In “Love and Consequences,” a critically acclaimed memoir published last week, Margaret B. Jones wrote about her life as a half-white, half-Native American girl growing up in South-Central Los Angeles as a foster child among gang-bangers, running drugs for the Bloods. Margaret B. Jones is a pseudonym for Margaret Seltzer, who is all white and grew up in the well-to-do Sherman Oaks section of Los Angeles, in the San Fernando Valley, with her biological family. She graduated from the Campbell Hall School, a private Episcopal day school in the North Hollywood neighborhood. She has never lived with a foster family, nor did she run drugs for any gang members. Nor did she graduate from the University of Oregon, as she had claimed.
A growing number of researchers and companies are looking for such signs of tampering in hopes of restoring credibility to photographs at a time when the name of a popular program for manipulating digital images has become a verb, Photoshopping.
Adobe Systems Inc., the developer of Photoshop, said it may incorporate their techniques into future releases.
“There’s much more awareness and much more skepticism when (people) are looking at images,” said Kevin Connor, a senior director of product management at Adobe. “That’s why we think that’s something we need to get involved in. It’s not healthy to have people be too skeptical about what they saw.”
“This is a photograph that everybody is familiar with. When I first saw it, my eyes lit up: the Tibetan antelopes and the train on the Qinghai-Tibet railroad appeared simultaneously in the eye of the camera. This was such a precise and decisive moment! Thus, this photograph was selected as one of the top 10 most memorable photographs of 2006 and its author received innumerable honors … but on the day before yesterday, I suddenly discovered that there was a very obvious line at the bottom of the photograph.” On February 12, an essay titled Liu Weiqiang’s award winning photograph of the Tibetan antelopes is suspected of being fake was posted to the world’s largest Chinese-language photography forum Unlimited sights and colors. This post quickly drew more than 10,000 page views. As of 7pm last evening, there were 120,478 page views and 1,524 comments. Some netizens even compared Liu with “Tiger Zhou.” Could it be that this photograph was the result of PhotoShop manipulation?
Automated tools like Mr. Baldassi’s are changing the editing of photography by making it possible for anyone to tweak a picture, delete unwanted items or even combine the best aspects of several similar pictures into one.
Something is fishy over at Reuters. The news wire has been caught distributing what appear to be staged photographs of Gaza power outages. Check out the two photographs above, taken by Gaza-based Reuters photographer Mohammed Salem.
The captions for the pictures read “Palestinian lawmakers attend a parliament session in candlelight during a power cut in Gaza January 22, 2008.”
Except… look closely at the pictures. Is that sunlight steaming in through the windows? Yes. Yes it is. They’re holding a parliamentary session by candlelight during the daytime.
Lots of buzz online about the termination of editor Dave Seanor over this cover, which refers to a thoughtlessly stupid remark by golf anchor Kelly Tighman.
It’s worth noting that the controversy over this cover is inextricably wrapped up in its conceptual quality. The insipid stock image brings nothing to the package that isn’t explicit in the headline. The noose may be a loaded cliché, but that doesn’t mean it’s not just as tiresome on a magazine cover as any other over-used icon.
I have to admit I was a little baffled by the response. Aren’t sports the province of the ubiquitous fanny pat? Aren’t players in each other’s faces all the time during athletic matches? Yes and yes. So what’s a little game-time hug in that universe?
Well, apparently this photo crossed a line for some readers, some of whom demanded an apology and/or an explanation.”