The Three Levitating Government Officials

(Southern Metropolis Daily)  June 26, 2011.

Original website page with photos

On the evening of June 26, an Internet user made a post titled <Too fake: the propaganda photo for our county> at the Tianya Forum.  "I had nothing to do today so I visited the website for our county government.  The headline story was about the upgrade for the road to the countryside.  I looked at the photo and I almost coughed out half a liter of blood!  Even a rank amateur like myself can tell that this was a PhotoShop job, and they had the nerve to put this on the home page!"  The post included a screen capture of a photo, in which three men were "floating" over a road.  There were clear indications that this was a composite job.  According to the caption: "County mayor Li Ningyi and vice-mayor Tang Xiaobing are inspecting the newly constructed country road at Lihong Town."  This post drew plenty of readers, and the Huili County Government website was even down for a while because of the heavy traffic volume.

On the afternoon of June 27, our reader interviewed the Huili County Government publicity department director Zhang Yongzhi.  According to Zhang, several county leaders went out to inspect the road.  An accompanying worker took some photos for the record.  But when it came to posting onto the website, the worker decided that "the background of the original photo did not look very good" so a decision was made to crop the leaders onto a different background.  The Huili County Government has removed all relevant information and reprimanded the worker who handled the photo.  The Huili County Government issued an apology at the Tianya Forum and the Weibo. 

Here are the two original photos of the three leaders.

(MOP)  Meanwhile Chinese Internet users are having a field day with their own PhotoShop jobs.

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