The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
 
Prof. Wingard's Death Ray Hoax, 1876
Fake Photos of Very Large Animals
Van Gogh's ear exhibited, 1935
Mule elected G.O.P. committeeman, 1938
Lord Gordon-Gordon, robber of the robber barons, 1871
Old-Time Photo Fakery, 1900 to 1919
Cat that walked 3000 miles to find its owners, 1951
The Crown Prince Regent of Thulia, 1954
Swiss peasants harvest spaghetti from trees, 1957
Taco Bells buys the Liberty Bell, 1996
The Fake General Dunwoody
In November 2008 Ann Dunwoody was promoted to the rank of four-star general, making her the first female four-star general in U.S. history. To publicize the event, the U.S. Army released a photo of Dunwoody to the media. However, Bob Owen, Director of Photography at the San Antonio Express-News, noticed that the image (top) appeared to have been altered, and he soon found the original version (bottom) on the internet.

In the original image, Dunwoody could be seen sitting in an office with a bookshelf behind her. This background had been replaced by a U.S. flag. In addition, her face had been smoothed to make her appear more youthful.

The Army insisted the manipulation of the photo did not violate army policy, which only prohibits the editing of images "to misrepresent the facts or change the circumstances of an event."

Nevertheless, since this was the second incident in two months in which the Army had been caught supplying altered images to the media (see the case of Staff Sgt. Dawson from Sep. 2008), the Associated Press suspended the further use of photos provided by the Defense Department.

Links and References
• Row over altered US Army photo. (Nov 19, 2008). BBC.
• Army manipulated general's photo. (Nov. 15, 2008). Associated Press.
• Photoshop, Part III. (Nov. 14, 2008). Columbia Journalism Review.


All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.