An open letter directed at camera clubs and societies in the UK.
I have received an invitation to enter another audio-visual competition from a local camera club. I expect however, I will once again be ineligible to enter because I don’t conform to the expected standard of running a Windows based computer, or installing Windows on my Mac.
Why am I excluded? Well, there are two programs commonly used to produce Audio Visual presentations on PCs. Pro Show Gold and Pictures to EXE. Both produce EXE files which are containers for the photos and synchronised music that make up an AV.
I predominantly use a (in my opinion superior) program called Fotomagico, which will produce native Mac executables, or video files. Video can be viewed on any platform – including Linux – but the rules don’t permit these files, even though any decent computer will show full HD video without issues.
Examples of Mac produced AVs are here (all video files, and viewable on a PC…)
In my opinion, the Mac provides a superior platform to create these productions, a conspiracy theorist would say that the rules are created to prevent those who can produce better work because they have the better tools winning against the PC masses.
In any case, exclusion is a restrictive mechanism which will only prevent the furthering of the art. It would be like telling photographers that they were not permitted to use digital technology and would have to use film. It’s actually like telling us which brand of camera or memory card we have to use.
Many photographers do use Macs, I think an increasing number. It’s disappointing for them to not be able to partake in the full range of competitions available at club level. What is the purpose of camera clubs and societies? Is it not to develop the hobby and creative art?
Restricting the computers we are allowed to use is very backward thinking and does not move the hobby forward.