It's no secret that the photography profession has fallen on hard times of late, especially for those who work as photojournalists in the dying newspaper industry. But is it really worse than mopping floors and washing dishes?
According to a recent poll conducted by job-search website CareerCast.com and published in the Wall Street Journal, the noble profession of photography was, yet again, dragged through the muck and placed near the bottom of its list of the "Best and Worst Jobs" of 2013, which ranked 200 professions in the U.S.
The title of "Photographer" was placed in the lowly spot of No. 172, right below "Construction Worker" and just above "Seamstress/Tailor." The title "Photojournalist" did even worse at No. 188, wedged between "Dishwasher" at 187 and "Corrections Officer" at 189.
The annual CareerCast poll uses data pulled from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics and other government agencies. Each profession is ranked using five criteria: physical demands, work environment, income, stress and hiring outlook -- all of which produced anemic results for professional shooters.
The results of these rankings, of course, are meant more for our amusement and tongue-in-cheek bragging rights than for sober analysis. For instance, "Military General" was busted down to the ranks of No. 180 on the list, well below the lofty positions of "Bus Driver" (at 157), "Garbage Collector" (160) and "Cashier" (169). Meanwhile "Janitor" was given a relatively high rank of 153, narrowly beating out "Electrical Technician" at 154 and "Corporate Executive (Senior)" at 155. Go figure!
As bad as it may look for photographers and photojournalists, they should be grateful they work in images rather than words. “Newspaper Reporter” was ranked dead last on the list of 200 jobs, below "Actor" (197), "Enlisted Military Personnel" (198) and "Lumberjack" (199).