stuck in the mittle

AP Apologizes for Alley-Ooping Romney Fart Jokes

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney poses for photographs with students of Fairfield Elementary School, Monday, Oct. 8, 2012, in Fairfield, Va.
Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

The Associated Press is extremely contrite today for allowing the entire Internet to make fun of Mitt Romney. We now know, thanks to an updated caption, that this photo from Monday has nothing to do with Romney’s rear end, but shows “A student, right, [reacting] as she realizes Romney will crouch down directly in front of her and her classmates for the group photo.” We are glad that’s cleared up, but AP senior vice-president and executive editor Kathleen Carroll has more, just in case:

The original caption on the photo of Gov. Romney taken Monday at a Virginia school was literally correct — it said the governor was posing for photos with schoolchildren. But it was too generic and missed the boat by not explaining exactly what was happening. The student with the surprised expression had just realized that the governor was going to crouch down in front of her for the group photo.

“We amended the caption on Tuesday with that explanation, but by then many people had seen the photo and were confused by or angry about it. Those generic captions help us process a large number of photos on a busy campaign day, but some photos demand more explanation and we fell short of our own standards by not providing it in this case.”

The AP would also like to say sorry for the existence of still photography, the phenomenon of perspective, and the cruel, context-less hell hole that is the world wide web.

AP Apologizes for Alley-Ooping Romney Fart Jokes