This past weekend Murdoch’s Sunday Times ran a story on an ill-fated Nigerian hostage rescue mission, deciding to illustrate the grave ordeal with a picture of Call of Duty’s John “Soap” MacTavish.
The Sunday Times article detailed how two people, a Briton and an Italian, taken hostage in May of last year died during the efforts to rescue them. This sad and very serious story was accompanied with a questionable videogame still of the Soap character, complete with an even more baffling black bar obscuring the fictional characters eyes.
Use of video game imagery to assist in the portrayal of real world events, whether purposeful or not, seems a little inane for a story of this nature.
However, The Sunday Times blunder is not the first time a media outlet has made use of video game imagery in this way. Broadcaster ITV used in-game footage of ARMA 2 in a 2011 IRA documentary, resulting in the channel being slammed by regulator Ofcom for having breached the audience’s trust.