Highlight History: [b]Nov 23, 2002[/b] In Nov 2002, the news agency Reuters had a bone to pick with the Daily Mail for doctoring photos of Michael Jackson. The photos were airbrushed, merged–who knows what else–and published with a negative headline questioning Jackson’s fitness to be a parent. By manipulating the photos, the Daily Mail breached the press commision’s code of practice, part one. It states: “Newspapers and periodicals must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted material, including pictures.” Reuters contractually stipulates that [i]no[/i] alterations can be made to any text or photographs sent out by them by any other news agency. The Daily Mail has a history of being not-so-accurate with information about Jackson and crossed the line when they doctored photographs of him. To read the full report of what happened, click [b]Read More…[/b] STORY [b]Mail’s photo doctoring infuriates agency[/b] Airbrush used on Michael Jackson image on front page Matt Wells, media correspondent Saturday November 23, 2002 The Guardian Reuters, the news and pictures agency, yesterday demanded an explanation from the Daily Mail as to why it doctored pictures of Michael Jackson. The Mail merged two Reuters pictures of Jackson taking his children for a walk in a Berlin zoo with veils over their faces. The paper also airbrushed out Jackson’s security personnel, making the singer appear a more lonely figure. It superimposed the headline “Is he fit to be a dad?”. The action might breach the press complaints commission’s code of practice, part one of which states: “Newspapers and periodicals must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted material, including pictures.” It is thought the Mail could argue that the pictures were not inaccurate, misleading or distorted – because the point of the montage was to show that Jackson’s children were veiled. It might say that the airbrushing was merely to “tidy up” the picture, in order to make it clearer. In its contracts with publishers Reuters makes clear that it forbids alterations of any kind. It is understood that the agency is furious with those made by the Daily Mail. A spokesman for the agency said: “Obviously we take it very seriously, because we do not permit any doctoring of our text or pictures. We have taken it up with the Mail, but as yet we have not yet received a response to our request for an explanation.” The picture was used on Thursday to illustrate a front-page story that began: “This is a family day out – Michael Jackson style. Their heads covered in red veils, his son Prince Michael, five, and four-year-old daughter Paris Michael tour Berlin Zoo with their father.” The paper described the “bizarre sight” as adding to concerns over the singer’s “increasingly odd behaviour”. A day earlier he had been pictured dangling his baby son, called Prince Michael II, over the balcony of his Berlin hotel. The story continued in a double-page spread inside the paper. Paul Dacre, the Daily Mail editor, is one of the 16 PCC commissioners, who decide on complaints against newspapers. If any complaint is made, Mr Dacre would not be involved in the decision. The PCC’s mission statement says: “Editors and publishers must ensure the code is observed rigorously.” Reuters will decide next week what action to take. It could either make a PCC complaint, or threaten to withdraw its contract with the Mail; the second is regarded as more likely. A referral to the PCC would be a rare instance of one media organisation complaining against another. Source: [url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,845752,00.html]guardian.co.uk[/url]

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