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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Poison Pens Seven: The border Tories can see from Space

When is a satellite image from NASA not a satellite image from NASA?

When it's been doctored by the Torygraph, of course. See anything bogey in this pic?

Apart from the fact that is ISN'T one of the images released by NASA to celebrate the World Cup and is instead one of the Telegraph's 'favourites', there appears to be a strange meandering river crossing the island of Ireland.

Bizarrely, this river appears to follow exactly the political border between the Republic and the North. This is a river unknown to anyone who has ever been to Ireland. In fact, it doesn't actually exist. So how did it end up in a NASA satellite image?

I had a look at the other images, and of course no borders exist in any of them, because NASA are not a bunch of tools who photoshop borders onto satellite images.

But it seems that the Torygraph are. There you go - a border you can see from Space, but only if you're a Daily Telegraph reader.


Penrefe said...

Excellent observation!

Mark said...

I've just found your blog via Graham Linehan on Twitter (@Glinner) and have found a similar image on NASA's website to back up your point: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=3124

thatguy said...

Sorry to throw a spanner in the works of your 'Torygraph differentiating between countries in pictures of World Cup countries' conspiracy, but, um, the line is there is the original, as is one between France and Spain - http://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/4690802543/sizes/o/

Nathan said...

Have you actually looked at the NASA link? You'll find the same photgraph on their slideshow http://www.nasa.gov/externalflash/worldcup2010/index.html

Rik said...

umm... I can see loads of borders on this one:

and a few on this one:

it's quite normal for country borders to be added.

Alex said...

Actually I thought it was, it's here on the flickr page, and on closer inspection, it appears to be a black line.


Anonymous said...

Nope, can't see any borders at all on this image:


They must all be rivers.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't seem like there's much suspicious going on here. They're upfront that not all of them are from the NASA collection.
And while other photos don't show borders, a lot of them are generated from multiple sources of data. And that *is* the only International border visible in that shot.

There's plenty of real issues to criticise the Torygraph for.

The thing that I find a bit weird is that in order to represent England, they choose a photo that's more of Ireland than any other country.

-- Patrick, Dublin

Rob Stradling said...


I'm afraid the Torygraph is in the clear on this one. This full image shows that Goddard added a border to France/Spain too. Plus, if you look at the full-size image, a few weird red boxes in Ireland and Wales...?

JC Skinner said...

How is the Telegraph in the clear?
NASA didn't photoshop in any non-existent rivers.
Or are you suggesting this river does exist and can be seen from space?
I'll drive there tomorrow and check if you like, but in the 5,000 or so times I've gone between Belfast and Dublin in the past, I've yet to encounter it.