Is that lush valley in Phoenix? Twitter has field day over city’s Super Bowl image

On Sunday evening, the official Twitter account for Phoenix posted a photo of downtown to promote Super Bowl LVII coming to the Valley.

At first glance, the view seems to be from atop Piestewa Peak looking south toward the downtown skyline.

Upon further inspection, it’s all wrong.

The photo, while beautiful, gets weirder with time.

The photo shows high-rise buildings, a state highway and—in the foreground—mountains.

But something with the mountains is amiss. They are deserved, green mountains.

And the buildings. They seem like they’ve been fanned out, like a deck of cards — no depth.

Needless to say, people had a field day. By Tuesday morning, the photo had more than 170 likes, more than 80 quote tweets and more than 20 retweets. It had over 115,000 impressions and counting.

“This is one crazy photoshopped pic,” said one Twitter user. “Surprised you didn’t drop in a jackalope too.”

“Drop the coordinates,” one said.

“Uhhhhhh what is this photoshop?” said another.

“Looks fine. I don’t get the outrage. If anything, I think they should lean more into the bit. Put in a lake. Add some bears, moose, beavers, and other mountainous animals that are native to the area,” said another.

All the city wanted was to welcome the Kansas City Chiefs to the Valley, after they secured their spot to face off against the Philadelphia Eagles on Feb. 12: “Congrats to the @Chiefs and welcome to #PHX. Safe travels to visit #Phoenix – and remember – your weather highs these days are our lows.. pack some shorts.”

The image was the second Super Bowl-related pic to catch flak on Twitter this week. The NFL on Sunday tweeted a promotional image of four quarterbacks facing Glendale’s State Farm Stadium, which is sitting on a desert mesa. It could be the Grand Canyon. It could be Horseshoe Bend. If it weren’t for the saguaros, it could be Mars. Wherever it is, it’s not Glendale.

City spokesperson Matt Hamada was unaware of the spectacle when The Arizona Republic reached out.

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“Man, we’re just trying to have some Super Bowl fun,” he joked. Hamada said the city regularly uses stock photos for promotional messaging and was unsure if the image had been photoshopped.

Hamada later told The Republic that the photo is, in fact, a composite of multiple images. The city has tweeted the photo in the past with no significant reaction, Hamada said.

“It’s kind of fascinating to me,” he said. “It’s always a guessing game what will and will not spark engagement. While we knew tagging the incoming Super Bowl teams would get us some new eyes, we did not expect the direction the post has taken.”

Here’s more from Phoenix on the photo:

“The City of Phoenix, like many institutions, uses photos and videos to showcase themselves in marketing opportunities. This photo … has been used for years by the City to highlight the beauty of what Phoenix has to offer. This composite and stylized photo was used with permission from Visit Phoenix for regular and special marketing events, such as the Final Four and Super Bowl.”

Reach reporter Taylor Seely at [email protected] or on Twitter @taylorseely95.

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Phoenix tweeted an altered photo for Super Bowl; Twitter has field day

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