17 year old photo repurposed as Hurricane Isaac by AP sites

Earlier today, a friend of mine shared a spine-chilling photo on Facebook. The photo was supposed to be of Hurricane Isaac looming just off Key West, Florida.

As I looked at the image, I had a bit of a ‘de-ja-vu’ kind of moment. I remembered seeing that SAME photo, only under the name of Katrina. How I knew was the tiny ships you can see when you look close enough.

Well, last week I learned of Google’s new Image Search feature that helps uncover your own images that may be used elsewhere without permission. I thought this was a good time to put that service to the test.

Given all the ruckus about image use, attribution, copyright infringement and all the news/journalism service suing average bloggers, I thought this was quite interesting.

Have a look at the captures I snagged up

Exhibit A

The original use of the image (as best I can tell) is by The Flying Kiwi aka Richard Seaman in his article titled Highlights of Brunei

Exhibit B

hurricane isaac - associated press sites using fake picture without proper credit2

Exhibit C

hurricane isaac - associated press sites using fake picture without proper credit

Since they snagged it via Twitter, I guess that makes it okay?!?!

Whether or not Richard Seaman is the original owner of this image, his post predates Hurricane Isaac and Hurricane Katrina. If he isn’t, perhaps he can point us in the right direction so that the original owner may receive credit for their work.

I think it’s horseshit that small time bloggers are being sued by major corporations over image use – then turn around and see something like this!

What do you think about major media outlets using images without proper attribution? It only took me a couple of minutes to uncover the oldest mention – couldn’t they have done the same thing? Furthermore, what about their misrepresenting the image by claiming it is Isaac when it actually belongs to a storm that occurred some 17 years ago?

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