After getting caught using digitally altered and misleading images of protests in Seattle and its Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ), making them look more violent and dangerous than the reality, Fox News has apologized. It has not explained why it went to such efforts. But we know why.
The Seattle Times explains (emphases added):
As part of a package of stories Friday about the zone, where demonstrators have taken over several city blocks on Capitol Hill after Seattle police abandoned the East Precinct, Fox’s website for much of the day featured a photo of a man standing with a military-style rifle in front of what appeared to be a smashed retail storefront.
The image was actually a mashup of photos from different days, taken by different photographers — it was done by splicing a Getty Images photo of an armed man, who had been at the protest zone June 10, with other images from May 30 of smashed windows in downtown Seattle. Another altered image combined the gunman photo with yet another image, making it appear as though he was standing in front of a sign declaring “You are now entering Free Cap Hill.”
Fox’s site had no disclaimers revealing the photos had been manipulated. The network removed the images after inquiries from The Seattle Times.
In addition, Fox’s site for a time on Friday ran a frightening image of a burning city, above a package of stories about Seattle’s protests, headlined “CRAZY TOWN.” The photo actually showed a scene from St. Paul, Minnesota, on May 30. That image also was later removed.
lmao Fox News is photoshopping an armed guard into pictures about the Capital Hill Autonomous Zone to make it look more dangerous than it is— Michael Hobbes (@RottenInDenmark) June 12, 2020
(h/t @sumromanus!) pic.twitter.com/WtxE8k18KB
They also used a fiery photo from Minnesota as the centerpiece on a package of stories about Seattle. https://t.co/RBF0ttg2ku pic.twitter.com/bElH94RgYW— Gina Cole (@Gina_Cole_) June 12, 2020
Fox News’ “correction” was incorrect, as The Seattle Times noted:
In an emailed statement, a Fox News spokeswoman said: “We have replaced our photo illustration with the clearly delineated images of a gunman and a shattered storefront, both of which were taken this week in Seattle’s autonomous zone.”
That statement is inaccurate, as the gunman photo was taken June 10, while storefront images it was melded with were datelined May 30 by Getty Images.
On Saturday, Fox posted a note at the top of its article and apologized:
Editor’s Note: A FoxNews.com home page photo collage which originally accompanied this story included multiple scenes from Seattle’s “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” and of wreckage following recent riots. The collage did not clearly delineate between these images, and has since been replaced. In addition, a recent slideshow depicting scenes from Seattle mistakenly included a picture from St. Paul, Minnesota. Fox News regrets these errors.
I’ll take Fox at its word that it regrets the photos. And maybe the St. Paul photo was just a stupid mistake like, for example, when Fox mixed up Patti LaBelle and Aretha Franklin and confused Gayle King with Robin Roberts.
But, like the hideous graphic that Fox recently aired (and apologized for) showing stock market gains after highly-publicized murders of African Americans, somebody had to work at the mashup photo.
One look at the Fox article and it becomes clear that Fox made a concerted effort to make the zone look dangerously chaotic – which just happens to be in line with Donald Trump’s dishonest messaging. A few excerpts from the article:
Protesters inside the self-declared autonomous zone in downtown Seattle booed and heckled members of the African American Community Advisory Council Thursday afternoon as the group told demonstrators they had "hijacked" the message of Black Lives Matter.
After weeks of protests, Seattle demonstrators successfully ousted police officers from the East Precinct, forcing them to shutter the building and leave, and attempts at negotiating a police presence have been unsuccessful.
Police officials attempted to enter the East Precinct on Thursday but were jeered by protesters, who have reportedly set up checkpoints with armed guards to keep law enforcement officials away. Other protesters attempted to escort officers to the precinct, to the dismay of their fellow demonstrators.
The article, full of menacing suggestions but no actual violence, was written by Vandana Rambaran. She gives no indication of having been in Seattle, but she does make a point of blaming the photo editor for the “confusion.”
Meanwhile, The Seattle Times, which is on the scene, reported, “The daily scene at CHAZ has mostly been peaceful.”
Just taking a while guess here... that when Fox was unable to come up with any photos of actual violence, it made some up.
On CNN's Reliable Sources yesterday, host Brian Stelter noted how Fox's “straight news anchor” Bret Baier regurgitated Trump’s fear mongering about Seattle protesters as “terrorists” without bothering to fact check or go to the network's own reporter in Seattle for a reality check. Why did Baier quote Trump “like it's normal?” Stelter asked. He added, “I don't know.”
Oh, I think we all know why. I’d say Stelter answered the question in the sage advice of his later remarks:
STELTER: So when you see Fox News digitally manipulating photos like this, trying to show an armed man somewhere he's not, give up on those national outlets that are trying to stoke fear. Rely on local outlets and reporters on the ground who are actually documenting what's going on in Seattle.
You can watch Stelter dissect Fox’s distortions below, from the June 14, 2020 Reliable Sources.
Everyone knows this is not the first time these Fox frauds used deception for their twisted agenda.
The amateur producers at this satanic network are also 100% responsible for putting these lies out to the public. These useless producer bimbettes are not the sharpest tack on the corkboard.