Reuters Recalls Fake Beirut Photo After Exposed by Blogs
Reuters has recalled an “altered” photograph hours after coming under assault from the blogosphere.
A Reuters photograph of smoke rising from buildings in Beirut has been withdrawn after coming under attack by American web logs. The blogs accused Reuters of distorting the photograph to include more smoke and damage.
The photograph showed two very heavy plumes of black smoke billowing from buildings in Beirut after an Air Force attack on the Lebanese capital. Reuters has since withdrawn the photograph from its website, along a message admitting that the image was distorted, and an apology to editors.
In the message, Reuters said that “photo editing software was improperly used on this image. A corrected version will immediately follow this advisory. We are sorry for any inconvience.”
Earlier, Charles Johnson, of the Little Green Footballs blog , which has exposed a previous attempt at fraud by a major American news corporation, wrote : “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.”
Take one night off from blogging to fight a cold and all hell breaks loose. . . .
Charles Johnson, Rob @ Left and Right, Michelle Malkin, Ace, and AllahPundit are among those who got on this one early and all provide excellent roundups of the photos, evidence, and blog coverage. Johnson, Rob, and Allah, especially, dug up most of the evidence.
Updated to include the image of the “picture kill” memo itself.
UPDATE: Rusty catches Hajj in yet another photoshopping.
Reuters has announced that it will not use any more of Hajj’s photos. (Contrary to some reports, he hasn’t been “fired.” Stringers can’t be fired, since they’re not employed.)
Ed Driscoll has a retrospective on how Reuters changed from the world’s most respected wire service to its present unreliable state.