A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo and also NH69729 ?

Post by wadinga » Wed Dec 11, 2019 4:58 pm

Fellow Contributors,

I have changed my thread title to include NH69729. From now on it is entirely acceptable to discuss these two closely time-related photographs together. This applies retrospectively.

Mr Bonomi had realised that his conjectural tracks were simply wrong in March this year after maintaining their inviolability for about a decade, and started messing about with both his invented track for Bismarck and the Gefechtskizze track when confronted with the evidence from these photographs alone. He had no choice because these photos were in the public domain, but he could withhold access to other photographs in his possession so as to hamper other potential contributors. As such his conjectural map for the German forces at Denmark Strait was rendered non-definitive in March this year, by his own admission.
I don't know the reasons, I just know my promise. I'm sorry, my hands are tied.
I respect this observation although I am much intrigued by it. I am astonished Herr Nilsson was not intrigued enough to find out why. Why in about 2009, his friend is enjoining him to keep these images secret nearly 70 years after they were made? Does somebody really think some newspaper is going to pay a fortune for them one day when the time is right? Like the bogus Hitler Diaries? Is an author dreaming he will show "a New Perspective" without reversing the images? If this friend hasn't done anything with them 10 years later, when is he going to try and monetise them? Maybe as a retirement nest egg? If he's not quick Mr Bonomi may render them worthless because if they are not unique but merely withheld they are not truly his.

To my mind any copyright on the majority of the published photos lies with Propaganda Kompanie of the defunct Third Reich and any ownership claim by either the Bundesarchiv or the US Naval History and Heritage command is surely tendentious. There surely cannot be any contract transferring their ownership. The Federal German government can surely not claim ownership of everything "owned" by the Nazi Regime since these include artworks looted from all over Europe. The US government merely got a load of photographs included with a free heavy cruiser. Paul Schmalenbach put his name to pictures which were not his, but he got access to, merely by being a crew member. Maybe Fritz Dungert just supplied a print of existing material he got access to as a crew member and now AP wants to charge for access to it.

These official bodies claim "reproduction charges" by virtue of having the highest quality originals/near originals and demand a credit on use in publications. In the age of the Internet with easy and untraceable image exchange such a cartel must soon collapse.

Unpublished photos have some copyright protection, under the Berne Convention, provided ownership can be proven, but for photos from 1941 that would be difficult and copyright runs out 25 years after creation.

I'm quite happy to be called a virulent catalyst for discussion.

All the best

wadinga
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:27 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote: "I have changed my thread title to include NH69729"
A very good bypass, my congratulations. :clap:
Therefore, before moving to the NH69729, we can conclude that the NH69730 can perfectly match Antonio's reconstruction (here together with Mr.Jurens one download/file.php?id=3593) , as you are unable to prove how the barrels of the 105 mm were oriented... A good step forward, if not just an attempt to avoid demonstrating your statements, changing subject.


&: "Mr Bonomi had realised that his conjectural tracks were simply wrong in March...As such his conjectural map for the German forces at Denmark Strait was rendered non-definitive in March this year"
Wrong. He had realised that it needed a very (slight) adjustment.... as simple as that. Please refer to (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8335&start=375#p82424) and please consider that the current track is still a possible solution.
At that time, however, "someone" tried to move the discussion (that was about the track after the second turn) to the whole battle and then left the discussion...

Where are your proposed tracks ? None available ? A pity, because a discussion with you would have been very interesting indeed, as usual...but a discussion based on nothing is just boring...



&: "I'm quite happy to be called a virulent catalyst for discussion"
... different sensibilities in different cultures, apparently... someone fells very sensitive when called a "loser", I'm sensitive when called "virulent"... the "moderator" will have to judge which is an insult and which is not.


Bye, Alberto
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by wadinga » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:34 pm

Fellow Contributors,
A good step forward
would be to admit the barrels are parallel to the horizon and therefore horizontal.

Then we can move on.

All the best

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:50 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote (quoting me) : " " A good step forward" would be to admit the barrels are parallel to the horizon"
I easily admit they are almost (around 3°difference are present, to be very precise).
However, you don't know their elevation....because you cannot know whether they were in their "stowed" position at that time... :stubborn:
Therefore they cannot be used to prove anything re. orientation, while they prove where was the photographer on board PG. From here we can possibly move on...

Only looking at the un-cropped (high resolution) version of the "poor quality photo" you may be able to see the whole mounting and... :wink:


Bye, Alberto
Last edited by Alberto Virtuani on Wed Dec 11, 2019 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by wadinga » Wed Dec 11, 2019 7:16 pm

Fellow Contributors,

If they are horizontal their elevation is zero.

All the best

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Wed Dec 11, 2019 7:40 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote: "If they are horizontal their elevation is zero."
Wrong (i will use again a photo I have used already in the past, trying to explain you (without success....) that you cannot get to simple conclusion without having all the elements)...

In this photo the railings at the left (outlined in red) are obviously horizontal, but they are not parallel to the horizon, while the orange line (an hypothetical "inclined upward" railing is parallel to the horizon but it is not horizontal at all....

nh69723_railings.jpg
nh69723_railings.jpg (37.7 KiB) Viewed 714 times

Now imagine that the "inclined upward" railing is an elevated barrel and you will see how your conclusion is simply wrong. Sorry.

Without knowing the elevation of the barrels you cannot say anything about how much aft of the beam the photographer is looking at....


Bye, Alberto
"It takes three years to build a ship; it takes three centuries to build a tradition" (Adm.A.B.Cunningham)

"There's always a danger running in the enemy at close range" (Adm.W.F.Wake-Walker)

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Bill Jurens » Wed Dec 11, 2019 9:35 pm

Earlier, Mr. Vituani asked three questions, viz.:

I will reply, between asterisks, below:

1) After having published the photo, why are there now (late) doubts about its attribution ? What has emerged new ? :think:

*** I have always been somewhat skeptical regarding attribution. The problem is, that if one restricted publication only to information that was known to be absolutely true and accurate regarding the Denmark Strait action, one could, in reality, almost publish nothing at all. Having looked at a lot of photography over the years, some of which has been deliberately or otherwise printed in misleading ways, and having spent years over the easel in a darkroom environment, I have learned to be very skeptical indeed regarding the reliability which can be reasonably assigned with regard to geometry, attribution, or both. So my skepticism isn't new; it just wasn't published in the book.***



2) After having published (and signed) a very precise battlemap (pag.211 of his book: download/file.php?id=3593), how could he time this photo at 06:04 ?

*** The battlemap shown on page 211 represents an amalgam of various sources, which in my judgement represents a reasonable synthesis of various sources, many of which are ambiguous and/or contradictory. One of the 'curses' of making a chart like this is that the very depiction of the tracks shown, in the form of well defined thin lines, tends to give one the impression that they are necessarily precise and correct. In reality, they represent (as in the situation in most maps) only an approximation of reality. If the bands of uncertainty could also be plotted on a chart, the picture would be so 'blurry' as to be incomprehensible. Just like the actual engagement...

The 'signature' on the drawing is primarily intended as a filing aid, enabling me to recover the drawing from my index if changes, modifications, or further reproduction is required. My co-authors looked at the drawing and in some cases suggested changes or modifications, but if we waited until we could unambiguously resolve all discrepancies between the written record and the reconstructed track chart, all of us would still be waiting. ***


As per "his" battlemap, at 06:04 PG was stationed on the port side of BS, both German ships firing their guns aft of their beam (while the photo shows Bismarck starboard side and firing fore of her beam...) ? :shock:

*** No "shock" required. As most of us know, the photography and the associated track charts available have been subject to a great deal of scrutiny over the years, and many interpretations -- often highly variant interpretations -- have sprung therefrom. The record is ambiguous enough that almost any hypotheses can be put forward and 'proven' by selecting certain sources as being reliable, discarding other sources as unreliable, and filling in the blanks via imagination. I think the account given in the book represents a reasonable synthesis, but I would not consider it -- or for that matter any other -- account as 'definitive'. They represent, at best, variant interpretations of ambiguous and contradictory evidence. ***


2) Where is the "order" (from the above caption at pag.228) from Adm,Lutjens coming from ? This "order" is mentioned also at pag.218 and repeated at pag.242, without giving any reference for it. :?:
I'm not aware of any source for this info, that would be a very valuable one, if true and not only an "authors' free interpretation"....

*** If we attempted to provide sources for every quote and statement used, the book would have more footnotes than text. It's a general account, not an academic paper, and is written that way. I am not sure from whence the word 'order' came, but don't feel that the term was intended to be interpreted (or supported) in any exceptionally rigorous manner. Sometimes a simple brief explanation, though technically incorrect, is better and more appropriate than an extremely lengthy explanation that goes on for hours. One teaches to the middle of the class... ***

As an aside, I would express an opinion that the withholding of various photographs and other sources of information, (e.g. by Herr Nilsson) need not be interpreted as obstructive. As an editor, I very often receive information that the supplier provides with the request, for whatever reasons, that it not be further circulated. In those cases regardless of the copyright formalities, I will abide by that request.

I would caution participants to resist previously experienced tendencies to attack others in a personal manner. If you can't say it nicely, then just don't say it. Concentrate not on why your opponent's argument is bad, but on why your argument is better.

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Wed Dec 11, 2019 10:25 pm

Hello everybody,

thanks to MrJurens for the answers to my 3 questions. My observations:

1) Not being sure of the authenticity of a photo, a disclaimer should have been added (or at least a general disclaimer for all the battle images should have been written somewhere).
The caption at pag. 228 is unequivocally stating that the photo was taken during the battle, as all the others "lightly" published in the book...


2) I see all the "indeterminateness" reasons...
However, Mr.Jurens has not answered the key question: based on pag.211 published battlemap, "the flash effect photo" would have been taken at around 06:08:20, no doubts about this fact (download/file.php?id=3593).
Based on what have the authors written 06:04 in the pag.228 caption, making the overall reconstruction "so 'blurry' as to be incomprehensible" ?


3) The word "order" is repeated at least 3 times in the book (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8756#p85162). I understand the choice not to give a reference for everything in a "divulgative" book, but if there is no source at all for it (as I understand from the answer), such an unsupported "free interpretation" would be a very serious shortcoming for a book that concentrates mainly on the operational history of the ship.


Bye, Alberto
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Bill Jurens » Thu Dec 12, 2019 2:55 am

Mr. Virtuani:

Your comments are noted, and will be taken into consideration should a reprint or second-edition be forthcoming.

Bill Jurens

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Thu Dec 12, 2019 8:06 am

Thanks again, Mr.Jurens, for your answer,

however, you have not yet answered the question n.2 (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8756&p=85197#p85189), therefore re-phrased here below:

a) Based on your own battlemap (download/file.php?id=3593) and assuming (as logical) that you have considered it as being the most accurate possible one, and the one that give to readers the best possible overview of the battle development (having signed and published it in a book dedicated to the Bismarck operation);
b) assuming that the photo is not a "fake" (that I don't believe, but I understand you still have doubts about these historical photos, despite we even know the names of some the photographers and the camera operator onboard and they have been "validated" by Schmalenbach, Rohwer and the Baron themselves when they worked together to produce the first fairly good battlemap of the DS...)

At what time can the photo have been taken from aboard the Prinz Eugen ?

Can you please confirm that around 06:08:20 is a decent approximation (given the 2 above assumptions) as per Antonio's reconstruction (download/file.php?id=3603), while 06:04 is absolutely impossible due to the other existing photographic evidences (mostly the PG film) and due to the proposed battlemap ? Do you see any problem with such an attribution at 06:08:20, in addition to the several "disclaimers" you have expressed already ?


Bye, Alberto
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by northcape » Thu Dec 12, 2019 9:06 am

Alberto Virtuani wrote:
Thu Dec 12, 2019 8:06 am


a) Based on your own battlemap (download/file.php?id=3593) and assuming (as logical) that you have considered it as being the most accurate possible one, and the one that give to readers the best possible overview of the battle development (having signed and published it in a book dedicated to the Bismarck operation);
b) assuming that the photo is not a "fake" (that I don't believe, but I understand you still have doubts about these historical photos, despite we even know the names of some the photographers and the camera operator onboard and they have been "validated" by Schmalenbach, Rohwer and the Baron themselves when they worked together to produce the first fairly good battlemap of the DS...)

At what time can the photo have been taken from aboard the Prinz Eugen ?
Of course I cannot speak for Mr. Jurens, but I think that (a) needs to be broken up in two parts: (1) the assumption that the mentioned map was considered as the "most accurate one" and (2) the assumption that the mentioned map is the one which gives the reader the best overview. These are two largely independent topics.

I would say that (2) is very much an intention, while (1) is not an intention at all. E.g. the question of accuracy, if treated seriously, can in no way be answered here. We simply have neither ground truth, nor a sufficient understanding/knowledge of the uncertainties of the plethora of assumptions in any reconstruction in that case. In that regard, all reconstructions are equally inaccurate. Depending on which assumptions you trust more or not, you can of course favor a particular reconstruction. But this has nothing to do with accuracy in the intended meaning of this word.

Having said that, I my answer to At what time can the photo have been taken from aboard the Prinz Eugen ? would simply be: I don't know, and I don't care at all because depending on your preferred combination of assumptions you can get any answer you like.

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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Thu Dec 12, 2019 10:22 am

Hello everybody,

as noted by Northcape the question was to Mr.Jurens....
Northcape wrote: " all reconstructions are equally inaccurate."
Respectfully, I totally disagree with this statement, because Mr.Jurens has published a battlemap that "comes" to exactly the same conclusions than Antonio's one (as you can see here: download/file.php?id=3593).

Therefore (but I wait for Mr.Jurens answer), this reconstruction was built/chosen for publication at pag.211, because it is the most accurate (up to now), taking into account all the evidences we have at hand (and luckily, for this battle, we have quite a lot, more than enough to come to a reliable conclusion).
Not having seen any other alternative reconstruction (except Mr.Winklareth one, that apparently is not acceptable, albeit being a very respectable example of independent "work" to produce an overall battlemap that puts together all evidences and not only a vain attempt to question Antonio's work, quibbling over details and never presenting an alternative), we must conclude that the above battlemaps are the "best" (as per today) in terms of accuracy.

&: "...I don't know, and I don't care at all because depending on your preferred combination of assumptions you can get any answer you like."
Wrong. You can get to a diferent conclusion ONLY if you have your own alternative: Mr.Winklareth can say he has an alternative timing, around 06:02, based on his tracks. Not having a "decent" alternative to present, there is no way to "indeterminately" say that any conclusion is equally good.



Based on the "agreed" battlemap (download/file.php?id=3593), my question is very simple: is there an alternative to 06:08:20 as timing for the flash effect photo ? (download/file.php?id=3603)
Answer is very simple as well: No, there is not.

I don't understand the reluctance to answer such a trivial question (in view of the assumptions viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8756&p=85199#p85197), even if I fully appreciate the difficulty for someone to accept and admit in public that Antonio's work is evidently the "best" available up to now... :wink:


Bye, Alberto
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by wadinga » Thu Dec 12, 2019 11:57 am

Fellow Contributors,

Returning to the subject of the thread
Wrong (i will use again a photo I have used already in the past, trying to explain you
Thank you for this photograph which neatly proves my point. In one part it shows the starboard after 4.1" mount with the crew at casual battle stations and in the aft-pointing stowed position. There is nothing to engage and no reason to rotate the mount. It also shows that the photographer is standing up and the breeches of the guns are at the same height as his eye. This is a high angle mount and the trunnions are high to accommodate this.

In the flash effect photo the muzzles are at approximately the same height as the photographer's eye, and the barrels parallel to the horizon. Because the muzzles are seen at an aspect ratio from in front at about 45 degrees and the photographer is standing on the deck and not floating above the sea, the mount is still in the forward ie stowed position.

In the photo which has been supplied, since the railings outlined in red are at waist height and the POV of the photographer is slightly above head height (unless these sailors are all shorthouses) perspective renders the argument made invalid. If the POV of the camera were at waist height the railings would be parallel to the sea.

The particular rail in red is most unusual aboard PG as explained by Mr Bonomi many years ago, since it is part of a bandstand forward of the aft 4.1" and does not run fore and aft. However when he started redrawing his conjectural battlemap in March this year in order to accommodate the actual evidence from the two photos NH69729 & NH69730 which supposedly were taken 60 seconds apart, in which time the PG conjecturally moves from 45 degrees off Bismarck's port bow to 45 degrees off the starboard bow, he evidently realised his geometry was hopelessly compromised. He was well aware of the deck location where NH69729 was taken and accepted the ships are at 90 degrees to one another and not the 45 degrees he had drawn. I presume he realised his attempt to maintain the timing ticks at the same distance for a ship which had just executed two right angle turns and thus slowed considerably was not supportable and that his whole conjectural track plan which is supposed to be based on the photos was actually disproved by them.

Once again I expect there will be an unreasonable demand from someone that I produce an alternate track, probably from an individual who has access to hidden additional photography which could help, but which is deliberately withheld maybe in order to hamper such a co-operative process. This is possibly the result of a constraint based on a promise. Once again the bizarre requirement to hide a portion of the relevant photography nearly 80 years after these events happened, hampers this work. Hiding this material is surely only explainable if somebody hopes to make monetary gain from its rarity.

I am surprised to read:
As an aside, I would express an opinion that the withholding of various photographs and other sources of information, (e.g. by Herr Nilsson) need not be interpreted as obstructive. As an editor, I very often receive information that the supplier provides with the request, for whatever reasons, that it not be further circulated. In those cases regardless of the copyright formalities, I will abide by that request.
Of course withholding such material is obstructive, but the motive may not be obstruction. In this case an illogical determination to stop this material being generally seen, presumably by a PG crew member as the original source, has generated a series of promises by which the current possessor feels bound, although the originator is almost certainly dead and no longer bothered. That apparently the same material is in the hands of one who hopes to make book sales out of presenting this material to the public gaze renders the original source's restriction pointless.

All the best

wadinga
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo?

Post by Alberto Virtuani » Thu Dec 12, 2019 12:18 pm

Hello everybody,
Wadinga wrote: "Thank you for this photograph which neatly proves my point."
Instead of admitting he was simply wrong, Mr.Wadinga insists. In the "flash effect photo":

he can determine neither the exact orientation not the exact elevation of the centre (not the aft one....) 105mm mounting;
he doesn't know where exactly was the photographer when the photo was taken;
he doesn't know the precise focal length of the used camera (of course affecting the perspective);
he doesn't know whether the photo is cropped and how much (not even having a good version of it, like the one mentioned by Herr Nilsson...);
he doesn't know whether the photographer eye was at the level of the guns (or under, or above this level, because (not knowing whether the photo is cropped or not), he cannot know where the "focus" of the perspective is in the original image)...etc.etc.

No way for him to determine, from the barrels aspect, the way the photographer looked at the Bismarck (how many degrees aft of the beam)...

Fine, let's wait for his proposed battle reconstruction, that I'm sure will address all his "findings" and will show us the correct timing of the photo.
Oh, sorry, he already knows that he should logically (not unreasonably) present his own alternative in a discussion, thus he preventively wrote:
"Once again I expect there will be an unreasonable demand from someone that I produce an alternate track..."


Ok then, as he is 1) unable to determine anything from the photo (for the reasons mentioned above) and 2) unwilling to produce his alternative battlemap (for his own admission), I can only repeat him what I wrote in my previous post, being the only incontrovertible FACT presented here and leaving to him his "sterile" criticism.

Based on the only widely "agreed" published battlemap (download/file.php?id=3593), my question is very simple: is there an alternative to 06:08:20 as timing for the flash effect photo ? (download/file.php?id=3603)
Answer is very simple as well: No, there is not.

I don't understand the reluctance to answer such a trivial question (in view of the assumptions viewtopic.php?f=1&t=8756&p=85199#p85197), even if I fully appreciate the difficulty for someone here to accept and admit in public that Antonio's work is evidently the "best" available up to now, after he had mocked him... :wink:


Bye, Alberto
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Re: A correct attribution for the "Flash Effect" photo and additionally NH 69729?

Post by wadinga » Thu Dec 12, 2019 3:17 pm

Fellow Contributors,

One again I am misquoted by truncating a sentence:
"Once again I expect there will be an unreasonable demand from someone that I produce an alternate track..."
instead of
Once again I expect there will be an unreasonable demand from someone that I produce an alternate track, probably from an individual who has access to hidden additional photography which could help, but which is deliberately withheld maybe in order to hamper such a co-operative process.
But maybe he too is blamelessly shackled by a binding and unbreakable oath and is sworn not to divulge these sensitive images of nearly 80 years ago for reasons that make no sense other than some imagined future financial gain.

The fundamental conundrum of the action is how PG can have moved from port of Bismarck to starboard of her, leading Mr Winklareth to publish his radical but unsupportable proposal. Mr Bonomi realised in March this year that he had overlooked or conveniently forgot evidence in the published photographs and this rendered his conjectural track plot invalid and started redrawing it.( thanks for the reference Mr Virtuani).

In March 26 2006 Mr Bonomi wrote on the dedicated NH69729 thread:
Now I think we all can say with a very high confidence level that Nh 69729 was surely taken midship as I said , between the catapult and the crane.

It shows Bismarck coming 90 degrees to Prinz Eugen beam on starboard side.
Prinz Eugen was sailing from right to left on course 270 degrees.
Of course 270 degrees makes no sense because the assumption is made that Bismarck maintains approx. 220T meaning PG actually steers 310T. However the conjectural track was never changed because this radical course difference could not be incorporated without invalidating the whole conjectural track plan. The 60 seconds he had allocated for PG to cut across the bows of a 50,000ton battleship travelling at full speed whilst travelling at only 45 degrees to that ship's course were always inadequate, and anyway NH69729 actually showed the ships at right angles to one another.

Once again since the conjectural track plan and its timings are invalid, it is impossible to say precisely when any of these pictures were taken, although a speculative sequence may be attempted.

Just saying.

All the best

wadinga
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