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Paper Monitor

11:31 UK time, Friday, 19 February 2010

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

It's the 20th anniversary of Adobe Photoshop, and this tool, so vital in Fleet Street these days, is celebrated in the Metro.

There's a lovely selection of examples including non-existent missiles, disembodied hands and super-shrunk waists. It's enough to make even the hardiest picture editor blanch a little.

The Daily Mail has a story about photo manipulation but doesn't shoehorn the Photoshop anniversary into it.

Instead it brings you the front-page bombshell "Palace: William does NOT use black hair dye".

Well, Paper Monitor also does NOT use black hair dye. Indeed, and this is regrettable for the black hair-dye industry, most people do NOT use black hair dye. The default setting is probably leaving your hair alone, particularly among the male population.

Reporting on something not happening is a funny thing.

The reason for the Daily Mail's story is a shot of Prince William where his hair looks a bit darker than usual.

The Mail explains that this is down to "studio lighting and technical jiggery-pokery".

But does the Daily Mail audience not know that photos sometimes come out looking a bit different to reality? Is their readership dominated by people who think photos steal a bit of your soul?

And speaking of the picture editors, they often face difficult decisions. For instance, should one run a picture of Silvio Berlusconi's dental hygienist and a potential political candidate on page three of the Daily Telegraph?

Err, not sure?

Does seeing the image alter your view?

Ah, you say "yes" now? And was that a "hubba hubba" I hear?

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