ST. PETERSBURG, FL – Judges for the National Press Photographers Association’s 2006 Best of Photojournalism Television contest decided to tackle a big category today: Documentary. There were just 14 entries, but the stories ranged in length from short as 4 minutes to as long as an hour. And finalists and winners were also announced today in the categories of General News and Deadline News.
After an initial viewing of the Documentary entries, the judges knocked the field down to seven stories that they wanted to continue considering. After another look, they narrowed it down to three. And then they watched the three documentaries again in their entirety.
For the second day, judges questioned the use of photographs in some entries. “How much did the photographer really shoot, and how much was scanned in?” Ray Meints asked. Lou Davis commented, “Toward the end of the story it was really a tie.”
After some discussion, the judges picked the finalists and winners in the Documentary category. First place went to John Goheen of HDNet for “Child Miners,” and second place is Chuck Cochran of WBAL-TV in Baltimore, MD, for “Survivors Among Us.”
After the Documentary category, the judges next considered General News. They quickly narrowed the field from 77 entries down to their favorite 10 stories. After watching those 10 again, their discussion began. Davis thought there were “a lot of pretty pictures, and the stories had a beginning, middle, and end, with good sequencing.” Meints said that he “gives extra weight to photo essays.” The judges found several feature stories that were entered as general news, and they were able to cut down their favorite 10 stories down to 5.
Then they picked the winners in the General News category. First place was awarded to Kristen Bergeron of KTVT-TV in Dallas, TX, for “We Gotta Clean Up.” Second place went to Jonathan Malat of KARE-TV in Minneapolis, MN, for “The Mail Must Get Through.” And Third place was Bergeron again for “C’mon Guys, Let’s Go.” Honorable mentions were awarded to Byron Reed of KUSA-TV in Denver, CO, for “Photo Op,” and to Mike D’Angelo of WGN-TV in Chicago, IL, for “Running of the Brides.”
The judges decided to skip a dinner break and to move ahead and judge theDeadline News category on Tuesday evening. The 50 entries in Deadline News were narrowed down to 7 stories. The judges said that they felt there could have been a lot more in this category, and that most of the stories entered were either General News stories or Features. “I think you should have it all, telling a story, great picture, great moments, that’s what deadline is to me,” judge Ernesto Torres said. Meints added, “In this category, I’m looking at how you handle it under pressure.” Judge Kevin Labrecque commented, “It’s just about guaranteed you’re going to get something if you go out with a rescue team.”
From their final selections, the judges picked winners in the Deadline News category. First place was awarded to David Bradford of WJW-TV in Cleveland, OH, for “Over The Edge.” Second place went to Gary Knox of KARE-TV in Minneapolis, MN, for “Life Saving Senator.” And Third place went to William Glynn of NBC News for “New Orlenas: City Under Water.” Honorable mentions were award to Scott Ripley of WFXT-TV in Boston, MA, for “A Successful Weekend,” and to Carl Stein of KCBS-TV in Los Angeles, CA, for “La Cochita Mudslide.”
Two additional judges arrived at The Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg today to begin organizing entries in the 2006 Best of Photojournalism Television Editing contest, and they will begin picking winners in editing categories on Wednesday. Judges Ron Kabele and Sandy Spencer will also be picking the Video Editor of the Year, and watching entries in the new editing category created for Web Content. Kabele is a photojournalist for Texas Parks and Wildlife, and Spencer is the chief editor for KPHO-TV in Phoenix, AZ. The editing portion of the Best of Photojournalism Television contest is coordinated again this year by Mike Harrity.
NPPA's Best Of Photojournalism contest is sponsored by Canon, Avid, The Poynter Institute for Media Studies, Hesketh.com, Ibiblio.org, Western Kentucky University, Camera Bits, Ohio University, and Merlin One.
Read an earlier story about the judges and their biographies here.
Read Sunday's judging results story here.
Read Monday's judging results story here.