Newsom Ad Features Photoshop Disaster

San Francisco mayor's gubernatorial campaign uses old Soviet tactic to rewrite history

View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print

    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Gavin Newsom for Governor 2010
    Is he supposed to be holding two signs? And how many arms does he actually have, three?

    Gavin Newsom's YouTube campaign commercial "This is the Race" might go viral after all -- but for entirely the wrong reasons.

    The campaign, which is struggling to raise cash for Newsom's gubernatorial bid and is therefore distributing the advertisement for free on YouTube, edited a photo to insert what's supposed to be a sign held by a Californian calling for a constitutional convention.

    Which Californians do, actually, support. But in the case of this Photoshop disaster, you can clearly see the pixels.

    NBC Bay Area contributor Matthew Baume was the first to spot the gaffe, and SF Citizen picked up the meme and ran with it -- with hilarious results.

    This is not the first time Photoshop has been used for propaganda purposes. During John Kerry's presidential campaign, he was placed next to noted communist sympathizer Jane Fonda. And last year, Iran circulated an image of a missile launch copied-and-pasted multiple times in the hopes of looking more menacing.

    In fact, the practice of rewriting history through photo editing goes back at least to Joseph Stalin's Soviet Union.

    So it's not like campaign professionals are unaware of how bad it looks to try to spin messages with clumsy photo compositing. And it doesn't exactly bolster one's technology credentials when, clearly, You Suck at Photoshop.

    Jackson West has 'shopped many an image in his day, but only for intentionally comedic purposes.