Well, sometimes too good to be true, might actually turn out to be right! When in May, blogger Amelia Liana uploaded a stunning photograph of herself at the top of the Rockefeller Center, gazing out at a view of the New York City skyline, a few eagle-eyed followers quickly noticed that something was up. One of the commenters pointed out that One World Trade Centre (formerly called Freedom Tower) — which was completed in 2013 — was notably missing from the city’s skyline. According to Mail Online, one person wrote, “Cute! That’s pre-World Trade Centre (the new one) though…the skyline is very, very different now.” The image has since been removed from Liana’s feed.
With more than 461k followers, Liana’s recent ‘fake’ acts/posts include a photo where she poses outside the Taj Mahal sans the massive crowds of tourists normally seen outside the famous landmark, and her messed up reflection that ended at the edges of the pool while the Taj Mahal’s reflection got compressed to fit in it. The result — unstoppable trolls.
Travel blogger Kanika Sood points out, “As a travel blogger the first thing to keep in mind is the authenticity of your content. Secondly, always use your own image, no matter what. You simply can’t pick up a stock image from someone or somewhere and edit your own self inside that picture. That’s ethically wrong.”
Prachi Garg and Himadri Garg of Ghoomophirosisters, who started travel blogging when there were only a few travel bloggers, say, “Though everyone wants to portray their journeys in the best way possible in this content-driven digital world, you will find the depth and experience missing in some travel bloggers. We still follow the veterans, as they are digital nomads in the true sense. We normally do not edit our pictures apart from adding our watermark and cleaning them a bit. The prime reason behind this is to maintain the originality of the place. We understand that many people follow us for our musings and get eager to see the places through our experiences. Giving them a fake picture via too much picture editing is an injustice.”
However, in an era where everyone out there uses Instagram filters to enhance photographs, it’s not fair to point out anyone in particular, opines Purushu Arie, a fashion blogger. He says, “Every blogger uses Photoshop. The precedent was set long ago and bloggers are just mirroring an already existing custom (which they didn’t even create.) Photoshop is a wonderful tool to enhance lighting, textures and other aspects that make a wonderful photograph. But I think the use of Photoshop shouldn’t be projected as the main problem here. Photoshop, like everything else in the world, can be put to both good and bad use.”