The Ghost of Snapped Shot

Or, welcome to my low-maintenance heck.

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Free College for a Photo Op?

Any sign of objectivity here?
Is it proper for the press to participate in a blatantly staged photo op, even when it's admitted that the people who showed up only did so because they were paid to?

Consider this situation from the "occupied" Golan Heights: In exchange for "free" education in Damascus, around 200 people showed up to "shout" Mother's Day greetings to their "relatives" who lived (presumably, as the caption provided doesn't delve into details) on the Israeli side of the valley.

While it's decent of Bassem to note that these people showed up, in essence, as paid players, take particular note of the purposeful staging of the scenery: We're shown "peaceful" students, a vast gulf of land, and evil barbed wire. (It should be noted that the barbed wire pictured is most likely on the Syrian side of the border, which means it's not evil Zionist barbed wire, but the implication that it is still remains.) All of these combine to form some rather powerful imagery, but is the substance presented in the photographs genuine?

There are no news stories accompanying these photographs as of yet, and I've not determined how old this "ancient" custom is, but if any of y'all are aware of the background behind what's pictured here, please do let me know of it.

My question to you is this: Is a series of photographs like this proper? Even though the motivation of the players is mentioned, it's not uncommon to see details like that removed from the photojournalist's captions when the photograph is used in other media outlets. At what point does it become "improper" for the press corps to cover and transmit photographs of a knowingly-staged event?

 Tags: bassem tellawi fauxtography AP Misinformation


Comments:

#1 Roger+Williams 29-Mar-2007
Haven't seen any updates in a while, so I thought I'd leave a note hoping all is well. I'm looking forward to reading more fauxtography posts!
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