Top Model spoiled by photos’ dates

The 20th cycle of America’s Next Top Model, the first to feature male contestants, has apparently been spoiled as a result of information inadvertently revealed because of viewer voting, which takes place during production.

Photographs of the models are posted online after each challenge; in order to not reveal who was eliminated by Tyra Banks, all models are photographed for each challenge. But a Reality TV Games contributor who goes by supmod noticed and tracked the dates embedded in digital photographs, which gave away the order of elimination.

That EXIF data on the photos revealed that, for each subsequent challenge, an increasing number of photos were taken one day earlier than an increasingly smaller number of photos. Those photos taken the previous day are likely those who were eliminated, as they were photographed before the models who remained in the competition. (Last season, at least one elimination was spoiled because of online voting.)

Buzzfeed has a rundown of how this unfolded, which is helpful especially because reading through message board posts can be disorienting and soul-crushing.

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 37, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.