Both the Knowles and Palin campaigns used questionable photos in advertising recently.
First, the Knowles campaign sent out press releases Saturday and Sunday, drawing attention to a photo that appears in one of Palin’s campaign mailers.
The Palin mailer is critical of Knowles’ record on commercial fishing and touts Palin’s plans for the industry. One of the pictures on the flier is of two fishermen in a skiff full of cod.
Knowles supporters found a similar picture - same fisherman, same fish, same camera angle - on a stock photography Web site called Alamy.com, with the caption: “cod fishing west coast of Newfoundland”.
“Sarah Palin can’t be part of the solution if she can’t tell the difference between an Alaska fisherman and Canadians,” Knowles said in a statement from the campaign.
Palin spokesman Curtis Smith said the photo came from the campaign's advertising agency.
“If anything, it was an agency error, if it turns out that it was a photo that wasn’t (a) representation of Alaska,” he said.
Then today, the Knowles campaign ran a print ad critical of Palin, saying she snubbed business leaders and missed meetings. “Empty chair … empty promises,” reads the ad, which shows Knowles and Halcro sitting at a forum in front of a group of people.
In the photo, there’s a nametag set out for Palin, but she’s nowhere to be seen. (The picture was taken at a BP candidates’ forum Oct. 30. An organizer said Palin declined to attend the forum two weeks before.)
What’s also missing from the photo in the ad are four BP logos, which were digitally erased using Photoshop.
There was a large BP logo on a banner behind Knowles at the forum. But in the ad, the banner is blank. There were also BP logos on the three nametags.
Knowles spokeswoman Patty Ginsburg said the logos were removed because the point of the ad was not that it was a BP meeting, but that Palin wasn’t there. She said the image was symbolic.
“I think the point was it’s not about BP.”
(Incidentally, during the time I was writing this blog item, a woman called to cancel her subscription because she was upset we ran the Knowles ad, and someone handed me a fax from another woman who says her husband is a former commercial fishing permit holder and criticized the photo in the Palin mailer.)