The Daily Evergreen

Photoshop not to blame for society

Chelsea Keyes | Evergreen columnist

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You don’t think that you will turn into someone else like in the Snickers “You’re not you when you’re hungry” commercials, so why blame Photoshop as a negative effect on your image?

Image manipulation in programs like Photoshop have fallen victim to the notion that the advertised product contributes to body image expectations, eating disorders and other emotional problems. However it is nothing more than a program that helps attracts the viewer’s eye to what is being advertised.

Typically people will argue that it is okay to make ‘minor’ changes to a photo such as removing blemishes, tattoos or even enhancing the lighting. In doing so, people will still feel conscious about their appearance whether it is because of acne or the color of your skin.  

Photoshop is made for editing. Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines Photoshop as software that alters a digital image “especially in a way that distorts reality.”

There is no definition of the physical characteristics that make someone attractive or what is seen as beauty. It is simply a system of ideologies that have evolved over time.

Photoshop is not to blame for these ideologies which make us believe that the women clearly edited on the covers of magazines and in the media are considered to have the perfect image.

With or without editing software, those self-esteem issues will still exist. It is a product of our society, not a computer program.

If the models consent to the image or have no problem with their photos being altered then there should be no reason for anyone else to complain about it.

For example, Beyoncé is known to take pride in her voluptuous body. She was featured in a photo shoot for H&M’s 2013 summer collection. The retail clothing store had altered her curves in the pictures to reflect a smaller sized figure, according to an article on the Huffington Post.

After a few discussions to meet the needs of both Beyoncé and the company, H&M decided to advertise the summer swimsuit collection with the original pictures that were taken.

Another solution to the bizarre controversy is to place warning labels on magazines to inform viewers that the photos have been edited.

According to ABC News a number of researchers and government regulators are in favor of these warning labels. So far, the most notable calls for the labels have come from legislators in France, Britain and Norway.

This ensures the satisfaction of not only consumers but companies who strive to sell and advertise merchandise or concepts.

With the rise of apps like Instagram, it has become easier to manipulate your figure and enhance photographs in positive ways.

Does this mean we are to blame as well for the ridiculous accusations Photoshop has come to face?

There is no crime against running a business geared towards adjusting a product to achieve the job of making a consumer happy.

There is nothing wrong with the use of the Photoshop software. With the understanding of how the media and society works then everyone will be satisfied.

-Chelsea Keyes is a sophomore communication major from Tacoma. She can be contacted at 335-2290 or by [email protected] The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the staff of The Daily Evergreen or those of Student Publications.

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Photoshop not to blame for society