An Apology

I have an unfortunate habit of uploading photographs in my blog without acknowledging the source. Frankly, in my early days of blogging, I was not even properly aware that this is unethical and in some cases illegal. However I have tried to mend my ways and these days I try to acknowledge nmy sources, whenever I reproduce an article or photograph.
Unfortunately in my post The Harrier and the Moorhens I neglected to mention the sources of the photographs. This was not really intentional. I uploaded the photographs but I did not notice that the photo credits had not been uploaded.
Anyway Mr Debashis Ray, who had authored this post was annoyed and rightly so.
I reproduce what he had to say :
Read the post on the blogspot together with the introduction by my friend. Thank you for posting the article to a larger audience. There is however one peeve. I am not sure whether Swapan Sen or you deleted the photo credits from below the photographs. These photographs were not my own but that of GM Garg (in real life a railway Stores officer) and Lip Kee (Dr LK Yap a gynecologist) selected from the Wiki media Commons/Flickr collection. Their permission said that I should give them credit by mentioning their names and not use the photos in a commercial publication. They will certainly feel let down if they see their photographs used without any indication of who took them. Bird photography is a difficult, expensive and time consuming hobby. Apart from skill with a camera and the special attachments, it requires hides and hours of patient waiting for the correct moment to click. Even then my reading in my young days showed that only about one in thirty shots came out good enough to display. So to get these shots Garg and Yap probably spent more time than I spent birdwatching. Even if they had not requested it, it would be unfair to print their photographs without mentioning them by name. And it may mislead some of your readers to think that I am a skilled photographer! I would request you to include photo credits in future post, wherever the photographer has been specifically mentioned. I have added the credits in the post concerned and I apologise to all my readers for this error.

Comments

akdcts said…
Mr Debashsi Ray further commented : Thank you for the correction. In case I receive any posts from them now, I can refer them to the next issue.
When I was younger and wanted to take up a full time career in nature photography and writing, I had noticed that in many books and magazine articles, the photographer/artist who had illustrated the article had not even found mention. This was especially amiss in nature articles as the pictures often told the reader more, than the written text.
This is off course just a part of a larger problem. Our culture does not hold abilities like manual skill and labor at par with cerebral capability. We are subconciously taught to regard them with disdain as a lesser ability. For example the Bengali word for farmer-'chasha' also carries a baggage of 'not educated'.
This has an effect that portends ill for the society. People who are educated, even if were on agriculture, will not take up farming as a profession. This is unfortunate as today's farming needs knowledge of pest physiology, fertiliser concentration,role of micronutrients, calculation of water requirements, domestic animal nutrition and disease etc. All of these are better accessed by a college educated person than the average 'chashi'.
Sometime back I saw a post on another blogsite, showing two employment advertisements from Kerala. One asked for a coconut palm climber offering Rs13,000/-per month. The second asked for a computer system analyst at Rs 8,000/- a month. Coconuts have an important role in the economy of Kerala, but traditional coconut pluckers are acutely short as no young person wants to take up the vocation. Apart from effort and age limitation, the job was not looked up to.
We and especially Bengalis, have to learn that the different roles played by people in our society are all important. It is like the role of the feet and hands being looked down on by the head. But the head cannot function independent of the role of the hands and legs or the stomach. Each has its own role to play and they can only function as a whole, not in parts. Our stress and the status we give to the educated professional, the performing artists also denigrates the rest of the jobs. We look down on business (unless wealthy) and shopkeepers. These have already gone to others who do not do so.
Sorry I waxed philosophical on an issue of photo credits, but its better to pen my thoughts than just mull over them and feel sorry.

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