Inaccurate photo captions can have huge consequences

To the Editor:

I must compliment the Boiling Point team on an excellent recent edition.  The articles were well written and germain to the school community.  Well done!

I would like to point out an inaccuracy.

The first one is the staged picture of me in the phone closet.  The caption reads: “BACKSTAGE:  Mr. Frankel programs the announcement system.”  The photograph has nothing to do with the PA system as it is taken in the telephone closet.  The computer for the bells is located in Eli Shiff’s office.  The caption could have read:  “Mr. Frankel working on school technology.” – or something like that.  I would suggest that original caption is a misrepresentation.

Here is an extreme example of a simular mis-captioning of picture – but I believe that it makes a good “mushal.”  The NYT ran a picture of a young man with blood streaming down his face and an Israeli “soldier” in the background with his club raised as if about to strike.  The caption read something like Palestinian youth being attacked by Israeli soldier on Temple Mound.  Of course the picture was not this at all, but rather an Israeli police officer chasing off a band of Palestinian youth who was beating a Jewish – American student.  It was not even on Temple Mound!  The youth in the picture was the Jewish – American student with the blood dripping down his head from the beating.

Originally, I was not going to mention this, but after much consideration I thought that this would be a good “teachable moment” to expound on the importance of journalistic accuracy – even for issues as small as this.


Yossie Frankel

Academic Technology Director/Physics Teacher

Shalhevet School

323.930.9333 x218