Regulate Photoshop?

January 5, 2010 at 1:23 am / by

There is a crisis brewing that we can no longer afford to ignore. It seems that a day doesn’t go by with some Photoshop hatchet job causing a stir. Perhaps the most infamous is the image Ralph Lauren concocted. If you haven’t seen it, just Google, “Ralph Lauren Photoshop”. It’s gotten so bad that the French want to legislate advertising images. Who can blame them, although I think they are probably legislating the wrong thing. What needs to be legislated is Photoshop itself. Perhaps the FDA should step in. At the very least, one should need a Photoshop operator’s license for commercial use. Advertising images have the ability to reach countless impressionable minds (if the advertiser is lucky, that is). Is this not a public health issue?

The rampant abuse of Photoshop is undermining the credibility of advertising. Stop and think about that: eroding the credibility of advertising. This may sound funny (and it is), but what if the public where to truly stop believing? What if they stopped suspending belief and no longer could be enticed into buying that face-cream-serum-rejuvenator-elixir at $50 a half ounce? Now we have an attack on the very bedrock of capitalism.

The public has an increasing visual sophistication. At the same time, the ability to make fantasy so visually realistic and compelling raises the level of responsibility for marketers and digital artists. Companies that don’t adhere to a high standard will be rooted out and flailed in the digital realm.


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