Photographers will ?kiss goodbye? to any idea of payment for news images if they send them direct to television companies, warns the Chartered Institute of Journalists (CIOJ).

Instead photographers are urged to first approach a national newspaper for an ?honest? assessment of the image?s value. The photographer should then ask if there is any benefit in the newspaper sharing image rights with a TV company and establish whether it will negotiate with the TV station on their behalf.

The CIOJ?s warning comes in a letter published in the October issue of the Bureau of Freelance Photographers? Market Newsletter which warns that photographers will lose control over images ? and risk not being paid a fee – if they send them direct to a TV channel.

The group suggests that if photographers believe they have a highly newsworthy image they should first ?phone around? national newspapers.

The letter cites the case of a member of the public who is believed to have earned around £60,000 for his amateur video footage of terror suspects aired on ITV during the summer.

The man who captured the images is understood to have first contacted the Daily Mail newspaper which then shared ?exclusive rights? with ITV.

?It suited all sides, the Mail had their exclusive picture aired on television, ITV had the right to screen it and the author had made himself a tidy profit,? writes the CIOJ.

The letter ? signed by CIOJ members including the group?s Photographic Division chairman Paul Stewart – adds: ?The lesson here is obvious. Never, ever automatically send in pictures to any of the TV companies, as they ask you to do on their websites. If you take this route, then kiss goodbye to any idea of payment.?