That is somewhat of a misnomer, first of all many agencies (usually a arm of a government body) do issue press credentials which in turn allows or disallows access to certain events such as crime scenes, those who are credentialed may be allowed within the police barriers while those without will remain behind the barriers with the rest of the citizenry. Also many events require the display of a “official” press credential before they will issue their own access credentials as a method of controlling both access and security to those events.
Now is it important to note if an official agency (government) issues press credentials the USSC has ruled they must 1. issue them to all who apply and meet the qualifications and 2. they must not make the cost of the process not unduly expensive or burdensome, however the USSC stopped short of defining the terms “qualify” and “expensive or burdensome.”
Here locally even though both Broward and Miami Dade will by request supply “government issued” media credentials most media issue their own credentials and they are for the most part accepted by the officials controlling access however there are always exceptions that the “government issued” credentials will get one around, however generally speaking once they a single representative of media is allowed to have access they let the entire zoo in, the exceptions being high risk events involving very tight security.
Conversely there are also credentials issued for access by the organizers of events and they can pick and choose who they will and who they will not allow access or where and who they will allow access to regardless of a person “official” credentials or who issued them.
Of course agencies can issue their own credentials but these are not "licenses" in the sense that they are required for you to be recognized as a "journalist". They may or may not be required to grant you access to private events not held on public property or events subject to "national security" requirements. The organizers of a private event are also able to legally pick and choose who they allow into their event, whether you are a journalist or not.
I do not think we are in disagreement here. I was pointing out to that fellow who was insisting that a license had to be granted to be considered a photojournalist that that was simply not the case. In fact, at least in the U.S., there is no such licensing requirement by the government.