now doesn't render very well.
posted by davy at 10:21 AM on December 29, 2004


Pretty, yet somber pictures. Sort of like the picture NYT paints every day. In happier news, there was some good news this year. I'm sure of it. Somewhere.
posted by TwelveTwo at 10:54 AM on December 29, 2004


Am I the only one annoyed that NYC gets more photo coverage than National? wtf? They even admit that not much happened in NYC in 2004.
posted by FlamingBore at 12:17 PM on December 29, 2004


Not only did I click over to the almost entirely devoid of useful information for non-lynx users webpage that you provided, I have, in fact, used lynx in the past. But it would never have been my choice for browsing non-text material, and it wouldn't be now, either.
posted by jacquilynne at 12:24 PM on December 29, 2004


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