I made a slightly related observationthe other day as I was looking at a wall of framed vintage photographs in a restaurant.
They all had very formal compositions, very similar to that in classical paintings.
Clearly, the photographers of old were aware of how you build a picture.
Today, most photos are a bit happy-snappy. Even those of famous photographers.
So, I can see were the criticism comes from, even if it's not justified in my opinion.