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mapjdlinks on 2009-07-22Photographic truth and manipulation
February 23rd, 2009
We know photographs can be false yet we want them to be true. Indeed, the desire for photographic veracity has persisted, perhaps even intensified, even as knowledge about image manipulation becomes more widespread.
Reflecting on the Oscar ceremonies, MediaGuardian has documented the widespread use of Photoshop to enhance celebrity photographs in fashion and gossip magazines. Every cover, says one media insider, has been altered to some degree, with some of these changes exposed in the “Photoshop Hall of Shame” and “Photoshop Disasters”. So common is the practice that when an October 2008 Newsweek cover of Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin was not airbrushed, conservative anchors on Fox television complained that this amounted to liberal bias. (Fox knew about the political power of such changes because it had earlier manipulated the photos of two New York Times journalists it wanted to discredit).