Monday, July 19, 2010

Is Tom Emmer on a Slimfast Diet?

The latest kerfuffle in our high minded governors race here in Minnesota involves the possibility that an Emmer photo may have been manipulated for an advertising video/tv piece.

The latest comes from the Strib:

Did a pro-Tom Emmer group skinny down the Republican candidate for governor's face in their new television ad?

As espied by MinnPost media reporter it sure looks like they did. The reporter, David Brauer called the apparent MN Forward face shaping, "a subtle and somewhat silly fib, but trust me, every pixel of these ads is fawned over, so it's no accident."

But it turns out, it is an accident or rather a problem of the medium on which the ad is viewed, according to MN Forward director Brian McClung.

What's going on, McClung said, is that the photo, pulled from Emmer's legislative Web site, looks skinnier on a YouTube screen grab than it does on television. On television, Emmer's face should look as wide as it does on the photo.

McClung said the group didn't ask the ad production firm to change the photo and the ad production firm "didn't squeeze or change the photo in any way."


Well being an empiricist, I did the following test. Take the photo of note and insert it into a short video in Windows Movie Maker. Upload it to YouTube and play the video. Screen capture. Then run the Emmer campaign video on YouTube. Screen capture.

The results can be seen above. It certainly looks to me like some sort of manipulation of the Emmer photo must have been done to get this kind of result.

Am I right or does someone want to set me straight? Mr. McClung?

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