On Wednesday, April 24, 2013, the eight-storey Rana Plaza factory building in Savar 15 miles (24 Km) to the northwest of Dhaka city, the capital of Bangladesh, collapsed with hundreds of garment workers employed in factories that supplied high-street shops in the west, trapped inside.
Before the fatal accident, workers had repeatedly complained that the building was cracking open, but the management simply ignored their complaints. Sol Rana, the owner of the building was arrested.
On Friday morning (May 10), officials said about 2,500 people were injured in the accident and 2,437 people were rescued. A total of 1,021 bodies have been recovered
from the debris and almost 650 identified so far and handed over to the families of the deceased. Many people are still missing.
A few hours after officials had announced the death toll as 1021, the recovery teams who had long given up any hope of finding any more survivors were shocked to hear at 15:15 local time (10:15 GMT), the voice of a woman calling for help from the debris of the second floor of the Rana Plaza. Immediately rescue workers were ordered to stop clearing the site.
The Bangladesh army has confirmed the news, naming the rescued woman as Reshma. The woman was taken to hospital and did not seem to have any significant injuries.
The above image of a giant’s skeleton is in fact a digital collage of three different photos created by a Canadian illustrator using the alias IronKite. It was placed third in a 2002 competition titled “Archaeological Anomalies 2,” run by Worth1000, a website that hosts contests for digital artists. The website asked contestants to create a hoax archaeological discovery.
Blogs, emails, and even a newspaper have used the above “photograph” to give credence and to substantiate their so-called reports that the National Geographic Society had discovered an ancient race of human giants in India.
Recently, I came across the above image of a news item included in a YouTube video titled “RACE OF GIANTS found in India” uploaded by YTABUSESusers on December 15, 2008. This news, submitted by G. Subramaniam of Chennai, in a less known Indian newspaper called “Hindu Voice” looked dubious. It does not carry the date of publication.
In the article titled “Skeleton of Giant” Is Internet Photo Hoax” in National Geographic News, James Owen wrote: “An often cited March 2007 article in India’s Hindu Voice monthly, for example, claimed that a National Geographic Society team, in collaboration with the Indian Army, had dug up a giant human skeleton in India.”
“Recent exploration activity in the northern region of India uncovered a skeletal remains of a human of phenomenal size.” The story went on to say “The discovery was made by National Geographic Team (India Division) with support from the Indian Army since the area comes under jurisdiction of the Army.”
However, the monthly, “Hindu Voice,” based in Mumbai (Bombay), published a retraction after readers alerted its editor P. Deivamuthu to the hoax. The editor said: “We are against spreading lies and canards,” and he added “Moreover, our readers are a highly intellectual class and will not brook any nonsense.”
On December 14, 2007, James Owen for National Geographic News wrote: “The National Geographic Society has not discovered ancient giant humans, despite rampant reports and pictures.”
IronKite used the above photo taken in 2000 of a mastodon-excavation in Hyde Park, New York as the basis for his photo-manipulation.
In December 2007, he told National Geographic News that he digitally superimposed a human skeleton over the mastodon-dig photo. Later on, he added a man holding a shovel and re-colored his clothing to match that of the man in the above, authentic picture. The goal was to make the shoveler appear to be part of the excavation team. “To create the photo collage, I kept most of the wood frame from the dig site and replaced most of the muddy dirt with ground from the skeleton picture, using a fuzzy ‘brush’ to fade the two so no hard lines would be visible,” IronKite said.
Though the above authentic photograph of the New York State mastodon excavation was not used to create the completed ‘giant’ skeleton image, it served as the foundation for the digital artwork.
Since 2004, this digitally manipulated artwork inspired unfounded reports of archaeologists unearthing a skeleton of an ancient human giant in India. IronKite, the Canadian digital artist, had nothing to do with the subsequent hoax.
Avi Muchnick who runs Worth1000, the web site that sponsored the photo-manipulation contests that inspired this fake photo said: “We have thousands of people who regularly create images like these in image-editing tools like Phoenix and Photoshop. So, it’s no surprise to us when some of these images get passed around the web as authentic depictions of actual events.”
James Owen wrote: “Variations of the giant photo hoax include alleged discovery of a 60- to 80-foot long (18- to 24-meter) human skeleton in Saudi Arabia. In one popular take, which likewise first surfaced in 2004, an oil-exploration team is said to have made the find. Here the skeleton is held up as evidence of giants mentioned in Islamic, rather than Hindu, scriptures.”
Philip Scott Johnson used Abrosoft Fantamorph to create this enthralling video. He uploaded the video on to YouTube on April 22, 2007 under the pseudonym eggman913. It was nominated for 2007 YouTube Awards in the “Creative” category.
The background music being played is “Bach’s Sarabande from Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007” performed by the French Americancellist, virtuoso, and orchestral composer Yo-Yo Ma.
I hope you like this video as much as I do.
If you are a curious cat like me, then visit Ms. Boni’s site to find the complete list of artists and paintings used in this video by Philip Scott Johnson.