While many alarming or suspiciously interesting pictures (and videos) have later proven to be 'shopped', I believe that Randall is commenting on the abysmal existence of a certain kind of person who cries foul on *any* picture that isn't straightforward.
They usually profess to be Photoshop experts and point out various 'defects' in the photo that 'prove' it has been manipulated.
This is just a (hopefully unconscious) attempt to appear more cynical, more intelligent and harder to fool than everybody else who has ignored the glaring evidence.
What makes it simultaneously amusing and annoying is that usually the commenter is patently, completely and obviously wrong - the image has in fact captured a real occurrence.
The original examples that come to mind are the Apollo 11 photographs from the surface of the moon, but the internet abounds with such.
188.8.131.52 18:28, 17 December 2013 (UTC)
To be entirely fair, with the advent of 3D printers, it will become possible to "shop" real-life objects. 184.108.40.206 00:03, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
- I'll just leave this here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/new-matter-mod-t-3d-printing-for-everyone Brettpeirce (talk) 13:48, 29 May 2014 (UTC)
- This is already done with plastic surgery, although to a more limited degree, of course. All other physical alterations widely available to the public used on existing objects (that come to mind) are for practical means, such as fixing a refrigerator220.127.116.11 19:35, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
Predicting a resurgence of this comic/dynamic with the advent of "looks AI generated". Reminds me a bit of 1306: Sigil Cycle in that there's something of an arms race between awareness of what makes something "look fake" and the fakery technology itself becoming able to fake those details.