Globe & Mail: Photo of Syrian Boy not Photoshopped

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(Credit: Globe and Mail, screenshot)

The Globe and Mail defended a June 6 front-page photo‘s authenticity in a recent story by the newspaper‘s public editor Sylvia Stead.

Stead wrote about the photo of “a Syrian boy walking next to the rubble of a shelled-out house” and the newspaper’s photo editing policy, after readers questioned it for Photoshop.  The picture showed not only the boy, but his mirror reflection, which prompted readers’ concerns, she explained.

See here the June 5 Associated Press photo, which was also published by ABC News, the Atlantic and the Palm Beach Post.

According to Stead, the newspaper “could have been clearer” in explaining the mirrored image to avoid these questions, but she also included the newspaper’s photo policy, which orders that photos “must never be manipulated, combined or distorted either in a camera or on a computer. News photographs must not be staged and must not be re-enacted from incidents or events,” she wrote.

We wrote earlier this year about another photo issues with the Globe and Mail.  In that case, the Globe and Mail published a Reuters photo from 2004 with its coverage of a February 2012 fire in Honduras.  While Reuters sent a “disclaimer that the photo was not current,” the photo still made it to publication.  At that time, Stead explained the newspaper’s policy also advises:

“However, subjects in portrait, studio and fashion shoots may be directed and posed by photographers.”

We wrote in May when the BBC apologized for publishing a 2003 photo of Iraq with its coverage of a massacre in Syria. Also in May, we wrote about three UK news outlets that decided to run “graphic photos of dead Syrian children,” despite the UK Press Complaints Commission’s guidance against graphic photos.

We have written to Stead asking if the full guidelines for the newspaper are published anywhere or are available and will update with any response.


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Globe & Mail Defends Photo of Syrian Boy from Photoshop Questions

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