Keep Photos in Washington
We the undersigned members of Reuters editorial urge Thomson Reuters to reconsider its decision to dismantle the photo desk in Washington in favor of a new operation in Toronto.
The photo news desk's proximity to the Washington World Desk, the Western Hemisphere television news desk and the North American TV Sports editing desk is crucial to a close working relationship. The desks alert one another to chase breaking news on a regular basis.
The seasoned Reuters photographers and editors in Washington are a small team whose members assign, monitor, chase, shoot and edit photos for a huge swathe of territory in one of the world's biggest media markets. With fewer U.S. personnel than its competitors, the nine-member team has learned to do everything more effectively: breaking news, Congress, the White House, political campaigns, sports, features, entertainment and a growing Reuters America Service file. How long will it take to build an equally versatile and experienced staff in Toronto?
Photos are an invaluable, lucrative core component of Reuters quality and the Reuters brand across the world. Diluting its strength in the most news-making U.S. city, Washington, is a move we fear will have negative repercussions for years to come.