Siding With Sarah

Pigs must be aloft and they must be playing hockey in Hell today because I find myself in agreement with Sarah Palin regarding Newsweek‘s cover photo choice.  It’s a cheap shot and one the magazine should have resisted taking.

It’d be one thing if she posed for Newsweek in this get-up, but the backstory is that magazine bought the picture from a stock agency that reps the photographer who did a photo shoot for the August, 2009 issue of Runner’s World (which seems to be asserting that it has a one-year exclusive on the photo so there may be an actual lawsuit from this).  I’m not sure I would have been smart enough, were I staffing the shoot, to have asked the photographer, “And, what’s the rights agreement for these photos between you and Runner’s World?”

And, most of the world, not being media sophisticates like your average SRC reader, will probably look at the cover and – not unreasonably – assume that Ms. Palin knew exactly what she was doing and for which publication.

Newsweek maintains that picture is entirely consistent with their regular practices.  As Editor Jon Meacham wrote:

“We chose the most interesting image available to us to illustrate the theme of the cover, which is what we always try to do. We apply the same test to photographs of any public figure, male or female: does the image convey what we are saying? That is a gender-neutral standard.”

This is the most interesting image of Sarah Palin available? I’m having trouble believing that.

– Austin

16 thoughts on “Siding With Sarah

  1. I’m not a Palin supporter by any means, so I guess my opinion on the picture doesn’t count for much. Still, since this is a blog, I’ll give it anyway. It’s not a bad shot. I don’t think it’s making that much of a statement about her, although it’s obviously intended to do so. Her bitching about it is just drawing attention to it. Any attention for her, at this point, is good attention (so long as it doesn’t draw the ire of those who actually support her). She doesn’t lose anything by making a fuss over it. If I were her, I’d probably bitch too.

    But then I would never be her.

  2. Minnesotan says:

    I agree with Austin on this one. Have to admit I haven’t read the story, but unless the focus is on her fitness habits, I’m not sure how it supports Newsweek’s assertion that the image conveys what they are saying.

  3. Joe Loveland says:

    I kind of like it when news magazines doctor photos to make a fun or satirical point about a public figure, such as when Time put Obama’s head on a rather arrogant looking FDR pose. It livens things up the stodgy news world a bit.

    But I’m with you guys, I don’t get Newsweek’s point here. Running clothes because she is “running” for President??? Or is it just an excuse to show some shapely legs? If that’s what is going on, it strikes me as sexist and a sign of desperation for a magazine needing to boost retail sales.

  4. Jon Austin says:

    An obvious mash up would have been more honest IMHO. My first take on seeing this cover yesterday was, “Wow, she’s done another really dumb thing. What was she thinking?”

    Today, when I learned the story behind the story, I was surprise/pissed off at Newsweek. Along the lines of Joe’s comment, this move – plus the thinness of each week’s magazine – suggests they probably are hurting.

    – Austin

  5. Dennis Lang says:

    Hmm…Maybe it’s the registration of the photo but her legs look a little on the chunky side to me.

      1. Dennis Lang says:

        Clearly. The image is blatantly rigged. Inadequate definition of the quads and lack of sinew in the calfs. Another obvious attempt by morally bankrupt, Ivy League educated journalists to demean the brilliant ex-governor. When will this stop!?

  6. They clearly must have used photoshop to make Keira Knightly’s chin less pointy.

    Her “I could put an eye out with my chin” face is her distinguishing characteristic, and in that photo I am having a hard time finding her face at all.

  7. Silly gal with the nice legs, bless her heart, she wants to be president. (wink) Let’s just keep her talking so we can look at her.
    Nice to see being a sexist jerk is ok, as long as you are demeaning a conservative. I wonder what would happen if they put a photo of Obama playing basketball there and the caption said “How do you solve a problem like Barack” — I bet there’s be fire in the streets.
    At some point people are going to have to demand that journalists actually report the news. I like how they belittle us bloggers as unprofessional and then engage in cheap tricks and plagiarism that are below our standards.

  8. Mike Kennedy says:

    I’m no big Palin fan — but being a guy who likes to look at gals (not in the presence of my wife), I admit I looked, but I have to agree. The media can get away with a lot of making fun of Palin but would never think to do the same with some of the Obama slip ups.

    Everyone makes them. Some are more publicized than others. Mass media is in trouble in this country and this is just one reason why. PM, you’re right. Palin is very polarizing and Obama is becoming the exact same. Funny that they are now both the faces of their respective parties.

    It’s why I have to laugh at some who level charges that Fox isn’t real journalism. Just what is real journalism these days? It’s becoming an endangered species.

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