Here are a few of the most infamous photo manipulations:
This list is just a fraction of instances collected by photo forensics technologists, Fourandsix, as part of their overview of photo tampering throughout history. Interestingly enough, Foundandsix Technologies is actually making its business off the proliferation of photo manipulation, developing software that will enable you to determine the authenticity of images.
“We’re not out to demonize photo manipulation,” says Kevin Connor, Founder and President of Fourandsix and a 15-year veteran of the team that builds Photoshop-branded products at Adobe. “In the next few years we plan to introduce more tools to enable more in-depth analysis of images. We want the Fourandsix name to be synonymous with photographic truth.”
Keep in mind that photo manipulation applies to everything from that funny photo of a cat you saw on Facebook to images from a security camera presented in court. “Our mission is to provide the tools that allow our customers to find the truth contained within every image,” says Kevin. And as Kevin also points out, this distrust of photography predates digital cameras (hello, famous Ab Lincoln portrait!).
While determining the authenticity of a photograph is a well known problem, just how much does it matter? That’s the question Kevin will address in his talk at Luminance, PhotoShelter’s conference this fall addressing photography, business, and culture.
“Can photos still be trusted?” asks Kevin. “The fun comes from figuring out how to apply [photo manipulation] research to provide a meaningful solution. As people have become more familiar with how much photographs can be manipulated…that special status that photography once enjoyed has faded away.”
Want to hear more from Foundandsix Technologies and our 20+ other organizations that help consume and define photography? Get all of Luminance’s ticket and pricing information here.
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