Talk:Paul Graham (photographer)

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This article was automatically assessed because at least one article was rated and this bot brought all the other ratings up to at least that level. BetacommandBot 00:23, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

Why should we believe any of this?[edit]

Graham is a fine photographer (e.g. Beyond Caring). That being so, there's no need to make this article on him read like a sloppily written attempt at a hagiography.

The article makes great claims for Graham. I think that some are right. But few come with any backing that would pass WP:RS. The result is a mess.

I don't have a copy of the recent Hayward catalogue No Such Thing as Society to hand, but I think that this would back up some of the claims made in this article. -- Hoary (talk) 16:19, 6 March 2009 (UTC)

Much of this article borders on plagiarisim[edit]

The article seems to be taken whole cloth from the introduction page of the online Paul Graham Archive. Instances include,

"In 1981/2 he made A1-The Great North Road, a book of 40 colour photographs taken along the length of the British A1 road, which had a transformative effect, dissolving the black and white tradition associated with British Photography to that point. This work, along with Graham's later photographs of the 1980's. . . were pivotal in reinvigorating and expanding this area of photography, by both broadening it's[sic] visual language, and questioning our notions of what such photography could say, be, or look like."

Compare that with,

In 1981/2 he completed 'A1 - The Great North Road', a series of colour photographs from along the length of the British A1 road, which had a transformative effect on the black and white tradition that had dominated British art photography to that point. This work, along with his other photographs of the 1980's. . . were pivotal in reinvigorating and expanding this area of photographic practice, by both broadening it's[sic] visual language, and questioning how such photography might operate

This article should really be cleaned up. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.126.93.165 (talk) 15:29, 20 October 2009 (UTC)

Well said. (Except that it didn't border on plagiarism; it clearly was plagiarism.) And most of the remaining text was similarly plagiarized from a third page. I've deleted these parts.
And plagiarism aside, it was written in terrible MFA-speak. -- Hoary (talk) 12:14, 24 August 2010 (UTC)

OR... the other way around - did it occur for a moment to you that maybe the articles you cite as plagiarized by Wikipedia were in fact the ones taking from the original Wikipedia writings? Certainly lejournaldelamaison.com simply plagiarized wikipedia, but you have erased wikipedia original, and left them as the authentic version! Can you please do better, by contributing rather than cutting. So much was removed this now seems near pointless as a page. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 67.243.9.124 (talk) 12:54, 27 September 2010 (UTC)

Plagiarism is a two way street - Wikipedia is most often the original![edit]

This page has got so heavily edited by 'Hoary' with an overly critical attitude (and interest in Japan, hence that is the one book singled out) that it is now pointless. Please - if another online source is the same as the Wikipedia page it does NOT mean the Wikipedia plagiarized them. Most likely the opposite, don't you think? Certainly lejournaldelamaison.com simply cuts and pastes Wikipedia, possibly the PGarchive site might have taken from Wikipedia too? Check all possibilities before you simply delete other peoples hard work

Create rather than destroy. If you are going to wipe out others labor, then contribute some of your own time and energy rather than just deleting en-masse. This page has lost its usefulness. Well done. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Apprenticepoet (talkcontribs) 23:30, 12 November 2010 (UTC)

You raise several interesting points.
On the matter of plagiarism in general: Yes, you're right; if a Wikipedia page is remarkably similar to a page elsewhere, that doesn't mean that the WP page plagiarized the other: it could have been the other way around, or something more complex may have happened.
On this page: Its history shows an almost uninterrupted growth to this state, before the trimming started. I haven't examined the growth, but yes, gradual growth (as opposed to sudden jumps in size) suggests that the editorial work went on here. So perhaps I was too hasty.
Here is Graham's page about himself. I now notice that it says at its foot Excerpt from Gallery Press Release, 2008. So it's possible that it copied the press release which itself was a copy of the WP article.
So maybe I have an "overly critical attitude". But if so, it's an overly critical attitude toward the editing, not Graham's work. (I've seen some of his early work from Beyond Caring and think it's very good; I know little about his other work.)
Why the apparent concentration on Japan? First, it's hardly a concentration; it's simply the addition of a sourced fact. And, if you're interested, here's how it came about. Having created Category:Photography in Japan, I populated it. Racking my brain for non-Japanese photographers who'd done a significant amount of work in Japan was a pleasant activity for a commuter trip or three; I also emailed a couple of friends more knowledgable about the matter than I am. Graham's name came up, either to one of them or to me. I was certain that he'd done work in Japan so I put this in -- in accordance with WP policy, backing up the assertion with a reliable source.
This was a contribution of time and energy, though admittedly a tiny one. Graham's work seems to have many admirers. I was hoping and expecting that among themselves they'd rebuild the article. I'd be willing to help with this. While not working on Graham's article, I've been working on articles about other photographers.
So let's turn back the clock to September 2008, before the cuts. Here's a paragraph:
Graham was the first photographer to combine the sensibility of contemporary colour photography with classic British social documentary. In 1981/2 he made A1—The Great North Road, a book of 40 colour photographs taken along the length of the British A1 road, which had a transformative effect on the black and white tradition that had dominated British art photography till that point. This work, along with Graham's later photographs of the 1980s - the colour images of unemployment offices in Beyond Caring (1984-85), and the sectarian marked landscape of Northern Ireland Troubled Land (1984-86) - were pivotal in reinvigorating and expanding this area of photography, by both broadening it's visual language, and questioning our notions of what such photography could say, be, or look like. Photographers like Martin Parr made the switch to colour soon after, and a new school of British Photography evolved with the subsequent colour work of Richard Billingham, Tom Wood, Paul Seawright, Anna Fox, Nick Waplington, etc.
Let's suppose for a minute that this is legitimate WP text, and not ripped off from somewhere else. Its content is a mixture of the easily verifiable and the arguable. Was he the first photographer to make this combination? Did this one book have a transformative effect? Why "British art photography" (my emphasis)? How were they "pivotal"? This stuff would have to be sourced. (Yes, writing for WP is a bitch.)
Backing for some and perhaps even all of this is probably within Williams' text for How We Are and Mellor's for No Such Thing as Society. Do you have either of these? -- Hoary (talk) 01:35, 13 November 2010 (UTC)