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A Former White House Photographer Made Some REALLY Good Points About That Controversial Kate Middleton Photo

"So, for the sake of consistency, let’s call fake photos what they are: 'fake' or 'altered' and stop using the word 'Photoshopped.'"

Pete Souza is a legendary photographer known for his work in the Obama White House.

President Obama in a suit smiling with hand on chin, with Pete behind him with camera, in the Oval Office

He was the chief White House photographer during President Barack Obama's time there, and he's responsible for SO many well-known pictures of the former president.

Obama smiling near a camera held by Pete and surrounded by people

He took this head butt pic:

Barack and Michelle Obama touch foreheads, surrounded by aides, in a backstage elevator's casual setting

He did the family's Easter portraits:

Family portrait of the Obamas with their two dogs, posing outdoors with a flowering tree in the background

And he's responsible for this iconic McKayla Maroney pic:

Mckayla Maroney and Barack Obama pose with "not impressed" expressions in the White House

And now Souza is going viral for his thoughts on the Kate Middleton photo debacle.

#KateMiddleton photoshop mistakes. pic.twitter.com/FclHnHZbsE

— Shao Trommashere (@MedicTrommasher) March 10, 2024
@princessandprinceofwales / instagram.com / Via Twitter: @MedicTrommasher

He posted this picture he took of Prince William and Prince George with the president:

Prince William kneels beside President Obama who is chatting with Prince George in a white robe, in an elegant room

In the caption, he really spilled:

Text from a social media post by Pete Souza discussing a digitally altered photograph of Prince George meeting President Obama, explaining the alterations and defending the original photo's authenticity

For those who can't read that little text, this is what it says:

"I made this photograph of Prince George meeting President Obama in 2016. The digital file was 'processed' with Photoshop, a software program made by Adobe that virtually every professional photographer uses. Yet my photograph was certainly not 'altered' or 'changed' in content.⁣"

Prince William, President Obama, and Prince George in a room; George wears a white robe; the adults are smiling down at him

"I thought of this distinction after the photograph released earlier this week of Princess Catherine and her children was found to be 'altered.' Some stories referred to it as being 'photoshopped.' And that made me cringe.⁣"

I'm just posting this zoom in of Princess Charlotte's vanishing sleeve as I find it hilarious that they published this. pic.twitter.com/Lng3vwBz1B

— Antonia Burt (@fei_yen_kn) March 10, 2024
@princessandprinceofwales / instagram.com / Via Twitter: @fei_yen_kn

"Every publication like the New York Times, and every news organization like the Associated Press, have strict policies on using Photoshop to process images. Basically, the accepted practices allow a news photograph to be tweaked by adjusting the color balance; the density (make the raw file lighter or darker); and shadows and highlights."⁣

"What’s not acceptable is to remove, add, or change elements in the photograph. That would be altering the content. ⁣For example, if there’s a telephone pole sticking out of a person’s head, you wouldn’t be allowed to remove it. ⁣Or if someone mashes multiple family pictures together into one, that wouldn’t be acceptable. (Why, though, did it take AP nearly two hours to make this determination with the photo earlier this week?)."

Assorted newspapers featuring articles about a public figure's surgical procedure

"Let’s keep this in mind given the current political climate where a certain presidential candidate and his rabid supporters dismiss stories he or they don’t like as 'fake news.' He has also said multiple times that published photographs of himself he didn’t like were 'Photoshopped'."

Kate walking with two of her children, George and Charlotte, among a crowd, all dressed in winter coats

"The photographs in question undoubtedly were processed through Photoshop, but not at all 'altered.' (He did get away with posting a picture of himself on Facebook during his Presidency that made his fingers longer, hands bigger, and body 50 lbs lighter.)"

Donald Trump saluting behind a fence with a crowd behind him

"So, for the sake of consistency, let’s call fake photos what they are: 'fake' or 'altered' and stop using the word 'Photoshopped.'"

Pete even doubled down in the comments, saying, "Fake photos are fake. It's idiotic if we don't call them out."

Pete Souza has time for derangers this week! Love to see it. 👌🏾 pic.twitter.com/Oqc2gq2i0y

— Alexandra (@alexandrachasy) March 14, 2024
Twitter: @alexandrachasy

As this person says, "Pete Souza is one of the most ethical photographers in the business. Listen to him."

Pete Souza is one of the most ethical photographers in the business. Listen to him. https://t.co/nIgVNnSzuy

— Diamond (@diamondfromcoal) March 14, 2024
Getty Images / Pete Souza / Via Twitter: @diamondfromcoal