'We could be more trusted'

Sergey Ponomarev: “Well, I see the influence of social media and then before when we had kind of proper media we had a chain through, a chain of filters like that the news had to pass through like it goes through the reporter, the reporter reports that to the editor, the editor probably approves that or disapproves and then he double checks, he checks the facts and he finds other sources and then it goes through the chief editor. Right now, there are none of those filters, so any fake could access public directly and the public ordinary people themselves. They are not users used to check facts and they could believe anything that, that they were told. And so, at some point with the photography, we could, we could be more trusted because we operate with the visual document, documents, though sometimes it's also faked and used, the old archive photographs from other places. I haven't seen that with my images, but I saw that with images of other photojournalists who worked in Syria, but yeah that's, that's happening. I have no no solution to that, just, just to be cautious about anything striking that you were told that might be fake. I don't have time to defend my work but yeah, that's the new circumstances that we are fighting with. That we probably can shoot the most striking image and we believe that it could change the world but then it comes with a fake caption and everything. All your efforts are ruined, and you cannot, you cannot fight it back. Yeah, that's that's, that's sad.”

Pulitzer-prize winning photographer Sergey Ponomarev has covered subjects ranging from daily life in his homeland of Russia to conflicts including the Libyan civil war and combat in Afghanistan.

When he travelled to Syria in 2013-2014, he was able to record the lives of people living in Government-controlled areas of the country and tell stories that other photographers found impossible to access. 

As an award-winning photographer, Sergey is used to seeing his work appear in publications like the New York Times, but in a world where social media is becoming increasingly influential, he says it is important to be aware where your news is coming from, particularly when it comes to topics like the Syria conflict. 


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