More on FAQ #108

108. Why isn’t social media a reliable source for trustworthy photographs?

Because in order to trust a photograph, viewers have to be confident that they can trust any claims being made about the photograph...

. . . but because of how it is structured and operated, social media does not consistently give viewers that confidence.

Consider the situation when using TCQ:

A. Photographers and publishers who use the “Guaranteed TCQ” label are effectively inviting their audience to scrutinize them closely and call them out for any missteps. (See also trust exchange)

B. Viewers cannot be confident that they can make “A” happen when they see a photo in any context that doesn’t have the attributes of trusted websites.

C. Social media does not have any of the attributes linked in “B.”

With social media, viewers often cannot reliably hold an actual person accountable for the claims implied in the “Guaranteed TCQ” label — and viewers also know that any TCQ-labeled photograph could disappear from being online the minute it is challenged.

D. TCQ photographers who regard social media as an important marketing tool

— but who are concerned about issues of trustworthiness—

— can additionally also publish their work in a context where it is easier for viewers to hold the photographer accountable (even if that other context is only the photographer’s own monosite). More on “D”