Photographer admits to Photoshop propaganda

Mikey 4 comments
Photographer admits to Photoshop propaganda

Forty one year old Liu Weiqing is a well known Photographer under contract with China's state-run news agency to provide photos for China's largest government-run news service.

In 2006 the $4 billion Qinghai-Xizang railway was launched amid environmental concerns and protests that it would threaten the breeding grounds of the endangered antelope which inhabit the area.

After the train services began, a photo appeared in hundreds of newspapers which helped ease some of the environmental concerns. The picture (shown below - click it for larger version) featured antelope walking peacefully across the landscape by the speeding train in the background. Many say the photo is a perfect propaganda piece.


China's state-run television network declared the photo to be among the top 10 of the year for which Weiqing won an award. Weiqing appeared on many national television shows and described how he waited in a pit for 8 days to capture the moment perfectly. "I wanted to capture the harmony among the Tibetan antelope, the train, men and nature".

Now for the interesting part. The photo was displayed in Beijing's subway system, and an anonymous (not surprising) Chinese Internet user raised questions about the photos authenticity when he noticed obvious mistakes.

"At the bottom of the photograph, there was a very obvious line...I examined it very carefully and it was obviously the stitching of two different images."

His accusation created a stir and before anyone knew it every last pixel of the photo was being dissected by Photoshop users and animal behaviour experts.

In the face of overwhelming evidence, Weiqing has now admitted the photo is a Photoshop fake. He has resigned from his position, as has the newspaper editor, and an apology has been printed.

"I have no reason to continue my sacred career as a newsman...I am not qualified for the job."

Weiqing's award has been revoked, and China's largest news organization and several other government news organisations published an apology for circulating the photo. They have all agreed to delete all of Weiqings photos from their database.

Source and Photos: Wall Street Journal Online.

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Tuesday 26th February 2008 | 12:57 PM

lol... i like the telltale 'token' rock

"I have no reason to continue my sacred career as a newsman...I am not qualified for the job."

sacred career? he didnt work for today tonight.. this is just pure gold

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Tuesday 26th February 2008 | 04:49 PM

I suppose that if he came out and said that the government made me do it, he would be shot...

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Tuesday 26th February 2008 | 07:28 PM

Wow hardcore. Almost sounds like he's gonna perform ritual suicide.

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Wednesday 27th February 2008 | 01:36 PM

least to be expected from a chinese

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