News channel Photoshops a politician into skimpier outfit and blames it on AI
An Australian politician has hit back after a News Channel allegedly Photoshopped her into wearing a more revealing outfit. MP Georgie Purcell appeared on Melbourne’s channel Nine News, with visibly larger breasts and a bare midriff.
Rather than just admitting their mistake, the news channel inexplicably blamed the whole debacle on “automation by Photoshop”.
According to The Guardian, the program’s news director, Hugh Nailon passed the buck and called the image a “graphic error”.
“Our graphics department sourced an online image of Georgie to use in our story on duck hunting. As is common practice, the image was resized to fit our specs,” he said.
“During that process, the automation by Photoshop created an image that was not consistent with the original. This did not meet the high editorial standards we have and for that we apologise to Ms Purcell unreservedly.”
Purcell posted the comparison images side by side on her X account, where you can clearly see the differences. “Can’t imagine this happening to a male MP,” she says, and it’s a very good point.
“Unfortunately, the difference for women is that they also have to deal with the constant sexualisation and objectification that comes with having images leaked, distorted and AI-generated,” she told The Guardian.
Adobe has since confirmed what we already know and stated that Photoshop does not work in that way. It (of course) requires a human operative to make changes to images. Even with the new Generative AI feature, it still needs instructions and doesn’t just go rogue on its own, removing women’s clothes.
It hasn’t been a great week for female empowerment and AI, with Taylor Swift being the latest victim of deepfaked pornographic images. It seems, however, that no woman (or gender minority, for that matter) is beyond this contemptuous behaviour. Trans swimmer Lia Thomas found her image photoshopped by NBC’s Today Show to make her appear ‘more feminine’.
It is simply not okay that women still have to endure such disrespect, especially by media outlets that should know better.
[via the guardian]
Alex Baker is a portrait and lifestyle driven photographer based in Valencia, Spain. She works on a range of projects from commercial to fine art and has had work featured in publications such as The Daily Mail, Conde Nast Traveller and El Mundo, and has exhibited work across Europe