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Debate Info

26
32
Yes No
Debate Score:58
Arguments:20
Total Votes:74
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Argument Ratio

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 Yes (9)
 
 No (11)

Debate Creator

Loudacris(912) pic



Should it be illegal for the press to manipulate photographs?

Yes

Side Score: 26
VS.

No

Side Score: 32

This is one of those questions to which there are good arguments on both sides of the issue. I'll take the position of people not necessarily believing what they hear but are more apt to believe what they see. While I see nothing wrong with manipulating a photograph for clarity I see much wrong with the manipulation going so far as to "recreate" events and/or the faces that may be involved in them. I also believe that all photography should be marked as being enhanced or manipulated (we're not talking air-brushing here) and in what way or for what reasons. While the press takes free rein in their spin on events and people I don't think it would serve the best interests of anyone if imagery were to be a part of that spin!

Side: Press manipulates everything
4 points

Whilst it probably makes sense to allow certain manipulations to be made, I think in the majority of cases manipulation of photographs by the press should be illegal. To manipulate a photograph and pass it off as an accurate portrayal of the moment is not a practise that the press should be allowed to indulge in.

When a photograph is printed, unless otherwise stated, the vieweris led to believe that the photograph is an accurate depiction. Judgements and opinions can be built based on these manipulated photographs.

A great recent example is the Iranian missile pictures, which were shown to be manipulated to include an extra missile. The photo leaves the viewer believeing that the missile tests were a complete success, and that a certain number of missiles were included. What is closer to the truth is that a number of missiles failed. Giving Iran this "show of strength," with the depiction of a completely successful missiles test, is the kind of silly small manipulations that can flair up problems easily.

Side: Yes
3 points

It's fraud and not unlike the slant forced down our throats from most media today.

What is amazing is that the press will print pictures and most Americans believe this stuff. Even from nations know to lie and be untruthful.

Side: Yes
2 points

As long as they have like some sort of insignia that lets people know that the photo has been edited to an extent. depending on what extent should depend on what type of insignia is imprinted on the photo.

Side: Yes
1 point

There are many aspects of 'news' the 'media' manipulates. Overall the public doesn't question the information presented ; which shows the true 'sphere of influence'. People should create laws to limit the extent many media organizations are going to , for profit .....as the majority of the masses are unaware; first impressions are a b.tch.

Side: Yes

To a degree, it should. If the press is manipulating someone's photograph without the consent of a person and harm is being caused, then the press should be reprimanded.

Side: Yes
5 points

Kind of depends on the level of manipulation. Most photo manipulation for newspapers and the like are simple contrast, color and brightness correction, sometimes necessary for the photo to be publishable. Other manipulations can be innocent ones that are more about composition of then anything.

Of course, it goes without saying that any photo editing that would deliberately mislead the public should be punishable, but in my view this is no different than an article that is deliberately misleading, they should both be handled in a similar way.

Side: No

I think it does a diservice in that people wont trust the media any more. Here's an example of subtle manipulation.

http://tinyurl.com/6btzqo

Supporting Evidence: subtle manipulation (tinyurl.com)
Side: No
2 points

Honestly, I don't have a problem with it. The press should be free to carry whatever types of photographs that it chooses because when a media outlet is exposed for publishing an adulterated image, its embarrassing and their reputation will suffer as a result.

Supporting Evidence: Iran's digital duping embarrasses French media outlet (features.csmonitor.com)
Side: Its called the FREE press for a reason
Mahollinder(893) Disputed
4 points

I'm not particularly knowledgeable about laws concerning media outlets reporting events, but if it became legal (assuming it's not), then it would become part and parcel of the job and the element of "embarrassment" would essentially be removed from consideration because "everybody does it" and it's legal. There would be nothing to be embarrassed about.

But it would also invariably lead to media outlets not simply skewing what they report, but entirely misrepresenting ostensive reporting and thereby no longer "reporting" national, international or local events. The very idea of journalism would lose all of its credibility.

Side: Yes
xaeon(1093) Disputed
4 points

Whilst I agree mostly, I feel that there is a certain amount of moderation (with regards to press manipulation) by the public regardless of what the law may say.

In the UK at least, a media outlet found to consistently manipulate photos and embelish stories (read: The Daily Mail) is held with absolutely no public regard. Whenever I read a story from The Daily Mail, I simply won't believe it unless a more authorative and impartial news source (such as the BBC) also runs the story.

Whilst it probably doesn't affect their sales, there is definately an air of "Oh well, it's only the Daily Mail so I'll take all I read with a very big pinch of salt" amongst the majority of the public.

Also, regardless of whether it would be law or not, I don't think everybody would do it. Certain media outlets would remain impartial and unbiased due to their current standing. I certainly can't see news sources like the BBC or editorials such as The Times manipulating photographs just because The Daily Mail and The Sun do it. At least, like I said, not in the UK; things might be very different in the US.

Side: No
HGrey87(750) Disputed
2 points

The prospect of embarrassment and loss of reputation are meant as natural consequences for misleading their readers/viewers.

Side: Yes
2 points

The news already is known to skew ideas and facts, so changing photos is not much of a jump. Reader beware.

Additionally, it would be difficult to determine which manipulations were legal. Some photo manipulations are to enhance specific items in a photo.

Determining what's actual observation vs intentional distortion is as difficult as figuring out what part of a news story is actually true.

Side: Press manipulates everything
2 points

I say NO GO! NOOOOOOooooooooooooooo...I feel that the press controls to much of what the public sees and reads. What it boils down to is what the major press mongers want you to believe...

Politics is a prime example of that. If you can't tell by reading which side the wind blows from...you can by their pictures...they will always be unfavorable on the opponents side and great pictures on the oppositions side.

Subliminal messages...NOT FAIR!

They don't care if they get busted because any advertising is good advertising.

What is a slap on the wrist...

I do not want to see what is not true. Give me reality.

Southern smiles and world peace,

Sharon

~The Baby Boomer Queen~

Author of BabyBoomerAdvisorClub.com

Side: No
2 points

Aren't there enough laws? American photogs who do this usually get fired. How would you enforce the law in places like Iraq and Iran? Besides, its a great form of entertainment for sharp-eyed bloggers.

Side: No
2 points

however, i do believe that it must be stated somewhere near the picture that it has been enhanced, edited, or otherwise changed from the original.

although what is considered "original" these days?

Side: No
1 point

Media has been given to much power as is

Side: No
1 point

I don't think it should be illegal because most of the time it is simple changes.

Side: No

Fame comes with a price.

Side: No