news photo editor at NPR | former photo editor/tumblr editor at WIRED | photojournalist | baker of pies | CA -> DC
abbreviated daylight

Stewart doesn’t think Silicon Valley is beyond skewering, and God knows he’s class-conscious. He lists the ways that he’s privileged: first and foremost he is a man, and a white man at that, which he notes gives him a huge advantage over being born black or a woman, and what’s more, he was born to affluent parents in an English-speaking country, at just the right moment in history for what he does. Oh, and he grew up on a commune.
His phone rattles with a message. It’s Joel Johnson. He’s blinking. All of Gawker is going to begin using the paid version of Slack. “We decided to pay so we could have maximum integrations,” Joel says, like all good tech journos, via instant messenger. “And because I like paying for software that we use. The price is so fucking painful, though. It’s just not priced for large organizations.”
But nonetheless Gawker slid its dollars across the table, and now everyone at Gawker Media uses Slack. Even Valleywag.

MORE: The Most Fascinating Profile You’ll Ever Read About a Guy and His Boring Startup

Sometimes I photograph people who do things.
(c) Ariel Zambelich/WIRED
Frank Miller.
(c) Ariel Zambelich/WIRED
Outtake from Meet ‘Project Zero,’ Google’s Secret Team of Bug-Hunting Hackers. 

I was interviewed about my work for this week’s Mossless In America column on VICE

MOSSLESS: If you could change anything about the way photography is taught, what would it be?
Sean Stewart: I would stop cheating young artists out of a future. I think there are a few overlooked paths to forging a professional life out of photography. The raising cost of higher education and the fact that so few jobs are available just doesn’t add up for most people. If you really want to do something great, invest in your equipment, travel, and make work you really care about. There are technical concerns and philosophical hurdles to overcome that can’t be done alone in a room, so surrounding yourself with artists and sharing work is extremely important. The internet is probably the most important tool to learn. 
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Here is Marine Corporal Jose Armenta in his tent on the night before getting blown up in Afghanistan. He jokes with Mulrooney and Berry and the medic the guys have nicknamed “Christ.” He feeds and waters his dog, Zenit, a sable-coat German shepherd.
He lets Buyes, who will be dead in three months, ruffle Zenit’s fur, for the radioman is crazy about the dog. Then he takes Zenit outside in the waning light of this dusty, desert otherworld to train.
They’re happiest like this. Jose has Zenit sit, which the dog does obediently, and then Jose jogs 50 yards down and hides a rubber toy, a Kong, up against a mud wall, covering it with dirt.
On Jose’s command, Zenit bursts forward, zigging in search of it, tail wagging. It’s an intricate dance. Voice commands met by precise canine action, always with the same end goal in mind—to find the toy. Tomorrow, on patrol, the objective will be finding not a toy but an improvised explosive device, or IED, one of the Taliban’s most brutally effective weapons against American troops here in what many consider the most dangerous province in one of the world’s most dangerous countries. And no dog can find every bomb every time.
The Dogs of War