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From the Faux-tography Archives

John on September 9, 2006 at 6:49 pm

During the height of the Iraq war an LA Times photographer named Brian Walski took two shots of a British marine warning people to stay down during an air raid. Here they are:

actual1.jpgactual2.jpg

Notice how in the first one the man is rising up with a child in his arms. In photo #2 the man is partly obscured, but the marine has taken a more dramatic stance. Now here’s the photo that appeared above the fold on page one of the LA Times March 31, 2003 (he was fired the next day, April fool’s day).

altered.jpg

Notice that the best elements of the two photos have been combined into one great shot. You can also see, if you look closely, that they guy in the white shirt on the far left appears twice. Once on the left of the soldier and once behind him, with his face obsured.

You can read a description of the incident including the admission from the photographer (who had a 25 year career) that he had in fact altered the image here.

Faux-tography is nothing new. The rewards for a powerful image are great, great enough to distort the coverage in ways subtle (like smoke) and not-so-subtle (like a burning Koran).

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Category: MSM & Bias |

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