Back in October 2010, I voiced my frustration about a then months long roadblock on getting a picture corrected on baseball-reference.com. After pointing the error out, explaining the circumstances, and providing the correct picture, and still getting nowhere, I figured airing out the laundry in a public forum was the next logical step.
The error was spotted through a study of baseball cards and a passion for cup of coffee players. I was researching war time players from the WWII era and came across a picture of Roy Schalk, a second baseman who played for the White Sox in 1944 and 1945. His only other MLB experience was in 1932, with the Yankees. In the picture I found, Roy looks thrilled to be back in the majors with the distinctive arches of Comiskey Park behind him.
The trouble was that the picture being used on Roy's page was of Hall of Fame catcher Ray Schalk, who is not any relation to Roy. The error stemmed from a 1936 World Wide Gum card of Ray Schalk that was listed as Roy Schalk on the front of the cards. Just looking at the back of the card revealed that the card was of Ray Schalk, the Hall of Fame catcher who was manager of the Buffalo Bisons from 1932 - 1937. It was an honest mistake, but one that was never corrected. Simply looking at the back of the card would have clarified any mistakes from the front, but most people don't scan the back of baseball cards on any regular basis.
Today, I was informed by Phungo that baseball-reference did a massive update to the photos, adding many missing pictures and correcting mistakes. I checked out Roy's page and am happy to report that the picture has been corrected. I consider it a victory. I understand that maintaining a site like baseball-reference can be daunting, even with a dedicated team, but I'm curious as to why it took a year to correct. I think I should stop asking questions and just be grateful that the update is even there.
I won't hesitate to send in more photos that need adding or correcting. I'll just know now to expect Brian Wilson's beard to be at his knees before I may see the results. To the person who finally put the update through, thanks.