There is no doubting that video games are getting more and more realistic with each generation of console, but it appears that ITV may have made the mistake of mixing the two up in their recent documentary Exposure – Gaddafi and the IRA.
Youtube user jordan8445 seems to have been one of the first to spot the oversight, in which ITV claims the footage is real and from a 1988 IRA film, and made a clip showing the rather damning similarities of the two (see below).
There is nothing wrong with ITV using the very impressive footage from ARMA 2 in theory and calling it a re-enactment of some kind. However, the screen text clearly indicates that this should be real footage – and whilst it is difficult to be certain, this is very damning evidence. Exposure is supposed to be a documentary series centred on factual content – but if ITV don’t investigate the sources of their video material, it is not a good sign for research for the series in general.
UPDATE: It appears that Bohemia Interactive had no knowledge that their game was going to be used in this fashion, with CEO Marek Spanel telling PC Gamer that Bohemia weren’t approached by ITV for permission and they are pretty surprised, stating:
We are going to try to get some explanation from ITV how this could have happened.
Sometimes creativity and realism in our games lead into crazy results and this is one such example. I just briefly watched the entire documentary and I still can not believe it as it is overall a very serious and lengthy feature.
We are surprised our games apparently may look real enough to some users already that they can not tell it is not real life footage.
You can watch Exposure – Gadaffi and the IRA online now on ITV Player and check it out for yourself.
UPDATE: Oh no you can’t! It appears ITV has taken the documentary offline for the time being to investigate.
In a statement ITV have said that the mishap was:
the unfortunate result of human error