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Did MyPaper use doctored photo to slime cyclists?

Posted on 07 May 2013

Evidence seems pretty compelling.

A little storm is breaking out in the cycling community in Singapore.

Eagle-eyed members of the cycling community Facebook page, SG Cyclists, are saying that local morning rag, MyPaper, has published a doctored image featuring cyclists on Changi Coast Road to portray cyclists as riding dangerously.

The article was published on May 6, 2013 yesterday:

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

Thank god for the internet, when viewed online, the article can be zoomed in to show a high definition of the image. This means that if you only saw the image in print on paper, you wouldn’t have seen it as clearly.

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

So what is the first dead giveaway that the picture might have had some work done?

The members from SG Cyclists Facebook page are aghast to see that there is a group of three cyclists in the middle of the road, out of nowhere — because no cyclist would ever do that.

And then there’s that daredevil cyclist on the left doing some stunt right behind the van.

And if the improbability of three cyclists in the middle of the road is not a dead giveaway that the picture might have been doctored, you will notice that up to five of the cyclists have been “plastered” on the scene.

Simply because there is some obvious discrepancy with the overall feel of the other real cyclists in the image when you use Photoshop to zoom in on all of them.

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

Right click and open the image above in another tab. You will note that the sports bra cyclist and the cyclist on the far right are real. They are facing and riding towards the camera — in the same angle as the lorry behind them in the distance.

The fake cyclists with arrows on their heads are facing the “wrong” direction.

Now check out the most epic Photoshop FAIL.

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

(Right click and open the pic in another window. Image will appear bigger.)

Right click and open the image above in another tab.

Eh what the hell happened to the curb?! And how come the front wheel got no shadow?!

So, let’s just give credit where it is due: The original photo is taken by someone called Mohd Ishak/ The New Paper.

In the spirit of creativity, some members have created their own convincing photos of local cyclists doing crazy shit.


What is the conlclusion? Read this.

This post was written by:

- who has written 2685 posts on New Nation.

Wang Pei can be considered a new citizen of Singapore. She has been here all her life, just that her environment's changed beyond recognition.

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  • Shahnawaz

    Doctored photo or not, cyclists should get off our roads, or at the very least stop pinning blame for the deaths of cyclists on other motorists. We’ve got too many vehicles on our roads for cycling to be a safe option.

    • Dogster


    • huaiwei

      By that definition, we should get more cars off the roads for causing too many accidents not just to cyclists, but also to pedestrians, other motorists, and also to themselves. Paying road tax does not earn you the right to endanger the lives of others.

      • Shahnawaz

        Of course not, I’m only saying that if you decide to ride a bicycle on the crowded roads of Singapore, you have to accept that you are placing your life at a certain level of risk.

        That level of risk is, in my opinion, higher than that faced by pedestrians, other motorists, or drivers themselves.

        Until and unless we get a dedicated bike lane, I just think it’s not very smart to cycle and not expect some level of danger, which as we have seen, can be fatal. And then just because you’re the “smaller” guy, you are therefore absolved of all blame.

    • Audi Khalid

      @twitter-203289574:disqus you didn’t really think through your comment, did you?

      • Shahnawaz

        I did actually. In fact, I’m a motorcyclist, and I’m pretty sure nobody beats us when it comes to the body count.

        Every time I ride, I tell myself that it could be my last. And while it may come as a result of another driver’s negligence, it could also be entirely my fault.

        I just don’t go out and blame inconsiderate drivers every time a motorcyclist gets into an accident. Because every situation is different.

        And as hard as it may be to swallow, to a certain extent, the motorcyclist involved has to realize he is also to blame. He had a choice between riding or taking the bus/train.

    • Jamie Bobini

      Uhm… Yeah. Well then can we plug up car exhausts so you don’t pollute the air we pedestrians breathe? So silly.

      • Shahnawaz

        Well I’m sure as a society we can look to electric vehicles or hybrids. Don’t get what you’re trying to say though.

        • Jamie Bobini

          Sorry I wasn’t clear. I was merely making a stupid statement in response to your asking cyclists to get off roads. But reading your further response, I gather it was probably just not worded ideally. Cheers!

    • Cyclist.Motorist.Pedestrian

      You might as well say pedestrians stay off crossing the roads, go look for overhead bridges. Errant cyclists & motorists & pedestrians are the spotlight.

    • pkism

      enjoy your traffic jam 😉

  • Red Pheonix

    Ahem…Cyclists have every right to be on the road. It’s been established long ago, in the Road Traffic Act. Public roads are intended to be used by ALL road users, including CYCLIST and pedestrians. They are built and maintained using public funds collected from general taxes, including those who do not use motorised vehicles..Guess what ?? WE Cyclist PAY INCOME TAX & GST too, HENCE WE HAVE THE RIGHT !! There’s are bad motorist & bad cyclist. At the end of the day, mutual respect and understanding are needed on BOTH sides

    • AAA

      You did not pay road tax so how can you cycle on the road???

  • marv

    yes, cyclists have the right to be on the roads. but given that singapore roads are small and narrow, and with the amount of vehicles, it’s only logical that cyclists should try to stay clear of the road for their own safety.

    if they don’t, which is fine with me, they should not be going on a witch hunt when one of their own meets with an accident on the roads.

    accidents happen. it might be the driver’s fault, and it might be the cyclist’s fault. but it sickens me that whenever an accident happens, the blame is automatically on the driver and the whole cycling community cries foul. no one forced the cyclist onto the roads in the first place.

    fact is the cyclists took the risk when they chose to ride on the roads, so they must be prepared for the dangers that come with it. it’s like going to war with a butter knife, if you get what i mean.

    also, which sane driver wishes to be involved in a road accident?

    • zee

      exactly, no driver would ever wish to be involved in any road accident. cars and repair costs are so costly in singapore.
      I was recently involved in an accident all because a cyclist decided to cross the busy road at the pedestrian crossing on RED MAN. Since its GREEN light for the cars, we happily drove, thank God at slows speeds else the cyclist might not be alive and kicking today. Upon impact, the cyclist remained on his bike seat and did not sustain a single scratch. However, my car sustained a broken wing mirror, and deep scratches on both driver-side doors. Repair costs were about 4k. Also, thankfully my emergency brake did not cause a multi-vehicle collision behind me.
      I was informed that I could not claim against him, since singapore does not have ‘insurance for bikers’, unlike many other countries around the world.
      Recalling further, I remember the cyclist was calm, composed and smiling right after the accident. (I would have been shocked that I was that close to death) He stared at the damage on my car, and smirked at me. I guess he must have had similar experiences, hence he knew he was not liable as a ‘vulnerable road user’.
      I guess rules and regulations have to be better implemented. Including a requirement for insurance for cyclists plying roads alongside cars and motorcycles.
      I myself used to ride bicycles for recreation, until my dad threw all my bikes away once he knew I was riding on public pavements and roads. I used to blame him for being so strict and only allowing me to ride within my garden (which honestly still sounds a little retarded). I guess I now better understand not to be a nuisance to car and motorbike drivers (who pay hefty road taxes and COEs). Most importantly, my life is not at stake.

  • yien leow

    Some cyclists have shadows while others dont

    • AAA

      LOL you know what you are talking or not? If not just shut up la dont act smart.

      • yien leow

        you know what you are talking or not what act smart

  • driver and cyclist

    To non-cyclists. Please know that there are different kinds of bikes designed to be ridden on different surfaces and speeds. Road bikes and Triathlon bikes are designed to be ridden on smooth, flat surfaces i.e. ROAD. and not bumpy, dangerous pedestrian sidewalks. Like many developed countries, there should be mutual respect for all users and the government / media should not take sides but strive to improve the situation.

  • roadie

    Those cyclist always cycle in the middle of the road nothing new here.

  • Nick

    This paper and Singaporeans in general ought to be ashamed. Doctoring front page news for political purposes? That’s a new low even for Singapore. And it’s not just to make the picture more visually appealing – it changes the entire meaning of it. Forget the cycling issue, what other images and messages do the press here ‘doctor’ to get you to think the way they want you to? In any other country there’d be public outcry and the integrity of the paper would be questioned – more than likely they’d have to issue a very public apology, fire some people, and promise it would never happen again. But then this is Singapore… we’ll just keep our heads down.

  • JamesP

    This just popped up…. hmmmm

  • Chee Viwen
  • Chris Yuen

    Saw a reply from TNP’s photo desk. Here:

  • John Lam

    Some more from TNP photographers’ blog in higher res there. Think you guys got it wrong big time!

  • Fred

    So which is the LOCAL RAG now I wonder? Nvm… come New Nation, I clap for you.

  • Pingback: TNP bows to public scrutiny, makes rare clarification | New Nation

  • Gannic
  • Pingback: » When watchdogs bark up the wrong tree, let's not airbrush the error

  • dweeb
  • Pingback: Sorry, Mohd Ishak, my bad | New Nation

  • Pingback: Dangerous re-cycling of a photograph - The Middle Ground