Snopes is a well-known, and often useful debunking web site. It is described as “The definitive Internet reference source for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation.
StinkyJournalism found that while a Snopes investigation regarding photographs of the “world’s tallest women” successfully debunked claims that the woman was of record-breaking height, they failed to catch that at least one of the photos was digitally manipulated. They incorrectly stated : “Real Photographs; Inaccurate description” as their conclusion about the e-mail hoax making the rounds.
The hoax involved dramatic photos of a leggy blonde that the accompanying email described as 7’4″ woman, who weighs 320 pounds and lives in Holland.
Snopes correctly reported the woman shown is “Heather Haven,” aka Heather Greene, not of Holland but of Las Vegas. The pictures appear to be gleaned from her nearly defunct website. While extremely tall, she is not the world’s tallest woman and never purported to be. By her own admission, Heather is 6’5 and weighs only 210 Lbs. (She stars in Amazon fetishist videos).
According to Guinness World Records, the title of world’s tallest woman belonged to the late Sandy Allen of Indiana, who stood 7′ 7.25 “. Sandy died in August 2008. Guinness World Records states they “have yet to determine” Sandy’s successor.
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However, Snopes didn’t notice that at least one of the photos was an obvious fake. There is no doubt that the photo shown above of Heather walking down the street with another woman was digitally altered. Look at the circled areas. A bad cut and paste job left part of a car above her shoulder on the left… that does not continue to her right side. The red car circled on the right suddenly stops short before her arm leaving a surreal gap.
Such orphaned fragments, such as these illogical car sections, are called “artifacts” in Photoshop-talk. In fact, the entire side of her body on the right shows clear evidence of a horizontal seam where two ill-matching photos are clumsily put together. Furthermore, the size of the woman’s breasts in this photo, in comparison to the others, indicates that the tall woman in this picture may not even be “Heather Greene.”
While many people were fooled into passing this photo and the others along, some other sites, in addition to Snopes, worked to debunk the myth. SSQQ successfully pointed to Photoshop alterations that were done by the woman’s leg.
Although Snopes was half right, their oversight of this oh-so-obvious fauxtograph is disappointing for such a typically useful and seemingly reliable site. We have written to Snopes for comment and to ask for correction of their error.