Reuters uses hoax-detection software for images

In much the same way as I use RealPlayer, or so it would seem. That is, it’s on my desktop.

But it doesn’t get opened very often.

CNET, January 2006:

Farid’s interest in photo retouching isn’t just historical. The professor of computer science and applied mathematics runs [Dartmouth]’s Image Science Group, which has emerged as one of the chief research centers in the U.S. for developing software to detect manipulation in digital photographs.

While some of the group’s software is now used by the FBI and large media organizations such as Reuters, a version written in Java will come out soon that will be easier to use and thereby allow more police and media organizations to sniff out fraud. The current software is written in Matlab, a numerical computing environment.

“I hope to have a beta out in the next six months,” Farid said. “Right now, you need someone who is reasonably well-trained to use it.”

Again: so it would seem.

Speaking of which, yesterday Reuters was insisting that no editor had looked at Hajj’s photos:

The two altered photographs were among 43 that Hajj filed directly to the Reuters Global Pictures Desk since the start of the conflict on July 12 rather than through an editor in Beirut, as was the case with the great majority of his images.

Today they’re admitting one did:

Garry Hershorn, a photo editor for Reuters, says the Beirut smoke photo was retracted immediately after it was transmitted.

“This one slipped through the system,” Hershorn says. “It just came in. A photo editor looked at it and coded it and sent it to our clients.”

Which news agency filed the original, erroneous report suggesting the image hadn’t been pre-screened?

Right. Reuters.