How Derby Can Do Better For Photogs
Last week I released this video on The Apex talking about the new WFTDA photographer policy. It's exciting to see the video at 6k+ views with discussions going on around the topic of the treatment of photographers, but I'm noticing some folks aren't sure what to do now that they want to make some change.
If you want to improve our community's relationship with our amazing volunteer photographers, here are a few ways we can work on it!
Advocate for Them
If you are in a WFTDA league, please contact your WFTDA rep about advocating for change to their current policy. If you're unfamiliar with the policy, you can read it here and learn why it is a disservice to our community's photographers in my video above!
If your league hosts a tournament, or have contacts with tournament heads of events you'll be at, have a thorough discussion about the event's policy!
And advocate for them in every day life! It's important we all take a real look at how we treat our league's volunteers, speak up if our friends are casually shit-talking volunteers, and review our league's policies to make sure we're treating our volunteers right.
Support Their Work
Not only should* we be supporting our photogs by purchasing our favorite pieces from them, but we should also make sure our leagues are, at least, financially helping team photogs with travel costs!
*No one needs to spend money to show their support and advocate for photogs! If you still want to do more, normalize supporting the work of these artists! For example, talk to friends about purchasing prints of derby photos they make their profile picture!
Embrace Them Into Your Derby Circle
Photogs, and volunteers as a whole, continue to be ignored by the skating members of the league. It may feel easy to forget about people you're not at practice with for 5+/hrs a week, constantly communicating about committee work, or traveling with several times a year. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't even try. I'm not asking you to be BFF's with the NSO or photographer you've never met, but make a genuine effort to include them into your movie night or after-party shenanigans! These are real, dedicated people in our community doing amazing work for the sport we love, let's treat them like it!
If you have more ideas, find me on Facebook! Let's talk about roller derby!
Make sure to watch this my video from 2015 for even more ways to appreciate our photographers!