Photo Policies

The Photo Editor gives all photo assignments to staff/freelance photographers, enforces all photo deadlines according to the editorial calendar, and is the only one responsible for final photo editing (i.e. cropping, contrast, etc.). The Photo Editor will give all possible information about the story or event to the photographer and discuss the assignment with them.


Editorial Procedures:

  • The Editor-in-Chief and Copy Editor will review cut lines for final photos prior to publication.
  • The Editor-in-Chief has final authority over whether a photo does or does not run.
  • Photo Editor must keep a file of all photos submitted and used in order to be archived after publication.
  • After processing photos, the Photo Editor must save the web version of the photo. Web photos will be clarified and cropped, but processing is not needed.
  • It is the responsibility of the Photo Editor to submit cut lines and photo credits to the web editor for postings.
  • Proper communication between Photo Editor and Section Editors, photographers and writers must be maintained.
  • The SM does not stage or pose news photos. HOWEVER, THE YEARBOOK MUST STAGE PHOTOS.
  • Pictures must always tell the truth. We do not alter or manipulate the content of a news photograph in any way, nor do anything to misrepresent the facts.
  • Minor adjustments to photos are acceptable. These include cropping, dodging and burning, conversion into grayscale, and normal toning and color adjustments that should be limited to those minimally necessary for clear and accurate reproduction and that restore the authentic nature of the photograph. The faces or identities of individuals must not be obscured by any sort of editing tool.
  • Coherence between articles and their photographs is a must. Photographers must provide complete cutlines, sometimes called capitions, with photos.
  • Photo illustrations must be clearly labeled as such and should not mislead a reader into believing a situation or event actually happened when it did not.


Photo Cutlines: • must identify the people in the photo. The only exception is photos with a large group of people, but these are to be avoided in most situations.

  • must include the time, location, name of event, and other relevant information to put the image in context.
  • must explain what the people are doing/what is happening in the photo.
  • must coordinate with the story so that the picture, cutline and story complement each other.
  • must use correct grammar, tense, and spelling of proper nouns.