We have all heard those stories, where someone has used PhotoShop to make themselves look younger, more handsome or thinner – right?
Well, what I am about to share with you here is what I call photo-shock!
It’s the shock someone experiences when they meet someone for the first time, who they have previously only seen very heavily PhotoShopped pictures of.
A twitter connection
I spoke with a friend last week, who told me about her shock at meeting a man for the first time; whom she had only previously communicated with via twitter.
They agreed to meet in person; as this guy is a designer and my friend had some design work, which he wanted the chance to quote for. So, they decided it was best to meet in a public place and chose Starbucks. My friend arrived a little early, grabbed a coffee and waited.
Noticing her twitter friend was about 20 minutes late, she decided to give him a quick call, just to make sure he was OK. The weather was extremely bad and she was concerned he may have had an accident.
Imagine her surprise, when he answered the phone and told her he was already there; sitting upstairs enjoying a coffee! Now, my friend had sat downstairs, close to the door and she watched each person come in. She told me:
“At this point Jim, I just assumed he must have arrived before I did; because I watched the door like a hawk, so that I could welcome him and ‘break the ice’.”
Even after being told where he was sitting, she STILL couldn’t spot him – until he called over to her! Suddenly she figured out what had happened!
The picture used by her twitter friend had been so heavily PhotoShopped that it was basically a different person! As a professional designer and an expert with PhotoShop, he was able to create an amazing set of pictures of himself for his website and twitter profile; which look great – but are nothing whatsoever like he really looks. She was genuinely shocked!
Most noticeably, the man she met seemed to be around her age (she’s 52), yet the pictures he uses online look to be closer to someone in their late twenties. He had doctored the images to change his age by around 25 years. As she told me;
it’s one thing to pick pictures of yourself that show you in your best light or to remove the odd zit / spot; but this guy looked like the father of the guy I was expecting to meet. It instantly destroyed any trust I previously had in him.
Although this might sound like a funny story, there’s an important issue here.
What about trust?
Before someone will do business with us, they have to trust us. They need to believe we will deliver on the service we promise or that the product we supply really will do whatever we claim it will. If someone starts off a business relationship, behind a heavily doctored picture of them self, is it REALLY going to impress a prospective client when they learn it’s a fake?
Over to you!
If you met someone for the first time and saw that they had been using heavily doctored images of themselves online – would it create a ‘trust issue’ for you?
Do you believe, as my friend does, that this is a form of dishonesty or is it OK to use software to make yourself look as good as possible? Is there a limit, beyond which it’s unacceptable, if so, where’s that limit in your opinion?
Let us know what you think!