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Reuters Admits Second Hajj Photo was Doctored, Pulls All of His Photos


Caught again! Reuters pulled a second photo by Adnan Hajj, which Rusty Shackleford proved was also doctored:

On Monday, it added further charges, saying he had manipulated at least one other photo -- and that all of his recent pictures had been deleted from the news agency's data base.

Reuters also said today it had put in place a tighter editing procedure for images of the Middle East conflict to ensure that no photograph from the region would be transmitted to subscribers without review by the most senior editor on the Reuters Global Pictures Desk, according to a Reuters spokeswoman.

"There is no graver breach of Reuters standards for our photographers than the deliberate manipulation of an image," said Tom Szlukovenyi, Reuters Global Picture Editor, in a statement. "Reuters has zero tolerance for any doctoring of pictures and constantly reminds its photographers, both staff and freelance, of this strict and unalterable policy."

He added that the fact that Hajj had altered two of his photographs meant none of his work for Reuters could be trusted either by the news service or its users.


Its Monday statement, after describing the flap over the first image, reads: "An immediate enquiry began into Hajj's other work. It found on Monday that a second photograph, of an Israeli F-16 fighter over Nabatiyeh, southern Lebanon and dated Aug 2, had been doctored to increase the number of flares dropped by the plane from one to three."

If manipulating a photo is as easy as it appears, then how many others have been manipulated? I don't mean just the Hajj photos at Reuters. Have other photographers manipulated photos to increase their chances of being published?

Michelle Malkin makes a great suggestion:

If Reuters had half a brain, it would post all of Hajj's photos on a separate site and welcome continued blogger analysis that uncovered this debacle in the first place. Withdrawing the photos to cover their tracks is a dumb idea.

If they are interested in the truth, they will harness the power of the Internet's distributed intelligence network--not cut it off.

Update: Allah points out that Reuters didn't pull or delete Hajj's photos - they're still on the wires. They're just not for sale anymore.


Comments (14)

Withdrawing the photos is n... (Below threshold)

Withdrawing the photos is not dumb, if they either knew the photos were faked, or they didn't care since the photos backed up their own bias.

Now they can claim, 'photos, what photos?'. Without the incriminating evidence being available, they can claim that the debunkers' photos are fake.

I remember when National Ge... (Below threshold)

I remember when National Geographic got in a lot of hot water for "moving" the pyramids for a more dramatic effect on one of its cover shots many moons ago.

Now it seems that "fake but accurate" seems to be the new standard.

I agree with Malkin that all of the pictures should be made available for further analysis.

However, unlike her, I commend Reuters for doing the right thing and pulling this terrorist-sympathizer's work and issuing "picture kill" notices to all its subscribers.

But of course, the damage h... (Below threshold)

But of course, the damage has done. Those who first accepted the Reuters photos as real, will not admit they were scammed. The ignorant have already accepted the pictures as fact.

Reuters acted as Hezbollah's PR firm, and they will continue to do so, with or without 'fake but accurate' pictures.

"Reuters has zero tolerance... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

"Reuters has zero tolerance for any doctoring of pictures and constantly reminds its photographers, both staff and freelance, of this strict and unalterable policy."

Are these people realy so inept that they can not see from an actual photograph what a blogger sees immediately on a computer. Perhaps, it is more a matter of print it and see if anyone notices, at which time we can act all upset that someone has the nerve to doctor photographs.

Apologies and retractions are not acceptable for things that you do on purpose, with the intention of seeing if they will float.

Credibility, thy name is not Reuters!

I linked from <a href="http... (Below threshold)
Anyone see Rather lately?<... (Below threshold)

Anyone see Rather lately?

"No longer will Reuters be ... (Below threshold)

"No longer will Reuters be the willing chumps of this photographer", said a spokesman earlier today.

"Reuters remains however, open to the propaganda of other, more skilled, frauds."

"The use of staged scenes is highly recommended over photoshop alterations. Reuters has used these for years but has never been definitively exposed. Suspected yes, but never convicted."

Reuters will continue to show preference for photo's from the Hezbollah media tour. In other news, Reuters has delayed publishing a photo of President Bush secretly leaving the basement of tower #2 shortly before its fall.

Reuters is proud of its record and offers this: "I'm proud of my record". said Bill Clinton and Big Julie, "Twenty eight arrests and no convictions."

That means about 85% of the... (Below threshold)
krazy kagu:


AND THE TALKING HEADS AR... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:


Bryne got his PHD?

This is a none issue. It ... (Below threshold)

This is a none issue. It has very little to do with what the photos show. Come on folks people are having bombs droped on them and the news stations are worried about how dark the smoke is.

Sorry krefish,But wh... (Below threshold)

Sorry krefish,
But whether or not the images and stories the world is told about this (or any) war is important.

The fact is, Israel is working hard to keep civilian casualties down. That hezbolah and its supporters need to doctor photos to show otherwise just helps prove that point.

Geesh.....it's not even a G... (Below threshold)

Geesh.....it's not even a GOOD PhotoShop doctoring job. You can tell where he copied the smoke clouds on both photos without even enlarging them. There is no way that anyone at Reuters didn't KNOW that these were fakes before they put them out there. As a graphic designer....it's hurts to see such a bad photo manipulation job.

When you look at the doctor... (Below threshold)

When you look at the doctored picture of smoke it is not too difficult to notice something is awry. Last time I checked smoke does not billow in symmetrical circle patterns...

Karen, erin:How ri... (Below threshold)

Karen, erin:

How right you are! ... I mean, I have a passing understanding of Photoshop (enough to be dangerous on the copy desk) and those smoke patterns defied all logic. I understand the "explanation" was that the photographer was trying to eliminate dust and made some mistakes due to the poor lighting.

Uh ... right.

For a while there, I thought the military had some pretty cool weapons that made some way cool smoke patterns when they went off ... maybe The Gunny will explain it to us the next time he does a show on military hardware






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