What on earth was Sarah Palin thinking when she posed in a pair of teeny-tiny gym shorts for a photograph that ended up on the cover of Newsweek — a cover she has called “sexist”? Perhaps she was thinking that her image would only appear in the magazine she was posing for, Runner’s World, and nowhere else, at least not for months and months. If so, she had good reason — since, as DailyFinance has learned, the photographer who shot the picture violated his contract by reselling them to Newsweek.
That photographer, Brian Adams, could not immediately be reached, and his agent, Kelly Price, declined to comment, saying, “I keep all of my clients’ business private.” But a spokeswoman for Runner’s World confirms that Adams’s contract contained a clause stipulating that his photos of Palin would be under embargo for a period of one year following publication — meaning until August 2010. “Runner’s World did not provide Newsweek with its cover image,” the spokeswoman said. “It was provided to Newsweek by the photographer’s stock agency, without Runner’s World‘s knowledge or permission.” The spokeswoman declined to say whether Runner’s World intends to respond to Adams’s breach of contract with legal action.
I guess Jill Greenberg had another assignment that week.
In addition to the sexism of the cover, as a couple of Blogospheric Photoshop parodies of the Newsweek cover highlight, one of the problems that the legacy media faces, as it continues to push liberal narrative journalism over anything even approaching objective reporting is that it’s entirely predictable. Republicans are inevitably the bad guys; Democrats are invariably smart and cool (and Newsweek really made itself look even sillier than usual last month trying to defend Joe Biden), and since the reader knows exactly what to expect, there’s no real reason to buy the magazine. Or as Andrew Ferguson wrote earlier this year:
While flipping the pages of the new Newsweek, it began to occur to everybody that, hey, this is a pretty stupid idea for a magazine. Are there really 1.5 million magazine readers–the number of subscribers Jon has promised advertisers–who want a liberal opinion magazine written by liberals who don’t want to admit they’re liberals? Last week everybody looked at one another and pondered a world without Newsweek.
This sort of approach is fine, and understandable, for political magazines such as the New Republic, National Review, and Ferguson’s own Weekly Standard, where the reader expects to find partisan worldviews that match his own, but when applied to what once thought of as news, commits a cardinal sin of journalism: