Saturday, May 05, 2007
How do you tell which horse is Circular Quay and which is Zanjero?
Hard Spun from Stormello?
Cowtown Cat from Scat Daddy?
It is a photo editor's potential e-mail nightmare.
That wasn't Street Sense in that picture! It was Any Given Saturday you idiot! You guys know nothing about horses and I am thinking about canceling my subscription.
Ah, yes. The age-old threat.
I'm trusting that our paper relied on wire services like the AP and Getty Images to get those IDs right. We all know that if a newspaper misidentified a photo Barbaro all hell would break loose.
But is that crime as aggregious as the crime of misidentifying actual people? In an e-mail to Poynter's Jim Romenesko a couple of months back, you'll remember that e-mailer David Mills was annoyed that even well-known African-Americans were misidentified in photo captions. Said Mills, "Ever notice how black people are often misidentified in newspaper and magazine photo captions? I mean famous black people. It’s a weird phenomenon.
"...In last month's James Brown tribute issue of Rolling Stone, there's a photo on page 48 with this caption: "Brown with Sharpton in 1974.” Alas, the man seated next to J.B. isn’t the Rev. Al Sharpton; it’s trombonist Fred Wesley. (Sharpton pointed this out to listeners of his syndicated radio talk show, saying "it ain't me," according to Richard Prince’s blog.) Forget how widely exposed Rev. Al’s face is. Fred Wesley is one of the great musicians, arrangers and bandleaders in funk and soul music going back 35 years. The editors of Rolling Stone should know what he looks like."
Mills didn't say what several non-media types who are black, would: "Yo, we don't all look alike."
But do all horses do look alike, and by virtue of that statement I am equestrice, not prejudice.
Media critics have used the frequent mistakes to push for more people of color to be hired on the copy and photo desks in newspapers and magazines. I mean, you don't want to be the mag that misidentifies Harold Ford Jr. for Obama.
Not a good look.
And in the horse-world, mistaking one horse for another is probably just as bad.continue...