عنوان مقاله [English]
The progress of photographic technology, in addition to facilitate the registration of events, provides the possibility of fast and vast sharing of images and increases the interaction about them. This condition can lead to major social movements, public awareness and tremendous development; as we were witnessed social opposition with Trump immigration policies or informing and attracting public opinion toward dimensions of the massive oil leakage in the Gulf of Mexico. By arriving the golden age of photography between the years 1930 to 1950, new subjects such as ethics, privacy and honesty of the photographer were raised in the photographic world and the photographers' population showed their adherence to these concepts based on various regulations.
But with the arrival of amateur photographers who, - thanks to the digital age and the expansion of technology, got the chance of attending in this field –adherence and ethics were challenged. This challenge can be investigated from two directions, ignorant and non-dominance of these amateur photographers with management of the image content, and different readings that audience may have from an image. Hence, recognizing and examining different readings of a photo can help photographers, media and content producers for better transaction of the message and restrict other possibilities (meanings). In this research, the main and most basic question is about the variety and affecting factors of audience readings from news photos. It should be taken under consideration that is news photo consider as an artistic photo? How far can these photos affect the audience and start social movements? Can these images have a different reading from the real message of photographer and its published media?
Hence, in this research five photos among the most controversial news photographs of the decade (2010 - 2019) has been selected and analyzed by analytical - descriptive method, the audience reading of the pictures has been examined by using Stuart Hall's theory. These five photos are 'The crying Girl at the Border' (John Moore, 2018), 'Venezuela's Crisis' (Ronaldo Schemidt, 2017), 'Captured Bird in Oil' (Charlie Riedel, 2010), 'Aisha' (Jodi Bieber, 2010) and 'Assassination in Turkey' (Burhan Ozbilici, 2016).
Stuart Hall's theory of receiving in the article ‘Encoding and Decoding in the Television Discourse' (Hall, 1973) states that the meaning of the text is in a place somewhere between the transmitter and the receiver of the message. The transmitter encrypts the concept in his / her message in a particular way, but the receiver may decrypt it in a slightly different format. Hall classifies different readings into three categories: Hegemonic (Dominant) reading, Negotiated reading and Oppositional reading. In his view, the media encrypts its works according to the target community and social contexts of that group, but the audience (receivers) is far from the media's goal and behaves differently while facing the messages. So, despite of the media's attempt to induce a message and impose it on the audience, the recipient of the message shows different readings according to his or her way of thinking and social class in which he lives. The audience, who trusts the media, receives Dominant reading of that product. The audience, who trusts the media but reflects on the message and compares his perception with it, receives Negotiated type of this product. The audience who is unreliable to the media and believes its messages are manipulated receives Oppositional type of reading.
Also, in order to analyze the content, semiotics and composition, Pierce's opinions have been used to investigate the factors affecting the diversity and plurality of readings. Charles Sanders Peirce has provided the most complete classification for signs. He examined and categorized a sign from various aspects. His classification is the most important type of classification in semiotics science. His views have special emphasis on 'implication', so recognition of signs, interpretation and subject are of the foundations of his theory. In this study, three groups of signs- iconic, indexical and symbolic -have been selected from a variety of species explained by Pierce that are more used to study media and cultural phenomena.
The researchers in this study first examined the narrative and marginalization associated with each image, and then examined the composition and semiotics of it, and at the end, different readings received from each item collected by library method, and classified in three categories : The Dominant, Negotiated and Oppositional according to the results obtained from the research, it can be said that the news photo has characteristics that distinguishes it from the other types of photos, such as photography in a very short time interval, without prior knowledge and reflection of reality without any siding; but despite all these differences, news photography can be considered an artistic photography as well. News photos can cause movements. News photographers are at the forefront of the struggle to maintain the free flow of information and publish the most unseen events to the world. These photos can trigger a common sense, such as sympathy or anger, and accompany the audience in the shortest possible time and create a challenge against the current situation. The value of news photos, despite the very momentum nature of them, has a great deal of dependence on proper composition, impact and meaningful elements, speed of photographer and his choices.
The ambiguity of the image, focusing on wrong subjects, choosing inappropriate shutter speed, wrong depth field, and so on can push a photo away from its true value. If in each of these parameters, an inappropriate or wrong selection happens, the photo cannot transmit its message clearly. Each news photo, despite the purpose of the photographer and the publisher media, can have different readings from the audience side. In other words, each photo – after its publication - starts its free way to inform and acknowledge, and the publisher no longer has the authority on the message which has been received by the public; but this route can be guided by the conscious selection of the photographer, paying attention to the proper composition and layout of the visual elements in the photo, better framing, attention to color and optical spectrum, appropriate focus point, minor correction and editing. The message transmitted from the photo largely depends on the number of Dominant or Oppositional audiences. Nowadays, the message of the photo is determined by the interactions of the audience on the internet and social networks. Although by promotional techniques and public opinion guidance, these views can be partially guided, however, the more fans of one of these groups to the other, the more the message will be directed to their category. Even though this reading (message receiving) is in conflict with the main purpose of the photographer. Few news photos can be found where there is no conflicted type in it. Therefore, the relevant photographer and media should limit any side view by selecting right picture and right edition.