Monday, August 7, 2006

A history of manipulation

If you do follow the news on the Internet, I'm sure that you often go on the web site of the British news agency Reuters. Now, as I'm surfing on the net to get my daily news, I'm reading an article in French that says that this internationally renowned news agency has deleted of its database 920 pictures taken by a Lebanese freelance photographer during the conflict between Israel and Lebanon. In fact, all these things that are probably reported by the news agency Agence France-Presse reveal us that the Lebanese freelance photographer in question has manipulated two pictures.

On Sunday, the news agency Reuters announced on its web site that it was dissociating itself from its freelance Lebanese photographer because he (or maybe she) has apparently modified the pictures that were taken. Do you want to know how the pictures looked like? Well, from what we can see, the photographer in question has used the so brilliant technology provided by the software Photoshop in order to manipulate his two pictures. The picture that shows you a view on Beirut doesn't look really credible, because that employee of Reuters working in Lebanon has multiplied the effect of the Israeli air raids on the capital city of Lebanon.

The column of smoke that you see over the buildings are darker than they were in the original version of the picture. The second picture shows us an Israeli airplane shooting three flares, but we do learn that the number of flares has been brought to three because of the Lebanese photographer's ability to play with Photoshop. Here are the two pictures that you can watch: [1] and [2]. Now, I think that I've read enough news for today and I must keep reading the novel Un dimanche à la piscine à Kigali (A Sunday at the swimming pool of Kigali), from Gil Courtemanche, which is a novel that talks about the genocide that took place in Rwanda in 1994.

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