A Canadian Sikh man is threatening to sue news outlets after an image of him was photoshopped and wrongly identified as one of the Paris attackers.
Veerender Jubbal said he was concerned for his own safety after an innocent selfie he took in front of the mirror was edited to show him wearing a suicide vest and holding the Koran.
The photo was posted online with captions claiming it showed one of the gunmen behind the shootings which killed 129 people across the French capital on Friday night - and it quickly circulated across social media around the world.
The photo was later disproved and shown to be a hoax. Mr Jubbal, a journalist tech journalist, says he fears he may have been the target of a smear because of his previous criticism of the GamerGate community.
Ready: pic.twitter.com/ae9xEej4gS— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) August 4, 2015
Mr Jubbal, a Sikh man living in Canada, had to correct many of the people tweeting the image by saying, “Let us start with basics. Never been to Paris. Am a Sikh dude with a turban. Lives in Canada.”
In another tweet, he suggested so-called "garbage" GamerGaters had taken his image and misused it. Those who adhere to the GamerGate movement say it is a fight for more ethical coverage of video gaming, but they have been accused of launching misogynistic attacks on female gamers and tech journalists.
People are editing, and photoshopping my selfies as if I am one of the people causing the issues/problems in Paris.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 14, 2015
You can all check the last retweets. Let us start with basics. Never been to Paris. Am a Sikh dude with a turban. Lives in Canada.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 14, 2015
Gamers are absolute garbage like I have been saying for a full year. People will not stop harassing, and bothering me. I am cute as gosh.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 14, 2015
Learn the difference between me being a Sikh, and a Muslim. Cry in mug, while I use your tears to water my garden. I am valuable, and rad.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 14, 2015
Since the image of Mr Jubbal went viral online, it has been used by at least two Spanish news sources calling him a possible suspect in the French shootings.
The Independent has approached Mr Jubbal for comment, but is yet to receive a reply. However, he has tweeted that he may consider pressing charges against the news outlets using his image in their reports on Paris.
Well, just got a phone call from a cousin in India, and they know about it; and saw the whole thing in India Times. We might sue, I guess.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 15, 2015
This whole thing puts me in a bad position in the sense, where I could be harmed and/or hurt due to this. This is libel from news, and TV.— Veerender Jubbal (@Veeren_Jubbal) November 15, 2015
Mr Jubbal said the spread of the image was not limited to European news reports, and tweeted that a cousin in India said "the whole thing [was] in the India Times". He said: "This whole thing puts me in a bad position, where I could be harmed or hurt."
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