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Reuters Photo Outright Lie By: HonestReporting.com
HonestReporting.com | Monday, August 07, 2006


The conflict between Israel and the Iranian-backed terror group Hezbollah has produced some of the most distorted and biased reporting we have seen in years. Despite evidence that Israel is taking unprecedented steps to avoid civilian casualties, some in the media have accused the IDF of using disproportionate force against a harmless civilian population. With little evidence to back up this claim, some are even resorting to outright fraud as in the following case.

LITTLE GREEN FOOTBALLS EXPOSES REUTERS' LIE

Little Green Footballs is a blog run by Charles Johnson that has frequently been the first to expose media distortions and other breaking news from the Middle East. Knowing just how far dishonest journalists will go when attacking Israel,  Johnson was immediately suspicious when he noticed the following Reuters photograph that was sent to media outlets worldwide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writing in LGF, Johnson claimed:

This Reuters photograph shows blatant evidence of manipulation. Notice the repeating patterns in the smoke; this is almost certainly caused by using the Photoshop "clone" tool to add more smoke to the image.

Smoke simply does not contain repeating symmetrical patterns like this, and you can see the repetition in both plumes of smoke. There's really no question about it. It's not only the plumes of smoke that were 'enhanced.' There are also cloned buildings.

Faced with an onslaught of bloggers taking up the case and demonstrating how clearly the picture had been doctored, Reuters finally came clean and admitted that the picture was a lie. Attempting to stop the worldwide distribution, Reuters issued a "photo kill" and explained to news outlets:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PICTURE KILL FOR LBN20 TRANSMITTED AT APPROXIMATELY 1408GMT ON AUGUST 5, 2006. PHOTO EDITING SOFTWARE WAS IMPROPERLY USED ON THIS IMAGE. A CORRECTED VERSION WILL IMMEDIATELY FOLLOW THIS ADVISORY. PLEASE REMOVE THE IMAGE FROM YOUR SYSTEMS. WE ARE SORRY FOR ANY INCONVENIENCE.

Reuters needs to explain clearly to the public several critical issues:

  1. Why did a Reuters photographer manipulate the images to make the damage look more severe than it was;
  2. How could Reuters editors not catch the fraud when a blogger and a group of amateur photographers noticed it easily;
  3. What steps is Reuters taking to punish those involved in the creation and distribution of this forgery and what Reuters is doing to prevent these hoaxes in the future.

You can contact Reuters at a number of e-mail addresses listed here.

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