DPWH under fire for Facebook 'photoshopping'

Posted at 09/29/11 7:24 PM

The allegedly "photoshopped" image uploaded on the DPWH Central Office's Facebook page.

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) caught the ire of social media and blogs Thursday for allegedly poorly fabricating a photo uploaded on its Facebook page.

The image, allegedly altered through popular editing program Photoshop, showed DPWH Undersecretary Romeo Momo with Metro Manila Regional Director Reynaldo Tagudando and South Manila District Engineer Mikunug Macud talking, with the damaged Manila Bay seawall in the background.

The 3 officials seem to be floating on air in the fabricated photo.

Pierre Albert San Diego, a civil engineer, pointed out the discrepancies in his blog, Controlled Chaos.

"I re-checked the image and concluded that DPWH fabricated this picture. Why they had to edit it and not just simply compose a photo with all three guys, I do not know," he said. "Although my evil mind tells me that the DPWH wants a pogi photo showing their bosses in deep thought while assessing the disaster site, and they didn’t have the opportunity to pose because those guys were probably there for 15 minutes max – so they just lasso tooled the hell out of that pic."

"Some say this is a very minor issue, but I see this is as a nice sample of DPWH’s lack of integrity. If they can fabricate simple things like this, just imagine what these guys can do to progress billings and acceptance of projects," San Diego added. "Also, while relatively mild, isn’t this a classic example of 'Utak Wangwang?' While unethical and unnecessary, they thought they could get away with fabricating photos so they tried to."

The DPWH Central Office's Facebook administrators have deleted the fabricated photo and uploaded new images, presumably unaltered.

However, the department continued to receive flak on the social media site because of the Photoshop faux pas.

"Nakakahiya kayo! Nagphophotoshop pa ng litrato na peke," said Arthur Espiritu.

"Bakit ba hinahayaan nyo yung ganito dapat may managot sa picture na iyon panloloko yun! Pati ba naman report dadayain pa. Di tama iyan. Paano pa tayo pagkakatiwalaan ng taong bayan kung yung picture nga na simpleng bagay dinadaya," said Allan Olimpo Almarines.

"Hahahaha akala nyo di kami marunong ng Photoshop," said YumiZuki Oshiro.

The DPWH Central Office has apologized over the altered photo.

"We apologize for the photo release... it was not cleared yet before the staff posted it. It was already replaced," said a page administrator post signed by DPWH public information department chief Beth Pilorin.