UPDATED! Blade reports results
of Detrich investigation; AME comments

The Blade of Toledo, Ohio, on Sunday said an internal investigation into former staff photographer Allan Detrich, who digitally altered a photo that ran in the paper March 31, revealed additional photos altered by him over the last three months.

To put it bluntly, the numbers can only be described as massive.

In a column written by Blade vice president and executive editor Ron Royhab, the paper reports that Detrich submitted 947 photos for publication consideration since January of this year. Of those 947, director of photography Nate Parsons found 79 of them to have been digitally altered.

Detrich is a former Pulitzer Prize finalist and four-time Ohio Photographer of the Year recipient. He had been with the Blade since 1989. When the March 31 photo was found to have been digitally altered and Detrich admitted to doing so -- claiming he altered it for personal use and accidentally sent that version to the paper -- he was suspended by the Blade. He resigned the next day as the paper's investigation got under way.

Reached by the SND Region 4 Blog via e-mail on Sunday afternoon and given the opportunity to tell his side of the story, Detrich asked for his privacy to be respected and offered up the expected "No comment."

A quick breakdown of the findings: 27 of the 79 appeared in both the print product and online; 31 appeared exclusively at ToledoBlade.com; 21 were not selected for publication.

From Royhab's Sunday column:
The changes Mr. Detrich made included erasing people, tree limbs, utility poles, electrical wires, electrical outlets, and other background elements from photographs. In other cases, he added elements such as tree branches and shrubbery. Mr. Detrich also submitted two sports photographs in which items were inserted. In one he added a hockey puck and in the other he added a basketball, each hanging in mid-air. Neither was published.
Read Royhab's column in its entirety at ToledoBlade.com. And you can read NPPA's Sunday story on the findings, as well.

The SND Region 4 Blog has additional coverage and commentary.

Blade AME/Administration Luann Sharp commented via e-mail to the Region 4 Blog on Monday and offered an inside look at the newsroom's philosophy moving forward. A glimpse at what she has to say:

The most challenging part of this whole process has been one of education. Some readers questioned why we felt the issue was so important. Even a handul of staff members thought we over-reacted to the whole matter.

Our focus has been to point out that our photographers are journalists, too. They show readers what happened, warts and all. We can't accept anything less.

Our photography staff has been tremendous. They are disappointed that a co-worker altered photos and are firmly behind us as we try to explain to the rest of the staff and our readers why we must have zero tolerance for digitally altering photos.
To read more of Sharp's comments, head over to the SND Region 4 Blog.

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Blogger Nicole said...

oh my god. you have see these fotos.

he ADDED a baseketball. I'm so sad.


Sunday, April 15, 2007 9:36:00 AM  

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