A grand canyon webcam is no longer in the hands of amateur photographers but is instead managed by an official body, a webcam industry source says.
The Grand Canyon’s Grand Canyon Network (GCN) announced Thursday it is shutting down its webcam service, a move the network said was due to a lack of new operators, a lack the network could offer, and a shortage of “highly qualified” professionals.
The GCN says the closure is a result of an inability to find new, qualified operators and an inability of the industry to offer its services on a consistent basis.GCN President and CEO Joe Ruppe said the network’s current operators have not provided the network with enough time to develop the new ones, so the network will now focus on the development of its own operators.
“We are not looking to change our existing operators to improve the service or our ability to provide it, but we will not be able to do this unless we are able to find a new operator,” Ruppes said in a statement.
Ruppes noted that the GCN had been able to attract some “highly skilled” professionals to the network, but that the demand for its services had been declining.
“The GCn has been a successful and robust organization, and we have learned a lot during the last few years,” he said.
“The GC Network is not going anywhere.”
The GCB announced in August that it was shutting down the Grand Canyon Camera Network.
The GCN said it had been “inundated” by new operators in its last week, but Ruppers said that “a lack of qualified professionals” had made it impossible to provide services to the public.
Rennert said that in a similar situation in 2009, a small group of professional photographers had found a way to offer a service to the Grand Viewers in the Grand Teton National Park.
He said that if the same group had managed to find someone to run a Grand Canyon camera network, “they would have been able … to provide a service that is available to the entire public.”
In 2009, the GCB received more than 2,000 complaints about the service, which included images of “unnatural” behavior.
Ritzheimer, the group’s founder, had hoped to sell the Grand Canyons Camera Network to a company that could sell the service to individuals.
Renzheimer’s plan had included an online app that would allow the user to share photos and videos with other users.
The group initially offered the service through its Facebook page.
Ruth Rosenblatt, the organization’s executive director, said that although she could not comment on the specifics of Rupper’s plan, Rosenblats thought it was important for her to point out that “there are still a number of people who are going to want to get involved in Grand Canyon photography.”
The service has been offered since at least 2012, but it has not been maintained, and it has been discontinued since March, Rosenbach said.