Editors' BlogAugust 22, 2007

Questions about Photos

We got two interesting questions...questions is putting it nicely...about two of our photos in the September issue of Golf Digest. The first came from Bob Giolitto of Norwalk, Connecticut, who was appalled that we would run the photo we did of Michelle Wie that accompanied Jaime Diaz's story, Wondering about Wie.

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Why would you lead off an article on a 17 year old girl with a picture like the one of Michelle Wie in your September issue? Whether or not Michelle, her parents, or her agent approved the picture is irrelevant. It is irresponsible and reprehensible that a legitimate magazine would resort to what amounts to "sexploitation" of a teenager. Are magazine sales so important to you that you need to practice this type of tabloid journalism? Please do the right thing: Don't defend, just apologize.

Bob, I won't defend or apologize. I'll ask a question: Did you get the fact that this was a photo illustration of Michelle as Wonder Woman, in that superhero costume? And that this Wonder Woman had a bandage on her arm? I'm sorry if you were offended at the "sexiness" of the outfit, but I thought the idea was a clever way to communcate that the Super Woman too many of us had predicted she'd be was a wounded superhero at this point. For the record, Michelle Wie did not pose or cooperate with this illustration.

The second question comes from eagle-eyed Ken Staroscik of Firestone, Colorado, about the photo accompanying Tiger Woods' tip in our Lesson Tee section:

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Just finished reading the Tiger Woods article (Lesson Tee--Sept. 2007) which boldly proclaimed BE HONEST: WHERE DOES YOUR GAME NEED HELP? My question is this: Is Golf Digest being honest? The sub-title of the article states--narrow your focus and seek out a trained eye. Here we see a photograph of Tiger "practicing by moonlight, under Hank Haney's eye." Well my trained eye tells me that the moon is in its Last (3rd) Quarter Phase. Astronomically speaking, the Last Quarter moon rises approximately at midnight--Solar Time. By the position of the moon in the photograph I would think the photograph (if real) was taken sometime between 5 and 6AM--probably nearer to 5. I know that Tiger practices at all hours of the day.......but at this time? No wonder that Hank Haney and Steve Williams seem so excited!!

Ken, you caught us. But not Tiger. He really does practice that early. Given that he often plays a practice round at seven, he might well be on the range at six and was in this case. But that moon, the moon on the morning the shot was taken, was lost when we cropped this photo for Lesson Tee. So, after cropping the picture, we re-inserted the image of the moon.

Photo Editor Matt Ginella explains that while we would never alter a news photograph in this way, we give ourselves the liberty of "cleaning up" instruction and feature photos to make a point like this.

The bottom line is, you're right. We moved the moon.

--Bob Carney

(Photo illustration of Wie: Michael Elins)

(Photo of Tiger: Dom Furore)

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