People often make the mistake of thinking history is just old news, water under the bridge – before something comes along to blow that concept out of the water. And it’s a danger Vice found out the hard way last week, after it came under fire for publishing photos showing genocide victims edited to look like they were smiling.


The article in question, which Vice has since removed from its website, purported to feature colourised and enhanced photos of people who were imprisoned under the brutal Khmer Rouge regime that devastated Cambodia in the 1970s. The problem? It failed to make clear that the imagery’s creator, Irish artist Matt Loughrey, had also altered some of the subjects’ expressions to show them smiling.


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