December 7, 2010

Visual Demonization: Osama bin Assange?

This Interpol screen shot popping up on various media sites today  is a perfect reflection of the cheap and hysterical international demonization of Julian Assange.

It would have been noteworthy just to callout the framing of this online equivalent of a post office wanted poster, framing Assange as international “public enemy number #1.”  Where the piling-on splashes into the gutter, though, and should bestow shame on any online photo editor who would consider running such an image,  involves the composition of the photo as elicited by the camera angle.

The slander here is not complicated at all.  Simply, by juxtaposing Assange’s “wanted” photo with Interpol’s standard site links, the viewer is prompted to draw associations between Assange and “Drugs,” Assange and Pharmaceutical crime,” Assange and Financial and high-tech crime” and Assange and “Intellectual property.”

At least WAPO gets him for “Intellectual Property.”

The Guardian only hits him for the drugs and (the) criminal organization.

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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