Photographer Teru Kuwayama has been hired by Facebook to work as “lead photographer” and liaison between the social media site and the photo community, “advising both sides,” he says. He will also be working closely with Instagram, which is owned by Facebook.
“For me, the most important aspect of my role is that I’m the internal advocate for photographers,” he told PDN. “I’m here to make sure that the interests of photographers are represented in everything from feature development on the technical side to the terms of service on the legal side. So, my job is to make Facebook work for photographers, and to help photographers make the best use of the Facebook.”
The social media platform has been criticized by photo trade groups for its terms of service, which allow companies to re-use users’ content without permission or compensation.
Kuwayama, a PDN‘s 30 photographer in 2000, is the co-founder of Lightstalkers.org, the online forum for photojournalists. In 2010 he launched Basetrack, a project that used social media sites, including Facebook, to share information about a battalion of Marines deployed to Afghanistan with whom Kuwayama and other photographers were embedded. Basetrack was funded with a Knight Foundation News Challenge grant.
Kuwayama told PDN, “I’m inventing the position as we speak.”
Experiment in Multimedia: Q&A with Teru Kuwayama on Basetrack (for PDN subscribers)